When Annmarie Erickson starts work Monday with public relations firm Van Dyke Horn, she's walking into her third office in a historic metro Detroit building.
The nonprofit and communications veteran comes from Henry Ford Health System, where she was vice president of governance for nearly two years, but she is well-known for her more than 16 years at the Detroit Institute of Arts, including through the city of Detroit's bankruptcy. Erickson, 61, is joining the Detroit-based PR company in the newly created role of executive vice president. She brings contacts and depth of experience in navigating relationships between nonprofits, business and government — Van Dyke Horn's specialty, CEO Peter Van Dyke said.
Hiring Erickson is another growth move for Van Dyke Horn, which opened an office in Lansing this past spring. Van Dyke said the firm aims to add a yet-to-be-determined number of staff in the next few months to its team of 14.
Erickson left Detroit-based Henry Ford Health in mid-June and wanted to branch out to a job with more variety.
“I’ve spent most of my career in the cultural nonprofit field. I love that field …” Erickson said. “But to tell you the truth, after more than 20 years there … I was just kind of tired … mainly the fundraising part and the continued struggle for sustainability.
“(At Van Dyke Horn), you literally can come in and do something different every day, and that variety was too appealing to turn down.”
Erickson, who joined the DIA in 1999, had served as executive vice president and COO from 2008 until she stepped down in 2016. She played significant roles in the museum’s successful tri-county millage, its spinoff from the city of Detroit and the “Grand Bargain” that shored up pension funds to enable the city to emerge from bankruptcy while protecting the museum’s collection from being sold to pay the city’s debt.
She was among those considered to succeed the museum’s former director Graham Beal prior to Salvador Salort-Pons being named to lead the museum in 2015.
Van Dyke Horn, originally called Berg Muirhead and Associates, changed its name when longtime employees Van Dyke and Marilyn Horn bought the company in 2016. It has served 55 clients so far in 2018, and has a goal of $2 million in revenue for the year.