By Howard Pousner
Former Georgia Council for the Arts executive director Susan S. Weiner, 66, died Saturday from complications following major surgery.
“She worked passionately to create access to the arts for all Georgians,” said her successor, Karen L. Paty, “and took every opportunity afforded her to further the discussion of the value of the arts in our state.”
The first female mayor of the city of Savannah from 1992 to 1995, Weiner was appointed by then-Gov. Sonny Perdue to lead the state’s arts agency in 2004. She served for seven years.
At times the role was a struggle and Weiner’s natural feistiness was put to work, as the GCA’s state funding had been on a steep decline since peaking in 2002. Georgia now ranks 50th in the nation in arts support.
The council, which had been a fairly independent part of the governor’s office, moved to the Georgia Department of Economic Development under Gov. Nathan Deal. Weiner resigned in February 2011