George Mason University
George Mason University Mason
George Mason University

Samuel Sweet

Adjunct Faculty

Contact Information MORE LESS

  • 703-993-8926 (office)
  • Arlington: Vernon Smith Hall, 5085
    3351 North Fairfax Drive, MS 1C8
    Arlington, VA 22201

staff menu:


Sam Sweet is an accomplished leader with proven success sparking innovation, fostering change, and motivating organizations to reach ambitious goals to advance their mission.

Sam has over 30 years of management experience with performing and visual arts organizations. His leadership has transformed those organizations, helping to create a more vibrant and diverse cultural scene in the DC area. He has led two local producing theaters to become cultural destinations and achieve national recognition; a small community based presenting organization that has partnered with its diverse community to revitalize a long-neglected neighborhood; and served as chief operating officer at a major visual arts museum and college of art and design, managing that large, diverse and complex institution.

His accomplishments include:

* Leading the Atlas Performing Arts Center, a renovated historic movie theater in NE DC. The Atlas sparked the economic revitalization of the H Street corridor through vibrant programming in music, dance, theater, spoken word, family programming and youth development.

* Through strategic planning, strengthening the Board, investing in human capital, and mounting an ambitious fundraising campaign, Sam enabled Signature Theatre in Arlington VA to move to a new, two-theater $16 million complex that anchored the expansion of Shirlington.

* Guided The Shakespeare Theatre Company through strategic planning and its first capital campaign to purchase and renovate an abandoned historic building to house its administration and education programs. The Company’s move to this facility sparked the commercial revitalization of the long-neglected Barracks Row corridor in SE DC.

Sam’s collaborative nature has helped create a shared vision and cohesive team within each of his organizations. As a cultural leader, he has joined with philanthropic, civic and business leaders in both DC and Arlington to further the common agenda of economic growth, social impact, community development, improved education and higher quality of life.

Sam holds a BA in art history from Columbia University and an MBA from Virginia Tech. He is an adjunct professor in George Mason University’s Graduate Program in Arts Management. Sam’s “visionary leadership” was recognized by the Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer Foundation with its Exponent Award in 2007.


BA, Columbia University; MBA, Virginia Tech, Business Administration, Virginia Polytechnic University (1990)

More Information

Appointment: Adjunct

Faculty Rank: Instructor

Schools & Programs