MARIA LAGHI is a fundraising consultant and freelance writer specializing in creating public/private partnerships for arts organizations. She served for five years as Director of Development for the Film Society of Lincoln Center, a role she assumed in April, 2003 after nearly ten years as Director of Corporate and External Affairs for Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, Inc. At the Film Society, she was responsible for raising approximately 50% of the organization’s $7.5 million annual budget as contributed income. The organization’s major sponsors for high profile annual programs such as The New York Film Festival, New Directors/New Films and the Film Society Gala Tribute (now the Chaplin Award) included HSBC Bank, Stella Artois, The New York Times, Air France, Bank of New York, illy caffè, agnès b. and Audi, among others.
Ms. Laghi joined Lincoln Center, Inc. in January 1994 as its first Director of Sponsorships after a long career in public relations with a focus on creating and leveraging sponsorships and cause-related marketing campaigns. During her 15-year PR career, Ms. Laghi created sponsorship scenarios for clients such as Absolut Vodka, Grand Marnier, Evian, Sandoz Pharmaceuticals, Jergens and Carter-Wallace. At Lincoln Center, she drew on her corporate experience to secure and maintain partnerships with sponsors including Lexus, American Express, Continental Airlines, Movado, Fleet Bank and MetLife for programs including Great Performers, Midsummer Night Swing, Mostly Mozart, Lincoln Center Festival and the nationally televised Live from Lincoln Center.