Jill Remington Love received unanimous support of the Utah Senate on Tuesday as the executive director of the Utah Department of Heritage & Arts.
Gov. Gary Herbert announced the appointment of Love in November, but as a cabinet position the confirmation of the state Senate was needed before she could officially take the helm. She will begin serving as the executive director immediately.
The Department of Heritage & Arts is made up of six divisions, including the Division of Arts & Museums, Division of Indian Affairs, Division of State History, Office of Multicultural Affairs, UserveUtah, and the Utah State Library. The department has an annual operating budget of approximately $28 million.
“This department enriches the lives of Utahns through its cultural education, volunteerism, and celebration of our heritage,” Love said. “The many diverse programs of the department also serve as economic drivers in cities and towns throughout Utah, where we can partner with communities to celebrate their unique stories and talents.”
Love has worked for nearly 25 years within city government and private companies, often focusing on community and economic development. Her time included positions within three Salt Lake City mayoral administrations, most recently as the Director of Community and Economic Development for Ralph Becker’s administration. In that role, she was responsible for planning, housing and neighborhood development as well as the Salt Lake City Arts Council. Love also served as a Salt Lake City Councilwoman from 2001 to 2013.
Her work often involved engaging different cultural and civic communities in development efforts, and those experiences will influence her leadership of Heritage & Arts. As a councilwoman, she was a strong supporter of the arts and historical preservation. She also led the creation of the Salt Lake City Human Rights Commission, which has a similar mission to the Utah Office of Multicultural Affairs.
Carlton Christensen, who served with Love for 12 years on the Salt Lake City Council and is now the regional development director for Salt Lake County, applauded her appointment during her earlier confirmation hearing.
“We both believe in good governance … and I found her to be very pragmatic,” Christensen said. “She was always willing to bring disparate sides together to find a solution.”