meet the Team
We're a small core team, but we pack a pretty big punch. One client calls us, "the little company that could" and we love it. In addition to the core of us, we work with a bunch of really great artists, designers, freelancers and other creative shops on a regular basis. You can read more about each of us, and see some of the folks we partner with, below.
MEREDITH POWELL. CO-FOUNDER/CEO.
Fascinated by the rapid urbanization of our cities and its effect on the human experience, Meredith has spent her career working to enhance cultural and economic vibrancy through integrating art and creativity in the urban environment. Driven by her passion for people, places and the community fabric connecting them, Meredith's work focuses on human-centered, solutions-based strategies, programs and experiences that enhance quality of place and the human connection to it.
Before co-founding Public City with long time collaborator Sharon Lyle, Meredith led Art Alliance Austin for nearly a decade launching award-winning programs and initiatives, including large-scale multi-site cultural events, temporary public art and design projects, and consulting on culture-led economic and community development strategies.
As an artistic director, Meredith has collaborated with and commissioned acclaimed Austin-based and international curators, artists, and designers, earning numerous awards and recognition for artistic excellence including multiple projects selected for the American Pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennale, Austin Chronicle’s Best Public Art, AIA Design Awards Special Recognition and the Austin Critics Table Best Independent Project. Her work has been featured on the cover of Urban Land Magazine, Austin American-Statesman and the Austin Chronicle and she’s received impact awards from the City of Austin and the Downtown Austin Alliance.
Starting her career at Visit Austin, she's rooted in a deep understanding of the direct relationship between a vibrant creative economy and quality of place. Powell is a graduate of the University of Texas Moody College of Communications and Leadership Austin. She serves on multiple boards including Austin Community Design and Development Center, CNU-CTX and Evolve Austin. Powell is always excited about what’s next for Public City, the communities it impacts and the incredible city she calls home.
MELISSA WOLF. OPERATIONS DIRECTOR.
Melissa has a professional background across varied industries that have all come together to make her an experienced organizer/bossy pants. After graduating from the University of Texas with a degree in advertising, she began work as a catering director facilitating both large and small events in and around the Austin area.
Following that, she worked as an account executive for a local television station utilizing her advertising skills and eventually connecting with her next path of managing a small, startup medical practice. Subsequently, combining her newly acquired medical knowledge with her management skills, she moved into the non-profit health sector working for both the LIVESTRONG Foundation and The United Way for Greater Austin in management roles within the Navigation Departments.
As Operations Director, her goal with Public City is to make the day to day business run smoothly for both the team and our clients.
COLE GODVIN. FELLOW IN RESIDENCE.
Cole comes to Public City and Austin, TX from the Bay Area where, having been on the front lines of community development issues, she discovered a passion for creative approaches to improving urban design.
She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in Art Education at UT-Austin in the Community-based Programs track. Her master’s thesis focuses on arts programming in master-planned communities, and her other research interests include the interplay between public programming and New Urbanism, creative placemaking as a tool for building social connections, and the impact of creative activity on population wellness. She is thrilled to directly explore these concerns by working with Public City.
Before coming to Austin for graduate school, Cole taught humanities and journalism courses at innovative independent and public schools in the Bay Area, Los Angeles and New York. She has also worked as an independent arts journalist and digital marketing professional, and as a photo editor for the L.A. Times. Her interest in public programming extends to the sphere of museums and audience engagement. Presently, as a Blanton Museum graduate teaching fellow, she designs and implements curriculum that encourages students of all ages to develop meaningful connections with visual art.
In her downtime she may be found walking the three-mile loop at Townlake with her small and scrappy pup, Lilou, or enjoying one of Austin’s many family-friendly events with her partner, Rick, and young daughter, Sidonie.