A self proclaimed civic arts activist, Judy Nyquist believes that the transformative power of art has the ability to expand understanding, communication, expression and tolerance between generations, ethnic groups and socioeconomic divides. Through longstanding board work and support, she has strengthened more than two dozen arts organizations in Houston, as well as supported many of Houston’s cultural, historic and educational institutions. Judy’s primary philanthropic activities have focused on emerging artists, arts education and public art, particularly in green spaces. She has served on the Boards and committees of the Contemporary Arts Museum, the Menil Collection, the Museum of Fine Arts, the Glassell School of Art, the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft, the Rice University Public Art Program, the Blaffer Gallery, the Asia Society, Hope Stone Dance, Gulf Coast Journal, the Houston Arts Alliance, The Houston Seminar, Buffalo Bayou Partnership, Hermann Park Conservancy, and Discovery Green. Her role in these organizations have been aimed at bolstering education, exposure and availability to wide audiences. An art historian and curator, Judy received her B.A. in art history at the University of Michigan and her M.A. in Northwestern University.
Judy views arts education and exposure to the arts an important element of the fabric of society. Her life is infinitely richer by having had the privilege and opportunity to invest in the vitality and creativity of Houston.