Steven Libman, CEO of the Center for the Performing Arts in Carmel, resigned late Friday afternoon—less than three months after his contract was extended through 2016.
Libman cited personal reasons in a meeting with members of the center's board of directors, said Frank Basile, vice chairman of the board. Basile will serve as interim CEO.
“It came as a surprise,” Basile said. “When we found out the personal reasons, we understood why he was resigning.”
Basile, 70, is a retired executive of the Gene B. Glick Co. and serves on a number of arts organizations’ board of directors. He said the board plans to use the same search committee that found Libman two years ago. He hoped the search will last just a few months.
Libman’s resignation comes just ahead of Sunday’s ribbon cutting on The Tarkington, a 500-seat theater in the $175 million complex that also includes a 1,600-seat concert hall and 200-seat studio theater.
The performing arts center recently unveiled its 2011-12 season lineup, which includes 81 performances at the three venues.
Basile credited Libman with getting the center off to a strong start with this year's opening of the Palladium concert hall. Libman, who made $200,000 his first year in Carmel, also recruited a board led by Chairman Rollin Dick and hired a full-time staff of about 40.
“We have a loyal, dedicated, competent staff,” Basile said. “He really did a good job of getting the center off to the start that it’s gotten.”
Libman was an independent consultant in California when he joined the center in September 2009. Previously, he ran the La Jolla Playhouse.