Shari D. Behnke


Over the past twenty-five years, Shari has contributed to the growth and vitality of her community by participating on non-profit boards and creating philanthropic endeavors to support artists.

She started the Behnke Foundation, a private family foundation, which under her leadership introduced the Neddy (1996) a $25,000 unrestricted cash award for two Seattle based visual artists. She established the Brink (2008) in conjunction with the Henry Art Gallery, a $12,500 unrestricted cash award to an emerging visual artist from Washington, Oregon or British Columbia. In 2012 she founded and serves as President, The New Foundation Seattle, (TNFS) a private foundation focusing on strengthening the Seattle art community. TNFS also created the 100K Prize, a $100,000 biennial award presented to an influential, U.S. based woman artist in honor of her exemplary artistic achievements and enduring commitment to her practice.

Shari has served on numerous boards, including Artist Trust, Seattle Children’s Theater and the Tacoma Art Museum.

Shari currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the Chinati Foundation, Marfa, Texas and SOLA a private foundation in Seattle.

She and her husband, John, live in Seattle Washington.