Board Members


Hanna Johansson

Ph.D., Dean, Academy of Fine Arts

Art historian and docent Hanna Johansson works as Dean at the Academy of Fine Arts of the University of the Arts in Helsinki. She was previously working as Professor of Contemporary Art Research at the Academy of Fine Arts. She has previously worked as a postdoctoral researcher at the Finnish Academy of Fine Arts (2007-2009), as a researcher at the University of Helsinki (2000-2005) and at the Finnish National Gallery’s Central Art Archive (1998-1999). Johansson has lectured widely at universities and art schools. She has also worked as a curator and written art criticism for numerous publications. Contemporary art, its nature aspect and theoretical concepts are the most central areas of Johansson’s research. She has an extensive publication record on Finnish and international contemporary art.

Max Mickelsson

Entrepreneur, partner, Co-Founders Oy

Max Mickelsson has combined the careers of politician and technologist with working in business and communications. He is currently developing corporate cultures and brand strategies at Co-Founders Oy, where he is one of two founding partners. Before becoming an entrepreneur, he worked for Microsoft, the last position he held being Director for Government Affairs. Prior to that, he worked in politics and government as a Ministerial Advisor. Mickelsson has held positions of responsibility in numerous NGOs. He is now Vice Chair of the IoT Forge Foundation and a member of the board of the Atlantic Council of Finland.  Mickelsson is particularly interested in the potential of artificial intelligence to disrupt corporate culture and society in a complex world. Besides a passion for horses and riding, he is a contemporary-art enthusiast. He holds a Master’s degree in Political Science from Åbo Akademi University.

Lauri Paloheimo

Chair of the Leonora ja Yrjö Paloheimo Foundation

Lauri Paloheimo is Chair of the Board of the Leonora and Yrjö Paloheimo Foundation. The Foundation maintains the University of the Arts Helsinki’s Sibelius Academy Music Centre and concert space at Kallio-Kuninkala manor house in Järvenpää. Paloheimo is also Chair of the Board of the Sibelius Academy Foundation, and a founder member and Chair of the Sibelius Academy’s association for concerts and master classes. In 2018, he was awarded the title of Honorary Doctor by the University of the Arts Helsinki. He is also Chair of the Board of H. G. Paloheimo Oy Ltd. He has made his career in international finance, most recently as an investment banker. Lauri Paloheimo was Pro Arte Foundation Finland’s administrator in the setting up of the Foundation until June 2019.

Marja Ramm-Schmidt, chair

Master of Laws with court training

Marja Ramm-Schmidt, attorney-at-law, has acted as an advisor to Finnish and Finland-based foreign companies since the 1980’s. She has extensive experience of legal proceedings and currently specializes in arbitration. She also advises clients on the property law related to inheritance. In her capacity as legal expert, she is president or a member of the board of several foundations.

Marja Sakari

Ph.D., Director, Ateneum Art Museum

The art historian Marja Sakari is Director of the Ateneum Art Museum, which is part of the Finnish National Gallery. She was previously Curator of Changing Exhibitions at the Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma. In 2008-2012, she was Director of the Finnish Institute in France in Paris. Sakari has taught art history, for instance, as Principal Lecturer at the Academy of Fine Arts, Helsinki, and the University of Helsinki. She has worked as a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Academy of Finland and as a researcher at the Central Art Archives. Her doctoral thesis (2000) dealt with the ethics of Finnish conceptual art via a postmodern and phenomenological interpretation. Sakari has held numerous positions of responsibility in art institutions and has written extensively about visual art.

Hanna Snellman

Ph.D., Vice-Rector, University of Helsinki

Professor Hanna Snellman is Vice-Rector of the University of Helsinki. She has been Professor of European Ethnology at the University of Helsinki since 2012 and was a Dean of Faculty in 2017-2018. She has previously been, for instance, a Vice-Dean (2014-2016) and Acting Dean (2014-2015) at the University of Helsinki, Professor of Ethnology at the University of Jyväskylä (2009-2012), Professor of Finnish at Lakehead University, Canada (2007), and a Researcher at the Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies. Snellman’s doctoral thesis (1997) dealt with the life of loggers along the Kemi River. She has researched people’s everyday lives and movements. She is particularly interested in research on minorities, which has included studying Finnish-speaking migrants in Sweden. Snellman’s numerous positions of responsibility, extensive networks and publications have involved her in many collaborative ventures that span national borders and academic disciplines.