Introducing Our New Executive Director

The Philadelphia Folklore Project Board of Directors and Staff are thrilled to welcome our new Executive Director, Naomi Sturm-Wijesinghe. We look forward to prioritizing folk and traditional arts in service of social change under the vision and leadership of Naomi. ​

Jeannine Osayande
PFP Interim Director, Board of Directors Co-Chair

A Note from Naomi:

I am deeply honored and humbled to take on this new role with the Philadelphia Folklore Project and the Philadelphia region. My name is Naomi Sturm-Wijesinghe and I will be serving as the Folklore Project’s new Executive Director. I have long admired the Philadelphia Folklore Project as an organization and as an approach to public folklore. The groundbreaking cultural work of Debora Kodish, Selina Morales, Toni Shapiro-Phim and other PFP staff provided solid and inspiring models for my earliest work in New York City. The organization’s unique approach to folklife in service of social change, grounded in the belief that the quality of urban life is directly related to the persistence, diversity and vitality of our vernacular folk cultures, informs and provides a foundation for all of my public folklore projects including Los Herederos, Soorya NYC, and Staten Island’s Working Waterfront. I believe my background in non-profit cultural institutions paired with my passion for collaborative community-based work and interdisciplinary folk-arts programming provides me with a solid foundation from which to take on the job of Executive Director at PFP.  

It is an absolute privilege to work collaboratively with PFP’s expert board and staff to advance and sustain the organization’s uniquely humanistic mission in harmony with local communities. I look forward to ushering in PFP’s next chapter and growing with the organization as we invest in a creative vision for its future. 

I am excited to connect with you all soon. You can reach me any time at

Naomi Sturm-Wijesinghe

News of a formal meet and greet is forthcoming.