DENVER, Colo., October 5, 2023 – The Board and leadership of Central City Opera (CCO) are delighted to announce the appointment of Scott Finlay as the new President & CEO. With a remarkable twelve-year journey within the organization, he brings an unparalleled understanding of CCO’s rich history, its unique challenges, and its immense potential for artistic and organizational growth. With Finlay’s leadership in place, a national search for an Artistic Director led by Management Consultants for the Arts will commence immediately to ensure continuity of the rich 92-year artistic legacy of CCO.

“After an unanimous vote, we are thrilled to announce Scott Finlay as the new President and CEO of CCO,” said Heather Miller, CCO Board co-chair. “His dynamic leadership and tenure with the company make him the perfect fit for us. He brings a deep understanding of the organization from both the artistic and administrative sides. We are looking forward to seeing Scott, and the company flourish.”

Originally from Jena, Louisiana, Finlay holds an impressive educational background, including a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Louisiana at Monroe (BBA-Management ULM ’89), a master’s degree in vocal performance (MM ULM ’94) and doctoral work at the University of Colorado in vocal performance and pedagogy (DMA CU ABD). His vision for CCO is built upon a comprehensive plan encompassing four critical areas within the company:

  1. Financial sustainability involving innovative approaches for revenue generation by the leverage of current assets and endowment fund development.
  2. Labor relations with a commitment to transparency, collaboration, and fair compensation for artists, along with proactive social media strategies to address public concerns constructively.
  3. Innovation and audience development based on the reimagining of CCO’s artistic vision while continuing to support the world-class quality for which the organization is famous.  In addition, expanding collaborations, and ensuring accessibility to attract a wider and younger audience.
  4. Expanded community engagement and educational outreach initiatives that foster stronger connections by showcasing artistic creations and highlighting the contemporary significance and societal relevance of opera for 21st-century audiences.

“The entire search committee endorses Scott Finlay as President and CEO,” said Joshua Navarro, chair of the search committee. “We are confident he brings the right mix of artistic and administrative skills to the role and will continue to grow CCO’s reputation.”

Upon accepting the role, Finlay expressed his excitement: “I am deeply honored to assume the position of President & CEO at Central City Opera. This institution’s legacy is unparalleled, and I am committed to honoring its past while embracing the necessary changes to ensure a vibrant and sustainable future. I am excited about the possibilities that lie ahead and the opportunity to lead CCO into a new era.”

As it approaches its centennial year, Central City Opera is confident that Finlay will boldly lead the organization to new horizons, combining tradition with innovation while creating a workplace and artistic environment that celebrates diversity, promotes equity, and ensures inclusion.  His extensive experience within CCO, coupled with his strategic approach, positions him as the ideal leader for this transformative era.


About Central City Opera
Founded in 1932, Central City Opera is the fifth oldest professional opera company in the country and is renowned for its exquisite world-class productions, competitive and robust young artist training program and creative educational and community engagement activities. Its summer festival, only 35 miles west of Denver, takes place at 8,500 feet above sea level in the Colorado mountain town of Central City, where the company owns and maintains 27 Victorian-era properties, including the intimate 550-seat jewel box opera house built in 1878. Learn more at

For tickets and festival information, call (303) 292-6700 or email