June 22, 2012

News Release

For Immediate Release

Art Museum Director Candidates to Visit Springfield

Two candidates for the next Director of the Springfield Art Museum will be in Springfield next week for interviews with the Art Museum Board. The two candidates will also meet with the City of Springfield's Leadership Team and will hold a meet-and-greet session with the public.

In keeping with past practice, the candidates' names and career backgrounds will be released Sunday, closer to the time of the Springfield visit. However, the City and the Art Museum Board want to ensure the public has advance notice of the meet-and-greet session in order to make plans for attendance.

The two candidates will visit Springfield for interviews on Monday, June 25. The meet-and-greet session will be held from 5 to 6 p.m. in the lobby of the Springfield Art Museum, 1111 E. Brookside Dr. Both candidates will briefly introduce themselves and will then be free to talk to those in attendance for the remainder of the session.

Written comments by members of the public will be given to the Art Museum Board, which is the hiring authority under the City Charter. Once a finalist is selected, the City will need to conduct additional required background checks, determine a start date and negotiate terms of employment.

About the Search Process

The City began a nationwide search on February 3, 2012 and approximately 132 applications and resumes were received. The Art Museum appointed a search committee comprised of four art museum board members: Kirk Elmquist, Paula Ingram, Sally Scheid and Judith Fowler; the assistant city manager, Collin Quigley; and the director of human resources, Sheila Maerz.

The search committee initially screened the applications to the top twelve candidates who met all the qualifications of the position which included, but was not limited to: a bachelor's and master's degree in the fine arts, art history, or museum studies and a minimum of four years of professional work experience in an art museum.

The search committee narrowed the field from twelve to seven candidates, upon further review of each candidate's overall scope of experience, including significant managerial experience as well as a proven track record in community collaboration and implementing fresh ideas and program in an art museum environment. Web-based interviews were offered to those top seven candidates.

Two finalists were then invited to Springfield for an on-site interview. The Art Museum Board will make the final selection, as required by the City Charter.

"As with previous searches for the Police Chief and the Director of Aviation, we have been deliberate about gathering community input during this search," said City Manager Greg Burris. "I am committed to an open and transparent process when it comes to hiring those who lead some of our community's most vital institutions."

Input from the public at the Art Museum Board's meeting has been incorporated into the interview process, and additional feedback from the public following Monday's meet-and-greet session will be provided to the Board.

Both candidates will briefly introduce themselves and will then be free to talk to those in attendance for the remainder of the session. They will also be available to the media at that time.

About the Museum

The Springfield Art Museum is the permanent home for some 8,895 art objects representing thousands of years of culture. Special collections include 19th, 20th, and 21st century American paintings, watercolors, sculptures, and prints.

Incorporated in 1928, the museum was first operated entirely by volunteers and still relies heavily on community support in a variety of ways. The Museum has had several homes along the way. The present museum, on the edge of Phelps Grove Park, first opened in 1958.

A 392-seat auditorium was completed in 1974 and extensive renovation of the museum was completed in 1984. In 1994, the Jeannette L. Musgrave Wing with four new exhibition galleries and storage for the permanent collections was completed. In 2008, a new wing with an entry hall, galleries, gift shop, and a new library was completed.

For more information about the selection process, contact: Assistant City Manager Collin Quigley, (417) 864-1116; or Director of Human Resources Sheila Maerz, (417) 864-1600.

city of springfield

Office of the City Manager

840 Boonville Avenue • P.O. Box 8368 • Springfield, MO 65801
417-864-1000 • Fax: 417-864-1912 • springfieldmo.gov