MONTCLAIR, NJ- The Board of Trustees of the Montclair Art Museum (MAM) announced today that Lora Urbanelli has been appointed the Museums next Director beginning January 12, 2009. Urbanelli is currently Executive Director of the Farnsworth Art Museum in Rockland, Maine. She becomes the ninth Director in the 95-year history of MAM, succeeding Patterson Sims, who is departing his post at the end of December.
“I am very proud and enthusiastic about the appointment of Lora Urbanelli,” said Reg Hollinger, President of the Board of Trustees. “She brings extensive experience in arts administration and a genuine passion for art. She is extremely well-suited to help the Board realize its long-term strategic objectives. We are truly fortunate to have found an individual of Lora’s caliber, particularly in the current turbulent financial climate. I cannot say enough to thank the Co-Chairs of the search committee, Trustees Karen Mandelbaum and Carol Wall, who worked so diligently on behalf of the Museum to find the best possible candidate.”
Hollinger continued: “We are deeply grateful to Patterson Sims, who has helped ensure a smooth transition process after leading the Museum for seven years through a period of expansion, record-setting exhibitions, and innovative programming. We thank him as well for the strong community partnerships he has established. He will always remain an esteemed member of the Museum family.”
Board Chairman Adrian Shelby said: “As the Museum stands poised to begin its 95th year, we are delighted to have an administrator with Lora’s skills and experience to lead us forward. Her strategic mind and proven leadership abilities make me not just optimistic but enthused about MAM’s future course.”
At the Farnsworth Art Museum, Urbanelli expanded fundraising efforts, increased the staff, strengthened community relations, and led a successful strategic planning process. Before her arrival at the Farnsworth, Urbanelli was the Interim Director of the Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design, where she had previously been its Assistant Director and Curator of Prints, Drawings, and Photographs. She has an MFA in Museum Studies from Syracuse University and a BA, magna cum laude, in Studio Art from Rutgers University.