To ensure its financial stability during the current economic climate, the MCA Denver
Board of Trustees has cut the Museums 2009 fiscal budget by 17 percent, resulting in the difficult decision to eliminate five staff positions, including the position of Deputy Director.
MCA Denver staff was informed in February that the museum could be facing layoffs, as the budget shifts from $2.5 million in 2008 to $2.1 million in 2009.
Our management team and executive staff started this conversation in November 2008 when economic realities became clear and we as an organization felt that we needed to take prudent and responsible steps to ensure that our operating expenses in 2009 reflected these new economic realities, said MCA Denver Finance Committee Chair Mark Bush. Well continue to monitor our revenue streams and our expenses to ensure the Museum remains in solid financial health.
The MCA Denver board has been in discussions with deputy director John Grant regarding the restructuring of his position since final completion of the building. Grant and the board agreed that he would remain on staff through the hiring of a new director to ensure continuity of leadership in the institution. Grant will step down at the end of March, but will be available on a contract basis for special and curatorial projects.
While the board has adopted a budget for 2009, it has been its policy that the budget would be revised upon the arrival of a new director. One of the first duties of newlyappointed MCA Denver director Adam Lerner will be to work with the board on a final budget and organizational review. After an exhaustive six month nationwide search, Lerner was selected for his curatorial expertise and his unique ability to advance MCA Denvers vision to engage broader audiences in exploring art and ideas.
MCA Denver is one of several museums across the country to recently cut budgets and reduce staff, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Denver Art Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, the Cincinnati Art Museum and the Detroit Institute of Arts.
The operating reductions will not directly impact museum programming or its mission; however the public may see changes at MCA Denver as new director Lerner, the staff and board continue their strategic planning process this year and beyond.
Employees impacted by the MCA Denver layoffs will receive a severance package. In addition, a transition timeline for each position is in progress.