COLUMBUS, Ohio —The board of trustees of the Columbus Museum of Art (CMA) has named Brooke A. Minto as the Museum’s new executive director and CEO following a national search. Minto brings over 20 years of experience as an arts administrator, art historian and educator working across U.S. and international museums, as well as interdisciplinary arts organizations. Minto takes the helm of CMA on May 15, 2023, succeeding Nannette Maciejunes, who served as executive director for 20 years.
Led by CMA Board President Pete Scantland, the search committee determined that Minto’s unique combination of leadership skills, experience and demonstrated success perfectly align with the Museum’s critical priorities. These include articulating an inspiring institutional and curatorial vision for a sustainable future, forging and maintaining valuable partnerships at the local, regional, national, and international levels, exhibiting strategic and compassionate leadership both inside and outside the Museum and driving the realization of diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) across the Museum’s people, policies and programs.
“Brooke is an inspiring, engaging and proven leader, who can immediately elevate the Columbus Museum of Art by every key measure – institutionally, curatorially, financially and reputationally,” said CMA Board President Pete Scantland. “She is deeply accomplished in institutional advancement, having fundraised extensively and engaged communities as varied as New Orleans, New York City, Miami and Cape Town. Her expertise, natural curiosity, intuition and leadership acumen will all combine to simultaneously preserve our revered community-centric Museum and raise its international profile, prospects and impact.”
Minto joins CMA from the Black Trustee Alliance for Art Museums (BTA) where she most recently served as the inaugural executive director. The BTA aims to transform art museums into more equitable and excellent spaces of cultural engagement by harnessing the power of Black trustees to diversify and govern their institutions. BTA serves as a resource to and collaborates with museums, trustees, foundations, and others in the field.
“Over the course of her distinguished career, Brooke has demonstrated an exceptional ability to lead institutions in the right direction with a commitment to serving people and communities across the world,” says Ford Foundation President, Darren Walker. “Her unwavering support of art and artists continues to inspire me, and I am certain she will leverage her decades of experience and love of the arts to bring the Columbus Museum of Art to new heights.”
Minto’s leadership experiences also include serving as managing director of the Advisory Board for the Arts, Washington D.C. and New York; interim co-director and director of institutional advancement at Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz MOCAA) in Cape Town, South Africa and executive director of Zeitz MOCAA Foundation USA, based in New York; chief advancement officer at the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York; deputy director for development and external affairs at the New Orleans Museum of Art (NOMA); and director of development at the Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM). She began her museum career in the curatorial department of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York.
Minto’s academic and curatorial focus is contemporary art of the global African diaspora. She served as an adjunct lecturer in the department of art and art history at Florida International University in Miami. She has written and lectured on topics in the museum field, including exhibitions, collections, institutional advancement, diversity and inclusion as well as contributed essays and articles on contemporary art to exhibition catalogs and other publications. She regularly serves as a visiting critic and juror for creative practices including visual arts, architecture and film.
Minto studied art history at Dartmouth College and received a master’s degree in modern art and critical studies from Columbia University.
“I am inspired and energized by the prospect of engaging a new cultural community rich with history and driven by excellence,” says Minto. “I am honored to lead an institution that is deeply embedded in its community, committed to positive social change and dedicated to nurturing creativity and imagination. I look forward to partnering with the staff, board and community to ensure that CMA remains a relevant and meaningful institution for generations to come.”
As CMA’s executive director and CEO, Minto will lead all aspects of the Museum, overseeing a 155-person staff and $13 million budget. She will collaborate with the board of trustees to shape the organization’s vision for the future, develop sustainable operations and increase the Museum’s impact and accessibility throughout the community.