July 02--NORFOLK -- The Chrysler Museum of Art has selected Erik H. Neil as its next director.
Neil, 50, is director of the Academy Art Museum in Easton, Maryland, where he has served since 2010.
"Erik Neil comes to us with a strong sense of the essential role a museum plays in its community and a history of deep personal engagement in each place he has served," said Peter Meredith, outgoing chair of the board of trustees. "He is a perfect fit for the Chrysler, given our focus on serving the Hampton Roads area."
Neil will begin his new job on Oct. 6 and will replace retiring director William J, Hennessey. He has served as director of the Chrysler for 17 years, the longest standing director in the museum's 81-year history.
"With his strong art history background and solid management experience, Erik Neil is an inspired choice to lead the Chrysler into its next chapter," said Hennessey.
Neil began his museum career in 1999 as director of the Newcomb Art Gallery of Tulane University in New Orleans, where he also served as an adjunct art history professor.
In 2006, after a short stint as director of exhibition and programs at the American Federation of Arts in New York, Neil became executive director of the Heckscher Museum in Huntington, N.Y. There he led a nine-month, $1.5 million museum modernization and initiated its reaccreditation process with the American Association of Museums.
Neil's education includes a bachelor's degree in modern European and American history from Princeton University, and both a master's degree and doctorate in the history of art and architecture from Harvard University. He also earned a certificate in museum management from the prestigious Getty Leadership Institute in Berkeley, Calif.
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