In recent years, the cultural community has experienced the transition of leadership at a number of important area institutions. GBCA is thrilled that Wanda Q. Draper, Christopher Bedford, and Michael Ross are joining the leadership ranks in Baltimore. Here’s a little bit of information about each of them:
Wanda Q. Draper, Executive Director, The Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture
Wanda comes to the Lewis from WBAL-TV 11 where she was Director of Programming and Public Affairs. As one of the founding board members of the Lewis museum, she served for 10 years as co-chair of the Marketing and Public Relations Committee. An experienced communications specialist, she has held positions at the National Aquarium in Baltimore, the Baltimore Sun, and was a television panelist for PBS.
Christopher Bedford, Dorothy Wagner Wallis Director, Baltimore Museum of Art
Chris comes to Baltimore from the Rose Art Museum at Brandeis University where he served as the Henry and Lois Foster Director. Bedford was recently named the Commissioner for the U.S. Pavilion for the 2017 Venice Biennale, which will present an installation of new work by Mark Bradford. Following his new appointment in Baltimore, the Rose Art Museum will continue as the organizer of the exhibition in Venice co-curated by Bedford and Katy Siegel, curator-at-large for the Rose, and the BMA will support Bedford’s role as commissioner. Chris was also a wonderful host of the Baker Artists Celebration this month at the BMA!
Michael Ross, Managing Director, Center Stage
Ross returns to Center Stage after seven years as the managing director of Westport Country Playhouse. Under his direction, Westport has achieved phenomenal artistic growth, resulting in the Playhouse being named the 2013 Theater Company of the Year by the Wall Street Journal. Ross was also responsible for launching the Playhouse's award-winning Community and Educational Engagement Initiative, opening up the Playhouse campus to hundreds of partnerships and events each year. While at Center Stage, Ross was crucial in bringing Kwei-Armah’s Elmina’s Kitchen to the theater for its U.S. premiere.
The continuity of strong leadership at all of these wonderful organizations and the infusion of new energy and ideas will contribute to success for these organizations, and our broader cultural community. Congratulations and welcome to Wanda, Chris, and Michael!
All the very best,