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Art Museum names new president-CEO

David Mickenberg has been appointed the Priscilla Payne Hurd President and CEO of the Allentown Art Museum of the Lehigh Valley, Dolores Laputka, Chair of the Board of Trustees, has announced.

His appointment was unanimously approved at a special October meeting of the Board of Trustees. The announcement was made Oct. 23.

Mickenberg was until recently CEO of the Taubman Museum of Art, Roanoke, Va., and previously was director of the university art museums at Wellesley College and Northwestern University.

The Allentown Art Museum has been without a CEO since Feb. 28, when Brooks Joyner stepped down after successfully opening the new building expansion.

At that time the search committee retained Marilyn Hoffman of Museum Search & Reference, a museum executive-recruiting firm in Manchester, N.H., to conduct an international search. Since then, the day-to-day affairs of the museum have been overseen by Co-Interim Directors Don Gunn, Treasurer & Director of Administration, and Elsbeth Haymon, Director of Development & Marketing.

The Search Committee, chaired by Plympton, included five other trustees: Sandy Beldon, Roberto Fischmann, Teri Johnson (representing the Society of the Arts), Dolores Laputka, and Jamie Musselman, along with past trustee Annette Merle Smith and Lafayette College Renaissance-art-history professor Diane Ahl.

Mickenberg, a Brooklyn, N.Y., native, was chosen after an international search. He will relocate to the Lehigh Valley with his wife, Judy, and begin his duties Nov. 18.

Margaret "Peggy" Plympton, Chair of the Search Committee and a Trustee, said, "David will bring vision and creative new ideas as we develop the museum's next Strategic Plan.

"His fundraising, administrative, and creative skills will prove invaluable as we parlay Allentown's downtown redevelopment and new arena for the benefit of both the city and the museum."

Said Mickenberg, "I am honored to lead the Allentown Art Museum of the Lehigh Valley and to build upon its world-class collections of European and American art, exciting special exhibitions, and educational programs, which have firmly established the museum's reputation in the region."

Mickenberg completed courses toward a doctorate in French medieval architecture at Indiana University, Indianapolis, and received an M.A. in Art History from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where he specialized in French medieval architecture. He has a B.A. with honors in Art History from Colgate University, Hamilton, N.Y.