(Morristown, NJ, April 2023) — The Morris Museum announced this week that it has appointed Tom Loughman as its next Executive Director. Loughman, a global arts professional with extensive experience in museum management, will begin on Monday, May 1, 2023. Board Chair Edward von der Linde said on the unanimous decision: “We couldn’t be more excited about Tom’s taking the helm at the Morris Museum. We are eager to see him bring his ambitious plans for exhibition programming to the Museum. Tom brings a record of celebrating collections and restoring and harnessing buildings and campuses that we are confident will be of benefit to our community. The Morris Museum’s Trustees and staff look forward to working with Tom to continue enabling robust teaching and learning, fostering meaningful experiences (in person and online), and igniting curiosity through powerful engagement with objects and ideas.”
A series of transformative executive and curatorial roles at distinguished art museums has equipped Loughman with the perspective and experience to lead the Morris Museum to its next period of engagement and influence. His five years as Director and CEO of the Wadsworth Atheneum (Hartford, CT) were distinguished by a series of critically-acclaimed exhibitions, the creation of a free access program for the city’s residents, major acquisitions and gifts, and the modernization of the museum’s digital and physical presence. Earlier, as Associate Director of the Clark Art Institute (Williamstown, MA), he designed and led the museum’s global program agenda during a period of campus expansion and revitalization.
“The Morris Museum is the region’s most impactful, community-focused cultural institution,” said Loughman. “I am energized by the museum’s commitment to connecting with people throughout New Jersey and nationally. I look forward to stewarding its mission and leading the Morris Museum as we deploy the visual arts as a lens for understanding history, the natural world, and culture. Working with such an outstanding staff and Board, at an institution important to me since childhood, is an honor.”
Loughman’s perspective on museums is informed by three decades of professional contributions within the wider arts and culture sector. Since 2017 he has served as co-chair of the Board of the United States National Committee of the International Council of Museums. He also has been a thought leader in the Association of Art Museum Directors and the American Alliance of Museums. His service work extends to a variety of civic and art-world organizations as well as with youth and education. Trained as a historian of European art, he began his curatorial career at the Philadelphia Museum of Art and continued at the Phoenix Art Museum, where he served as Curator of European Art and Assistant to the Director for Exhibitions. Other appointments include a variety of curatorial, research, and teaching roles. Born in Morristown, NJ, he is a graduate of Delbarton School (1989), Georgetown University (A.B. 1993), Williams College Graduate Program in the History of Art (M.A. 1995), and Rutgers University (Ph.D. 2003).
The nationwide search was led by a committee of Morris Museum Trustees chaired by Barry Jaruzelski and conducted with professional assistance from Daniel T. Keegan of Museum Leadership Placement.