Carl Van Vechten Gallery To Benefit From $6 Million Grant From The Ford And Walton Family Foundation

Nashville, Tenn., November 30, 2017 – Fisk University Galleries will be among several museums to receive a portion of a $6 million grant to develop a new two-year undergraduate museum leadership development certificate program at the university.

On Tuesday, November 29, The Walton Family and Ford Foundations announced a commitment of $6 million each over the span of three years to support creative solutions to diversify curatorial and management staff in art museums across the United States.

The goal of the Diversifying Art Museum Leadership initiative is to bridge the gap in diversity across the curatorial and programmatic decision making in museums. The Ford Foundation and Walton Family Foundation is pursuing to support innovative strategies and programs to advance diversity by hiring professionals from under-represented populations and offering fellowships, mentorships, and other career development options for diverse professionals.

According to a national study by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, only 16 percent of art museum leadership positions were held by people of color, even though 38 percent of Americans identify as Asian, Black, Hispanic or multi-racial.

“The arts play an essential role in our society by inspiring people of all ages to dream and to imagine new possibilities for themselves, their communities, and the world. To ensure the future health and vibrancy of the arts in America, we need more arts leaders who understand and relate to the deeply varied perspectives and life experiences that weave the rich fabric of our nation,” said Darren Walker, President of the Ford Foundation.