Dr. Gina Borromeo and Michelle RhodesBrown will lead the museum beginning in September

Baltimore, MD (May 8, 2024)—The Board of Trustees of the Walters Art Museum announced today that Dr. Gina Borromeo, Senior Director of Collections and Curatorial Affairs & Senior Curator of Ancient Art, and Michelle RhodesBrown, Chief Financial Officer, will together lead the museum during the transitional period following the departure of Julia Marciari-Alexander, Andrea B. and John H. Laporte Director, in September. The museum announced on April 3, 2024 that Marciari-Alexander was appointed the President of the Samuel H. Kress Foundation in New York.

“Through their combined seven years on the Leadership Team at the Walters, Gina and Michelle have both proven their dedication to the continued success of the museum through their execution of its strategic plan, DEAI initiatives, and collections management,” said Peter L. Bain, President of the Walters Board of Trustees. “I am confident in their ability to lead the museum during this transitional period as we search for the next Executive Director of the Walters Art Museum.”

RhodesBrown joined the Walters in 2019 and has shepherded initiatives with museum-wide impact, including the creation of the compensation strategy implemented in 2023 that provided full and part-time employees an average salary increase of 13% across the institution and a new starting base wage of $17 for all hourly employees. RhodesBrown also aided in guiding the museum through the COVID-19 pandemic, allowing the museum to retain all staff and avoid furloughs and layoffs. Borromeo joined the Walters in 2022 after 27 years at the Rhode Island School of Design, where, since 2020, she served as Chief Curator and Curator of Ancient Art. At the Walters, Borromeo has been instrumental in overseeing the museum’s important curatorial, conservation, technical research, and collections departments, bringing with her an expertise in provenance research and ancient art.

The Walters Search Committee will be chaired by Trustee Sheila Vidmar, with trustees Peter L. Bain, Laura Banes, Andre Davis, Guy E. Flynn, Harry Gruner, and Alex Nuñez also serving. The committee has retained Russell Reynolds Associates, a leading executive search firm, to aid in finding a successor to Marciari-Alexander.

“The Walters has accomplished so much in its 90 years, but the work to be done for the museum’s diverse and engaged community continues to expand and evolve,” said Sheila Vidmar, Trustee and Chair of the Search Committee. “The museum has been fortunate to have a wealth of accomplished leaders over its many years serving Baltimore, and we will be endeavoring to find in our next executive director someone who can continue to move forward this great organization into the next 90 years with enthusiasm and vision.”

Michelle RhodesBrown joined the Walters Art Museum in 2019. Prior to her appointment as the National Finance Chair at Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., Michelle led strategic revisions to the budgeting and event registration processes that enhanced operational efficiency and financial viability. She has held roles as a Senior Investment Analyst at Biegel Waller Investment Advisory Services, Investor Relations Manager at lntegra LifeSciences, and ascending roles at Profit Investment Management. In each of these organizations, she honed her expertise in investment analysis, investor relations, and portfolio management. ​​In addition, RhodesBrown serves on a number of boards, including the CareFirst of Maryland. Inc, Maryland State Retirement & Pension Board, and the Pension Oversight Commission in Howard County, MD.

Dr. Gina Borromeo joined the Walters Art Museum in 2022. Previously, she was at the Museum of Art at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), where since 2003 she served as Curator of Ancient Art and then as Chief Curator and Curator of Ancient Art, managing and interpreting its Egyptian, Greek, Etruscan, and Roman collections. During her tenure at RISD, she planned and directed the reinstallation of the Greek and Roman galleries and the Egyptian galleries, and curated the exhibitions Rethinking the Romans: New Views of Ancient Sculpture, Dig the Museum, and Made for Eternity, and co-curated the interdepartmental exhibition entitled Being and Believing in the Natural World. Borromeo has served on the Museums and Exhibitions Committee of the Archaeological Institute of America and on the Council of the Association of Art Museum Curators. She has also served on the Boards of the Humanities Forum of Rhode Island, the Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology, and the Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology and the Ancient World, the latter two at Brown University.

About the Walters Art Museum

The Walters Art Museum is a cultural hub in the heart of Baltimore, located in the city’s Mount Vernon neighborhood. The museum’s collection spans more than seven millennia, from 5,000 BCE to the 21st century, and encompasses 36,000 objects from around the world. Walking through the museum’s historic buildings, visitors encounter a stunning panorama of thousands of years of art, from romantic 19th-century images of French gardens to mesmerizing Ethiopian icons, richly illuminated Qur’ans and Gospel books, ancient roman sarcophagi, and serene images of the Buddha. Since its founding, the Walters’ mission has been to bring art and people together to create a place where people of every background can be touched by art. As part of this commitment, admission to the museum and special exhibitions is always free.

Visitor Information

Admission to the museum is free. The Walters Art Museum is located at 600 N. Charles St., north of Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. For general museum information, call 410-547-9000 or visit thewalters.org.

Free admission to the Walters Art Museum is made possible through the combined generosity of individual supporters, foundations, corporations, and grants from the City of Baltimore, Maryland State Arts Council, Citizens of Baltimore County, and Howard County Government and Howard County Arts Council.