Dr. Charles L. Venable, The Melvin & Bren Simon Director and CEO of the Indianapolis Museum of Art, announced Thursday that Kathryn Haigh has been promoted to the position of Chief Operating Officer (COO). Haigh will continue to manage the IMA’s art collection, exhibitions, conservation laboratories, historic sites, security and facilities operations, while playing a leading role in developing and implementing a new 30-year master plan for the institution.
Haigh joined the Indianapolis Museum of Art (IMA) in 2007 after spending 13 years at the Cincinnati Art Museum. In 2010, Haigh was promoted to deputy director for collections and exhibitions. In this role, her responsibilities were enhanced to include logistical oversight of the exhibitions program, as well as management of art registration, photography and research departments. She was a member of the team that implemented the Gloria exhibition in the U.S. Pavilion at the 54th Venice Biennale in 2011, and worked with colleagues to transition the Miller House and Garden in Columbus, Ind. from private residence to historic site. In 2013, Venable further expanded Haigh’s responsibilities and promoted her to deputy director for collections, exhibitions and facilities management.
“When I arrived at the IMA in 2012, I was immediately impressed by Kathryn Haigh,” said Venable. “She is very gifted at streamlining procedures and processes within a complicated organization, using technology, best practices and industry standards. These skills are vital to the development and execution of the IMA’s new master plan, which seeks to deliver extraordinary experiences with art and nature throughout our 152-acre campus. Katie has done an outstanding job during her time at the IMA, and no doubt will continue to do so in her new role as COO.”
Some of the IMA’s future plans include renovating historic structures and galleries and advancing the management of the Museum’s large art collection. While at the IMA, Haigh has been deeply involved with similar projects, including the renovation and installation of the new Contemporary Design Galleries in 2013 and the IMA’s reaccreditation by the Alliance of American Museums (AAM) in 2016. Currently, Haigh is working with staff to draft the IMA’s first-ever Historic Preservation Policy and Comprehensive Facilities Maintenance Plan.
“I came to the IMA in 2007 because I saw an opportunity to expand my knowledge base,” said Haigh. “The development of The Virginia B. Fairbanks Art and Nature Park: 100 Acres and the acquisition of Miller House and Garden were two of several exciting projects on the horizon at that time. Little did I know that when Charles arrived, there would be so much more. I learn something new every day at the IMA—whether it is how to implement a holiday lights exhibition or a computerized maintenance management system. These are the kinds of projects that keep me engaged and looking forward to what comes next.”
With spacious galleries, three theaters and a historic estate surrounded by 152-acres of gardens and parkland, the IMA’s diverse spaces inspire programming that excites and engages a broad public.
“This complex has taken 50 years to build and is one of Indianapolis’ greatest assets,” said Venable. “Kathryn will help to ensure that we continue performing at a high level of excellence for generations to come.”