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North Carolina Museum of Art announces four key hires and a promotion
Jerry Hwang serves as chief operating officer of the North Carolina Museum of Art Foundation, Inc., leading the finance, information technology, human resources, and earned income (food service operations, special events, and retail operations) teams


RALEIGH, NC.- The North Carolina Museum of Art announces four new hires and a promotion across its executive leadership, collections and exhibitions management, and curatorial departments. Jerry Hwang has been named chief operating officer; Joanne Zach has been selected as controller and senior director of finance; Meghan Olis has joined the Museum as director of collections and exhibitions management; Lyle Humphrey has been promoted to associate curator of European art and collections history; and Michele Frederick will start on August 1 as associate curator of European art. These positions complete a slate of key hires in Museum leadership under Director Valerie Hillings, who announced the hiring of Johnny Burleson as chief advancement officer in March after starting in her role on November 1, 2018.

“We are thrilled to launch the next chapter in the NCMA’s history with the support of such talented individuals. They join a team of passionate professionals who are working together with me to develop an exciting future vision and strategic plan for our Museum,” said Dr. Hillings.

Joining the NCMA staff after a search led by firm Armstrong McGuire, Jerry Hwang serves as chief operating officer of the North Carolina Museum of Art Foundation, Inc., leading the finance, information technology, human resources, and earned income (food service operations, special events, and retail operations) teams. He was most recently a director at Verizon Communications, where he led a team of 50 focused on cost management and vendor operations. Previously, he held positions at Bank of America, Nucor, Lowe’s, Ally, Bandwidth, Toshiba, and MetLife, where he honed his expertise in finance, strategy, and technology transformation. He is a musician who has served on the board of the North Carolina Symphony. He has additionally served on the Mecklenburg County ABC Board, where he was a member of the audit and finance committees. Hwang received a BS in business with a focus on finance and a BS in political science from UNC–Chapel Hill.

Joanne Zach has been appointed as controller and senior director of finance with responsibility for managing the accounting, budgeting, and financial planning activities of the North Carolina Museum of Art Foundation, Inc. She was previously a partner at Rankin McKenzie, where she provided interim CFO services to a variety of early stage companies across the life science and biotech sectors. Her key accomplishments included an IPO, an ERP system implementation, and the development of new accounting teams. Zach is a CPA with a distinguished track record of implementing financial systems, designing key metric reporting, streamlining procedures, and strengthening internal controls for companies across the pharmaceutical, manufacturing, and nonprofit industries. She received her BS in accounting from Fairfield University and began her career in auditing with Arthur Andersen LLP.

Meghan Olis comes to the NCMA from the Cleveland Museum of Art, where she managed more than 40 exhibitions and worked with institutions including the Minneapolis Institute of Art, National Gallery of Art, J. Paul Getty Museum, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. As a museum professional with more than 13 years of experience, Olis has led complex exhibition projects and developed innovative models for exhibition and collection management. In this role, she will supervise the collections management, exhibitions management, exhibition design, and art handling departments. Olis will oversee the organization of special exhibitions at the Museum, including those organized in-house and those traveling from other institutions. She will also facilitate the exhibition of works in the NCMA’s free permanent collection, managing gallery rotations and debuting new acquisitions. Olis graduated from the University of Alabama at Birmingham with a BA in anthropology and art history and has a joint MA from Case Western Reserve University in museum studies and art history.

Lyle Humphrey has been promoted at the NCMA from the Ron and Jeanette Doggett Assistant Curator of European Art to associate curator of European art and collections history. With her expertise in medieval and Renaissance Italian art, she will work on collection development, curate special exhibitions focused on the European collection and the collections history of the NCMA, and participate in related programming. Humphrey has held curatorial appointments at the NCMA since 2013: first as a GSK Postdoctoral Curatorial Fellow and most recently as an assistant curator. She has taught at UNC–Chapel Hill and Meredith College and served as a fellow at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. She received a BA from Middlebury College and an MA and PhD in art history from the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University.

Michele Frederick joins the NCMA from the National Gallery of Art’s Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts. With her expertise in 16th- and 17th-century Northern European art, she will be tasked with adding to the NCMA’s European art collection, curating special exhibitions, and supporting the programming surrounding these works of art. She has worked with the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Cleveland Museum of Art, Cincinnati Art Museum, and Berea College, and conducted research on more than 40 collections throughout Europe and the United States. Frederick received a BA from Florida State University and an MA from Case Western University. Frederick will be awarded a doctorate in art history from the University of Delaware in August 2019.

The NCMA announced the hiring of Johnny Burleson as chief advancement officer in early March after a search led by Moss + Ross. He leads the NCMA Foundation’s efforts to broaden its base of support, manage major gifts, and execute fundraising campaigns. Burleson has 18 years of experience in philanthropy, most recently leading the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation’s development of local, state, and national relationships to bring philanthropic and federal resources to North Carolina for stronger, healthier communities. Previously, he worked in higher education philanthropy and advancement at Appalachian State University and UNC–Chapel Hill’s School of Government. Burleson received his BS in textiles and international studies from North Carolina State University.





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