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The Ukrainian Museum Welcomes Mykola Darmochwal as New President
Mykola Darmochwal. Photo: Yurij Trytjak.

NEW YORK, N.Y.- This year's annual meeting of The Ukrainian Museum, on June 26, saw the election of a new president of the Board of Trustees, Mykola Darmochwal, and the installation of several new Board members. As in years past, the meeting also provided attending members with a detailed description of the Museum's activities, accomplishments, and financial status throughout the past year and into the current one, as well as a look at the Museum's plans for the future. Members who were not able to attend the meeting will receive this information in the Annual Report (covering the years 2009-2010), which is being mailed to all Museum members.

Professor Jaroslaw Leshko, the outgoing president of the Board of Trustees, kicked off the meeting by recapping the Museum's many achievements in 2010, foremost among them the major multinational exhibition Ukraine-Sweden: At the Crossroads of History (XVII-XVIII Centuries) and the Invitation to a Wedding exhibition, which remains on view through this fall. He also lauded the Museum's extensive educational and public programming and the success of the 35th anniversary fundraising gala. After reminding members that the expansion of the Museum's activities would not have been possible without its move, five years ago, into a much larger, state-of-the-art facility, Professor Leshko noted that maintaining the new premises and sustaining the Museum's multifaceted work will require a coordinated fundraising effort and the addition of a sizable number of new, younger, active members who will take a leadership role in the coming years.

Director Maria Shust then offered a detailed account of the Museum's numerous activities throughout 2010, including exhibitions; special events; a wide variety of public programs, among them lectures, concerts and other performances, films, and book launches; and an extensive selection of courses and workshops for adults, children, families, and school and community groups. She concluded by thanking the Museum's staff for their dedication and collaboration, its volunteers for their generosity of time and spirit, and its donors, foremost among them Self Reliance New York Federal Credit Union, for their staunch support. She also expressed her deep appreciation to Professor Leshko for his countless efforts on behalf of the Museum, a sentiment echoed later by Marianna Zajac, president of the Ukrainian National Women's League of America, in a tribute to his leadership.

Zoriana Haftkowycz, the Board of Trustees' Treasurer, rounded out the presentations with a review of the Museum's financial statements, audited and approved by the accounting firm Drotman & Sawkiw, which were distributed at the meeting and are included in the Annual Report. Like most non-profit institutions, particularly those in the cultural milieu, the Museum is facing a myriad of challenges during these tumultuous economic times – an issue that was addressed repeatedly during the meeting and that was the subject of many questions from the floor. The need to expand the Museum's bases of support and membership was a recurring theme.

The annual meeting concluded with the election of Mykola Darmochwal as the new president of the Board, succeeding the retiring Professor Leshko. A member of the New York area's Ukrainian community, Mr. Darmochwal had held senior-management positions at Johnson & Johnson until his retirement after more than 30 years of service. His pledge to work tirelessly on behalf of the Museum, undertaking a thorough review of its programs, plans, and processes in order to ensure its continued success, elicited sustained applause from the appreciative attendees and Board members. Five new Trustees were also elected: Andrei Harasymiak, Esq., Adrian Hewryk, Professor Renata Holod, Luba Labunka, and Roksolana Misilo.

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