AT BACKUS MUSEUM
Following a national search, the board of directors of the
Backus Museum in Fort Pierce has named J. Marshall
Adams as its new executive director.
Adams, who has 20 years of experience working for art
museums, replaced longtime director Kathleen Fredrick, who
retired to spend time in Central America and write.
Adams was director of education for nine years at the Vero
Beach Museum of Art and previously held positions with the
Museum of Contemporary Art in Jacksonville and the High
Museum in Atlanta.
“It worked out perfectly,” said Dan Nelson, board treasurer
and member of the executive search committee. “We looked
all over the country and found the best person for the job
right in our own backyard.”
Adams received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Tulane
University in New Orleans and a Master of Science degree
in education from the Bank Street College Leadership
in Museum Education Graduate Program in New York.
Additionally, he was also in the inaugural cohort of the Getty
Leadership Institute’s Museum Leaders: The Next Generation
program. He and his wife, Carrie, and their two children live
in Vero Beach.
Adams’ appointment became effective in late September
after he and Fredrick worked to create a smooth transition for
the museum’s season opening.
“The Backus Museum is fortunate
to have Marshall as its new executive
director,” board president Janie
Hinkle said. “Kathleen has done so
much for us over these years and she
and Marshall are committed to working
together for a smooth leadership
transition. We are proud of our past
accomplishments and with a marvelous
new executive director coming in,
the board looks forward to taking the
museum to the next stage of excellence
in its remarkable history.”
Fredrick became director in 1999
and oversaw significant expansion of
the museum at 500 N. Indian River
Drive. Most recently, she spearheaded
a $1.4 million expansion that successfully
doubled the museum’s exhibition
space and ability to showcase the
work of A.E. Backus. Additionally, she
developed a new permanent gallery to
recognize and honor the relationship
of Florida’s legendary Highwaymen
painters to Backus, their artistic mentor.
J. Marshall Adams, former
at the Vero Beach Museum
of Art, is the new
executive director of the
Kathleen Fredrick has
retired to spend time
in Central America