July 13, 2016
TROY, N.Y.—The Board of Directors of the Museum Association of New York (MANY) today announced the appointment of Erika Sanger as Executive Director. Sanger brings with her more than 30 years of experience as an educator and museum professional, and a background in program planning connecting museums and their collections with new audiences. Sanger will provide innovative leadership, vision, and direction for MANY, which represents more than 1,400 museums, zoos, botanical gardens, and aquariums in New York State. MANY’s mission is to strengthen the capacity of the state’s cultural community - delivering innovative training, sharing professional resources, and supporting advocacy of the highest quality.
Sanger will join MANY on August 22. She succeeds Devin Lander, who was recently appointed as the New York State Historian.
“I am excited about the diversity of museum experience and strong focus on museum education that Erika will bring to this position,” said Rob Cassetti, president of MANY’s Board of Directors. “MANY is dedicated to supporting and strengthening New York’s museums as vital educational resources in our state. Having Erika at the helm will only serve to amplify that focus.”
Sanger joins MANY after serving 12 years as the Director of Education at the Albany Institute of History and Art. There, she provided vision for the development of programs for adults, children, schools, and families, focusing on object-based learning and digital initiatives. She has led the institute’s “digital renaissance,” most notably with the launch of a new website and creation of interpretative strategies around hand-held digital devices and interactive media.
“Museums have always been an integral part of my life,” said Sanger. “For much of my professional career, I have educated audiences about and promoted the history, art, and culture of New York State—I know it from Staten Island to Goat Island, and from Plattsburgh to Poughkeepsie. I look forward to working with the MANY board to create a vision and roadmap for an exciting future in our field, and ultimately to strengthen the capacity, awareness, and appreciation of New York State Museums.”
Sanger has gained her extensive arts experience through positions held at renowned institutions including the International Center of Photography, the Jewish Museum, the New-York Historical Society, the Brooklyn Museum of Art, and the Asheville Art Museum in Asheville, NC. She served as Director of Development at Penland School of Crafts in Western North Carolina, where she was actively engaged in the region’s artists’ community, and participated in the design and implementation of campaigns for capital and endowment funds. She has also developed program assessments with Harvard University’s Project Zero, the NC Center for the Advancement of Teaching, and with the education department at the University at Albany. Programs produced under her direction have received funding from major organizations, including the Institute for Museum and Library Services and the National Endowments for the Arts and Humanities.
Sanger holds a B.F.A. from Clark University, in Worcester, MA, and an M.A. from New York University’s Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development.
About the Museum Association of New York
In partnership with diverse museums, heritage and related organizations, the Museum Association of New York (MANY) strengthens the capacity of New York State’s cultural community by supporting high professional standards, strong organizational development, and by providing advocacy, training and flexible information networks so that all may better serve their missions and communities.