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Senior Leaders

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Our senior leaders bring deep and wide-ranging expertise to every facet of our organization, working together seamlessly to ensure the museum serves as a place of gathering, inspiration, and learning for all.

Gene Adams
Chief Information Officer

A member of the Art Institute staff since 1997, Gene oversees teams that serve both the museum and the School of the Art Institute, managing and maintaining our technology infrastructure—hardware and network systems—as well as protecting the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of digital assets throughout the organization.

Amy Allen
Vice President, Engagement

A staff member of the museum since 2003, Amy has served in multiple leadership roles in fundraising and operations and currently leads the Engagement department. This team is centered on revenue and hospitality in multiple capacities: serving visitors and members in the lobbies and exhibitions, developing our robust auditorium programming, managing our multiple dining locations, handling our on-site and online retail shops, overseeing internal and external special events, and managing the museum’s celebrated membership programs.

Denise Banks
Chief Human Resources Officer

Denise joined the Art Institute in 2022, bringing with her more than three decades of human resources experience. As our chief human resources officer, Denise oversees the development and execution of all human resource strategy for both the museum and the school, managing teams dedicated to compensation and benefits; employee relations; talent acquisition; organizational culture; leadership and talent development; diversity, inclusion and belonging; and human resources records.

Francesca Casadio
Vice President and Grainger Executive Director, Conservation and Science

The founder of the Art Institute’s scientific research laboratory in 2003, Francesca leads the teams responsible for the treatment, research, and long-term preservation of our more than 300,000 works of art. The department comprises a team of professionals specializing in nine different disciplines: the conservation of books, frames, objects, paintings, paper, photographs, textiles, and time-based media, as well as a cutting-edge scientific laboratory for the study of art.

Leslie Darling
Executive Vice President and General Counsel

With extensive experience in nonprofit, public, and private sectors, Leslie has guided both the museum’s and School of the Art Institute’s legal and policy matters since joining the organization in January 2020.

Eve Jeffers
Chief Operating Officer

Having joined the Art Institute in 2013, Eve leads our External Affairs teams, which communicate with and care for visitors, members, and donors. In addition, she leads our campus operations teams, which protect people, art, and facilities and tend to our exceptional campus on beautiful urban parkland. All of these teams expertly interface with our community and foster positive visiting experiences.

Gloria Groom
Chair and Winton Green Curator, Painting and Sculpture of Europe, and Executive Director of Initiatives in France

Gloria joined the museum as a curator in 1995 and became the chair of the department of Painting and Sculpture of Europe in 2016, strategically guiding the team in strengthening and expanding the department’s holdings, advancing scholarship, and organizing both critically and popularly received exhibitions. With her extensive experience as a historian of French art, and having been honored by the French government as Chevalier (Knight) in the Legion of Honor, Gloria also stewards the museum’s projects and initiatives in France.

Sarah Guernsey
Deputy Director and Senior Vice President, Curatorial Affairs

Sarah is a key partner in the advancement of our strategic goals and curatorial excellence. Leading the research, care, and interpretation of the museum’s collection, she oversees the departments of Collections and Loans, Conservation and Science, Curatorial Documentation and Research, Experience Design, Interpretation, Publishing and Imaging, the Research Center, and the Ryan Learning Center.

Alex Holt
Executive Vice President, Finance and Administration

Having spent her career serving the private and public sectors in the arenas of infrastructure, budget, and finance, Alex joined the organization in 2018, leading the accounting, human resources, information services, and enterprise software teams that serve both the museum and school.

Sarah Kelly Oehler
Field-McCormick Chair and Curator, Arts of the Americas, and Vice President, Curatorial Strategy

An integral member of the Arts of Americas team since 2002, Sarah not only leads that curatorial department as chair but also, in her role of vice president of curatorial strategy, supports the president and director in developing strategy for the museum’s complex and ambitious curatorial program across all departments.

Chris Murray
Controller
Chris has spent her career focused on not-for-profit accounting and finance and joined the Art Institute in 2013. As controller, she oversees the areas of financial reporting, tax compliance, payables, payroll, receipts, and gift processing for the organization.

David Nacol
Vice President, Philanthropy

Joining us after 20 years and multiple leadership roles overseeing fundraising at Northwestern University, David has stewarded the museum’s Philanthropy department since March 2022 with teams dedicated to advancing major, principal, and institutional giving in support of the museum’s strategic goals.

Matthew Norris
Vice President, Enterprise Software and Analytics

Part of the Art Institute team since 2004, Matt leads the recently established Enterprise Software and Analytics team, overseeing the strategy, implementation, and maintenance of enterprise applications, leading the data and analytics functions across the institution, and consulting on functionality and integration among institutional systems.

Katie Rahn
Vice President, Marketing and Communications

A staff member since 2007, Katie has served in various roles in Marketing and Communications, now leading the department as its vice president. Her teams are responsible for generating attendance and engagement through the development and implementation of fully integrated marketing, communications, media, and partnership plans, as well as strategic oversight of the museum’s brand. 

Thomas Ryan
Vice President, Facilities and Logistics

Beginning his time with the museum in 1997 as an engineer, Tom served in various roles before becoming the head of our Facilities and Logistics department in 2018. With groups devoted to our off-site warehouse, buildings and grounds, as well as environmental health, safety, and sustainability, the Facilities and Logistics team ensures our complex building systems are running optimally and that our entire campus is excellently maintained.

Lucio Ventura
Vice President, Protection Services

With the Art Institute since 1994, Lu oversees teams devoted to ensuring the security and safety of staff, students, and visitors, as well as the museum’s collection and buildings. Lu’s teams include those managing security operations, technology, and administration and planning.

Tao Wang
Pritzker Chair, Arts of Asia; Curator of Chinese Art; and Executive Director of Initiatives in Asia

The leader of the Arts of Asia department as well as curator of Chinese art with the museum since 2015, Tao also works in his role as executive director of initiatives in Asia to raise the profile of our Asian collections and programs and extend our reach and impact globally.

Matthew Witkovsky
Richard and Ellen Sandor Chair and Curator, Photography and Media, and Vice President for Strategic Art Initiatives

Since 2009 Matthew has led the Photography and Media curatorial department. Additionally, he builds strategic relationships with artists, patrons and other partners nationally and internationally—including in Africa, South America, and Eastern Europe—and helps guide modern and contemporary programs more broadly.  

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