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IMA chooses new CEO from Kentucky art museum

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The Indianapolis Museum of Art has chosen the leader of a Louisville art museum as its new CEO, the IMA announced Wednesday afternoon.

Charles L. Venable, 52, the director and CEO of the Speed Art Museum in Louisville since 2007, will replace Maxwell Anderson, who left the IMA in January to become director of the Dallas Museum of Art. Venable will start the new job Oct. 8.

Founded in 1927, the Speed Art Museum is Kentucky's largest and oldest art museum. It boasts a collection of more than 13,000 works of art and receives more than 180,000 visitors per year.

The museum plans to launch a $79 million expansion later this year. To support that project, it has raised 95 percent of the $50 million sought in an ongoing capital campaign led by Venable.

“Charles has a proven track record as a director, curator and fundraiser at leading museums across the country,” said June McCormack, chair of the IMA Board of Governors, in a prepared statement. “During his five years as director of the Speed, Charles developed and instituted a clear vision for the future of his museum. He also initiated innovative partnerships that broadened the Speed’s reach throughout the Louisville community, which speaks to his understanding of how a museum can serve as an anchor and cultural hub for its city, as the IMA does for Indianapolis.”

Venable previously spent five years as the Cleveland Museum of Art's deputy director for collections and programs.

The native of Texas worked for 16 years at the Dallas Museum of Art before leaving for Cleveland in 2002.

Venable earned his doctorate in American studies at Boston University in 1993. He also has a master's degree in fine and decorative art from the University of Delaware and a bachelor's degree in American history and art history from Rice University.

Anderson led the IMA for more than five years before taking the Dallas position.

The IMA said Venable and his partner, Martin Webb, will live at Westerley, the historic 1920s estate that was once home to the Clowes family and given to the IMA for use as the director’s residence.

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  • Hopeful
    Best of luck, Mr. Venable! You will need it to deal with the morass the previous director left in his wake.

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  1. The deductible is entirely paid by the POWER account. No one ever has to contribute more than $25/month into the POWER account and it is often less. The only cost not paid out of the POWER account is the ER copay ($8-25) for non-emergent use of the ER. And under HIP 2.0, if a member calls the toll-free, 24 hour nurse line, and the nurse tells them to go to the ER, the copay is waived. It's also waived if the member is admitted to the hospital. Honestly, although it is certainly not "free" - I think Indiana has created a decent plan for the currently uninsured. Also consider that if a member obtains preventive care, she can lower her monthly contribution for the next year. Non-profits may pay up to 75% of the contribution on behalf of the member, and the member's employer may pay up to 50% of the contribution.

  2. I wonder if the governor could multi-task and talk to CMS about helping Indiana get our state based exchange going so Hoosiers don't lose subsidy if the court decision holds. One option I've seen is for states to contract with healthcare.gov. Or maybe Indiana isn't really interested in healthcare insurance coverage for Hoosiers.

  3. So, how much did either of YOU contribute? HGH Thank you Mr. Ozdemir for your investments in this city and your contribution to the arts.

  4. So heres brilliant planning for you...build a $30 M sports complex with tax dollars, yet send all the hotel tax revenue to Carmel and Fishers. Westfield will unlikely never see a payback but the hotel "centers" of Carmel and Fishers will get rich. Lousy strategy Andy Cook!

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