To the Editor:
On behalf of the Board of Trustees, I am writing to inform you that after 16 years, seven as executive director, Clare Smith is retiring this spring from Morven Museum and Garden.
With her commitment to historic preservation, her ability to attract the highest quality staff, her boundless dedication and gentleness of character, Clare has led Morven from a young to a maturing museum. The significant milestones achieved during her directorship include:
• Morven’s audience has increased significantly to an annual visitation of 15,000. Recent annual growth of 32 percent has been the product of increased programming, marketing, and collaborations.
• Recent exhibitions have been “game-changing” and underscore the Museum’s ongoing commitment to excellence. The Pine Barrens: A Legacy of Preservation, Coastal Impressions: Painters of the Jersey Shore, 1880-1940 and the current Charles and Anne Morrow Lindbergh: Couple of an Age have helped transform the museum and raise awareness of this important statewide resource.
• Morven annually offers over 100 public programs including the exceedingly popular recent lectures associated with the Lindbergh exhibit and extending to the July 4th Jubilee, Morven in May, a monthly book group, horticultural classes, and a wonderful collaboration with the Arts Council of Princeton that incorporates special access to Morven’s unique history and site.
• Lastly, under Clare’s direction Morven has fostered collaborations with local non-profit groups whose missions focus on underserved populations and includes Isles, Crisis Ministry of Princeton and Trenton, and TASK. She has been a determined advocate for them and others, as well.
These are just a few examples of how Clare Smith’s commitment to excellence has contributed to the strong trajectory of success Morven is experiencing.
I know you join the Board in extending our grateful thanks to Clare and every good wish for her well deserved retirement. We will miss her.
Georgia T. Schley
Morven Board President