The Board of Trustees of Brooklyn Children’s Museum announced the appointment of Georgina Ngozi as president and chief executive officer of the world’s first museum created expressly for children, effective September 21.
Ngozi succeeds Carol Enseki, who announced in December 2008 that she would step down upon her 20th anniversary at the museum and following its first year of operations in the recently renovated and expanded facility designed by Rafael Viñoly.
William Rifkin, chairman of the Museum’s Board of Trustees and vice chairman of mergers and acquisitions at J.P. Morgan, said that Ngozi, a seasoned education and arts executive who was born and raised in Brooklyn, was the Board’s unanimous choice following an extensive national search.
The appointment is a second homecoming for Ngozi; she previously served as director of education at Brooklyn Children’s Museum, from 2002 to 2006, developing science and arts programs and exhibits, including Eyes of Children: The Rwanda Project, with the students in the Museum’s afterschool “Kids Crew” program, and Romare Bearden’s Li’l Dan, the Drummer Boy, part of a citywide celebration of the artist.
Ngozi also was involved heavily in the development of the new and wildly successful educational programs and exhibits that debuted last fall in the “new” museum, including the World Brooklyn exhibit — a miniature street where children can explore many of the cultures from around the world that thrive in New York City, learning to write in Chinese, trying on adire fabrics from West Africa, designing Carnival costumes for a West Indian parade, and much more.
Ngozi was recruited away from Brooklyn Children’s Museum in 2006 to become executive director of the Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry, a museum in Charleston, SC, which had recently opened.
A proud mother of three grown children, and grandmother of two young granddaughters (including one who is a Brooklyn baby), Ngozi is looking forward to being a Brooklyn Children’s Museum visitor in her spare time. “It will be like having my own focus group,” she joked.Her mother — my “dearest friend and the person who nurtured my growth” — also lives in Brooklyn, not far from the museum.
Ngozi holds a Bachelors of Arts degree in English and African studies from the State University of New York-Binghamton, and is active in the broader museum and arts communities nationally, serving on the Board of Directors of the Association of Children’s Museums, the primary trade organization for the world’s 350 children’s museums.
©2009 Community News Group
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