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American Alliance of Museums Names Dr. Nicole Ivy as Director of Inclusion

Category: Press Release


February 2, 2017

Nicole Ivy
Dr. Nicole Ivy

ARLINGTON, VA–The American Alliance of Museums (AAM), the only organization representing the entire scope of the museum community, today named Dr. Nicole Ivy as its new director of inclusion. In this newly created position within the executive office, Dr. Ivy will lead the Alliance’s strategic initiatives around diversity, equity, accessibility and inclusion.

“We’re proud to bring Nicole’s extraordinary talent and experience to this strategic priority for the Alliance and for our field,” said Alliance President and CEO Laura Lott.  “We’re asking museums to devote more resources to inclusion, starting with their own staff, board and leadership, and with Nicole’s help we can lead by example and ensure inclusivity in AAM’s policies and practices.  Through her research, advisory, and training roles, Nicole will be a tremendous resource for museums.”

Dr. Ivy first joined the Alliance team in July 2015 as a museum futurist under a fellowship of the Mellon Foundation and American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS).  In that role she studied and published on future museum trends, specifically focused on diversity and the future of labor in the field. She has served as a featured speaker at several conferences including “The Future of Libraries and Museums” by the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS), and the Alabama Association of Museums’ Annual Meeting. Most recently, Dr. Ivy was part of a 13-day, 10-city road trip for the AAM’s Center for the Future of Museums, visiting more than 20 museums and several schools in seven states to collect stories and examples of museums that play a starring role in their communities’ PreK-12 education programs.

“I look forward to making inclusion a greater focus of how the Alliance does its work,” said Dr. Ivy. “I suggested the word ‘inclusion’ for the job title based on a survey of multiple professional associations, and of the museum field. Inclusion focuses on an outcome. It’s not only about museums getting an assortment of people, but also making sure that multiple perspectives get a voice – in the collections, in the exhibitions, in the community outreach, and, yes, in the staff and boardroom, too.”

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Dr. Ivy will start in her new role on July 13, upon conclusion of her Mellon/ACLS Public Fellowship.  Among the projects she’s exploring is a partnership with a technology company and several pilot museums to test an online tool that could help museums reduce unintended bias in their hiring processes.
Dr. Nicole Ivy earned her Ph.D. in African American Studies and American Studies from Yale University, and has done Post-Baccalaureate coursework at Cornell University. She earned her undergraduate degree in English from the University of Florida.

About the American Alliance of Museums

The American Alliance of Museums has been bringing museums together since 1906, helping to develop standards and best practices, gathering and sharing knowledge, and providing advocacy on issues of concern to the entire museum community. Representing more than 30,000 individual museum professionals and volunteers, institutions, and corporate partners serving the museum field, the Alliance stands for the broad scope of the museum community. For more information, visit


Media Contact:

Joseph Klem
Director, Public Relations
American Alliance of Museums

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