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Big Answers from Experts: A Series on Board Excellence

This series, launched in the summer of 2020 by AAM’s Inclusion department, is a complement to our Facing Change: Advancing Museum Board Diversity & Inclusion initiative. These events provide strategies, resources, and best practices on board governance for museums, with actionable workshops for Facing Change participants to discuss steps, actions, and issues. Brickson Diamond will moderate each virtual event’s discussion topic, with guest speakers sourced from Big Answers’ network of accomplished, diverse, and talented C-Suite executives.

While the webinars will be open to all members, the complimentary workshops for each topic are available exclusively to museums participating in AAM’s Facing Change initiative. Workshops are facilitated by guest speakers and allow museums to have a customizable learning opportunity in an intimate environment with institutions working through similar challenges. The recordings and transcripts of each upcoming webinar discussion will be available for AAM members after the live event. Check the links below for resources from past events.

Upcoming Events:

Building Relationships and Engaging Young Leaders Webinar (August 11, 2021)

As cultural institutions continue to build more equitable and inclusive board cultures, there must be considerations for how organizations think about transitioning junior board members to more senior positions. Join host Brickson Diamond for the fourth installment of Big Answers from Experts: Conversations on Board Governance, with guest Rhoden Monrose of the CariClub, as they will discuss best practices for developing relationships and engaging with young leaders.

Registration is restricted to museum CEOs and Facing Change participants with priority registration for Facing Change participants. A recording of this webinar will be made available to AAM members and Facing Change participants.

Past Events in the Series:

Discussion 1: Diversity & Good Governance Webinar (July 22, 2020)

Developing greater board diversity is something most museum CEOs and Board Chairs yearn to accomplish, and yet many museums struggle to make incremental changes to their boards’ compositions. How can museums continue to increase greater representation on their boards?

The recording of this webinar is available to AAM members and Facing Change participants.

The accompanying workshop held October 8, 2020, was restricted to museum CEOs and Facing Change participants with priority registration for Facing Change participants. 

Discussion 2: Recruiting for Museum Board Diversity Webinar (December 2, 2020)

Finding and recruiting diverse senior-level leaders to be on your board may feel like a daunting proposition for many. Join host Brickson Diamond for the second part of the series, Big Answers from Experts: A Series on Board Excellence. He hosts guests Debra Lee and Rabia de Lande Long of The Monarchs Collective, and together they’ll discuss the best ways to connect with and attract diverse candidates to boards. Lee (former chairman and CEO of BET Networks) and Long (Lee’s long-time executive coach) are experienced non-profit and corporate board members. They have formed The Monarchs Collective in order to help organizations that genuinely seek to diversify, enhance, and balance their senior leadership ranks and boards of directors.

The recording of this webinar is available to AAM members and Facing Change participants.

The accompanying workshop held March 16, 2021, was restricted to museum CEOs and Facing Change participants with priority registration for Facing Change participants.

Discussion 3: Experiential Fundraising (March 9, 2021)

Developing relationships and being prepared to make an ask is only half the battle when it comes to fundraising. Join host Brickson Diamond for the third installment of Big Answers from Experts: A Series on Board Excellence, with guest Tisha Hyter of the Orr group, as they will discuss the best practices for developing organic funder relationships and creative fundraising approaches in the COVID-19 era.

The recording of this webinar is available to AAM members and Facing Change participants.

Questions about this series?

If you are interested but have questions about joining Facing Change, The American Alliance of Museums encourages museums to submit a Letter of Interest. The form requests the following information:

  • Basic museum information, including type, budget, and mission

  • Level of participation (if any) in Continuum of Excellence programs

  • The size and meeting frequency of your museum’s governing body

  • Presence/absence/frequency of discussions on DEAI (if any)

If you have questions after submitting your Letter of Interest form, please contact We will schedule an informational Zoom conversation to share additional information and address any questions.

This program is made possible through the support of The Andrew W. Mellon, Alice L. Walton, and Ford Foundations.

Meet the series’ host:

Headshot of Brickson DiamondBrickson Diamond is CEO of Big Answers, LLC, which consults on diversity and inclusion strategy for clients in entertainment, technology, and asset management, generating new partnerships and leveraging impactful connections. He previously served for five years as COO of The Executive Leadership Council, the preeminent member organization of Black executives in the Fortune 1000. Brickson began his career and spent 15 years as a marketing and client services executive with The Capital Group Companies, a $2 trillion global asset management firm. He is a founding board member and chair of The Blackhouse Foundation, which provides pathways for Black multi-platform content creators into career opportunities within film, television, digital, and emerging platforms. Brickson is a trustee of Brown University, where he chairs the Communications, Alumni and External Affairs Committee, the Middlesex School, where he chairs the board DEI Committee and Tides. He is a graduate of Brown University and the Harvard Business School.

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