Press RoomPhoenix Art Museum selects Koya Leadership Partners to lead national search for CEO

Phoenix Art Museum selects Koya Leadership Partners to lead national search for CEO

Oct, 16, 2019

Board of Trustees and Leadership

Phoenix Art Museum selects Koya Leadership Partners to lead national search for CEO

PHOENIX (October 16, 2019) –Phoenix Art Museum has selected Koya Leadership Partners to lead the national search for the institution’s new Sybil Harrington Director and CEO. The firm has recruited executive leadership at some of the most respected arts and cultural institutions in the world, including the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden at the Smithsonian, The Art Institute of Chicago, the Yale Center for British Art, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. The search, led by Managing Director Naree W.S. Viner, will focus on the recruitment of a seasoned arts leader who will balance building community, strengthening the Museum’s national reputation, and forging a path to long-term financial stability.

“The committee has selected Koya Leadership Partners not only for their proven track record in placing exceptional, talented leaders at the helm of major institutions, but for their focus on diversity and their intrinsic understanding of the unique needs of Phoenix Art Museum,” said Donald Opatrny, a Trustee of the Museum and chair of the CEO search committee. “They understood the complexity of the Museum’s stakeholders and the need for a new chief executive who is skilled at both innovation and developing solid support from many divergent groups.”

Along with the expertise of Koya Leadership Partners and the search committee, the Museum has received feedback from surveys sent to key constituencies, including the artist community of greater Phoenix, Trustees, Docents, Circles of Support donors, Museum Members, and the general public. The results of those surveys will be instrumental in designing the CEO job description.

“During this time of transition for the Museum, as we navigate shifts in donor support and financial challenges, we are optimistic and energized to have the experience, wisdom, and thoughtful leadership of Koya Leadership Partners to work with the Museum as we seek an incomparable and dedicated CEO to lead this institution,” said Koenig, the interim Sybil Harrington Director and Chief Financial Officer.

For more information about the Museum, or for additional resources regarding the search for the Sybil Harrington Director and CEO, contact the Museum’s Press Office at 602.257.2105 or

About Phoenix Art Museum

Since 1959, Phoenix Art Museum has provided millions of guests with access to world-class art and experiences in an effort to ignite imaginations, create meaningful connections, and serve as a brave space for all people who wish to experience the transformative power of art. Located in Phoenix’s Central Corridor, the Museum is a vibrant destination for the visual arts and the largest art museum in the southwestern United States. Each year, more than 350,000 guests engage with critically acclaimed national and international exhibitions and the Museum’s collection of more than 20,000 works of American and Western American, Asian, European, Latin American, modern and contemporary art, and fashion design. The Museum also presents a comprehensive film program, live performances, and educational programs designed for visitors of all ages, along with vibrant photography exhibitions made possible through the Museum’s landmark partnership with the Center for Creative Photography, University of Arizona. To learn more about Phoenix Art Museum, visit, or call 602.257.1880.

About Koya Leadership Partners

Koya Leadership Partners is a leading executive search and strategic advising firm dedicated to leading mission-driven searches. Koya was founded in 2004 on a single belief—The Right Person in the Right Place Can Change the World—and is deeply committed to its clients and the missions they serve. Koya has been ranked in the top 25 executive search firms on Forbes’ “America’s Best Executive Recruiting Firms” list for three consecutive years (2017, 2018, and 2019). Koya is, once again, the top ranked firm on the list that’s exclusively leading mission-driven searches. Additionally, Koya has been named to the Boston Business Journal’s top 50 fastest-growing private companies in Massachusetts for two years in a row (2018 and 2019) and in the top 50 Fastest-Growing Women-Owned/Led Companies™ in 2019 by the Women Presidents’ Organization. The firm’s Founder and CEO, Katie Bouton, was named a finalist for EY’s Entrepreneur of The Year 2018 New England Awards. For more information, visit

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