Norwalk, CT - The Board of Trustees of the Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum announced Wednesday that Deputy Director Susan Gilgore will succeed President and Executive Director Sheldon Gerarden effective January 1, 2012.
Mr. Gerarden, who began consulting for LMMM in April of 2007, became President and Executive Director in 2008. Prior to LMMM he served as President and CEO of the Greater Norwalk Chamber of Commerce, from 1978 until 2002, and served on Board of Directors of many organizations, foundations and educational institutions including Norwalk’s Maritime Aquarium.
“Mr. Gerarden’s proven organizational abilities have provided the Mansion with a solid framework for a great organization,” said Patsy Brescia, LMMM Chairman of the Board of Trustees. “We are in a far better place today than we were in 2007 because of his contribution.”
Ms. Gilgore started working at the Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum in 2009 as assistant director, overseeing media relations with the goal of increasing the Mansion’s profile regionally as well as nationally.
Ms. Brescia said that she is looking forward to an exciting future under Gilgore’s leadership. “Susan has already attracted major supporters such as the Xerox Foundation,” Ms. Brescia said, “and has been instrumental in raising awareness with the media and the public for our programs. The Mansion will continue its cultural and artistic mission into the third millennium with renewed vigor.”
Born in Paris, France, Ms. Gilgore earned a Ph.D. in political science from the Università degli studi di Milano (Milan, Italy) and began pursuing her love of the arts in New York
City as assistant curator/editor for the Arthur M. Sackler Foundation and the AMS Foundation for the Arts, Science and the Humanities.
She later worked for University Archives in Westport, CT, dealing with research and sales of historical documents and artifacts and in 2003 served as U.S. coordinator for the exhibition and catalog “SuperWarhol,” sponsored by Montecarlo’s Grimaldi Forum, assisting Germano Celant, then senior curator of the Guggenheim Museum.
“I am truly excited to lead this outstanding institution, a cultural centerpiece of our community and a destination throughout Fairfield County of great significance for art, architecture and American history,” Ms. Gilgore said. “There is much to look forward to with such dedicated Trustees and so many enthusiastic volunteers, supporters, friends and elected officials, who have demonstrated time and again their commitment to this national treasure.”
Ms. Gilgore served as marketing director for the Connecticut Grand Opera & Orchestra from 2001 to 2008, where she managed marketing and public relations initiatives, organized press launches of international performers, and coordinated fundraisers and special events.
The Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum, a National Historic Landmark since 1971, is regarded as one of the earliest and most significant surviving examples of French Renaissance Revival architecture in the United States. Completed in 1868 for LeGrand Lockwood and his wife, Ann Louisa, the 62-room granite summer house was the work of Detlef Lienau and contains beautifully inlaid, carved and painted interiors.
Following Mr. Lockwood’s death in 1872, the house was purchased by Charles Drelincourt Mathews, a merchant from Staten Island, in 1876. Members of the Mathews family resided there until the death of Florence Mathews in 1938.
The Mansion offers educational tours pertaining to its history and architecture, Wednesday through Sunday, as well as a variety of programs and special events. For information on its programs, events and rentals, please contact 203-838-9799 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.