Friday, June 21, 2024

Art museum director and CEO Rich Aste takes on new role

The McNay Art Museum announced that Director and CEO Dr. Richard Aste will depart San Antonio to launch his own coaching practice on the West Coast.

Aste will join the executive coaching team at the University of California, Irvine, as well as joining his partner of 10 years, Max Goodman, in Los Angeles. Out of great admiration for the McNay, Aste will remain in his role through January 2023 to afford ample time for the Board to identify a successor and ensure a smooth transition for staff.

“The Board was saddened but supportive and accepting of Rich’s decision,” said Don Frost, McNay President of the Board of Trustees. “The positive impact he has had on the Museum and the community is immeasurable. Rich has greatly advanced our mission and vision. And thanks to a strong Board, leadership team, and staff, the McNay is positioned for a successful next chapter.”

Dr. Richard Aste is making the move from San Antonio to Los Angeles

Aste was inspired to move into executive coaching after completing his training in positive leadership at the Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan, where he recently earned his MBA. He will draw on strengths in vision setting and gracious change management to activate leaders with passion and purpose. This September, Aste will have served 6 years as the McNay’s third director and first Hispanic CEO.

“I am so proud of everything we have accomplished here,” said Aste. “By creating inclusive art experiences with and for our community, the McNay reflects San Antonio’s rich diversity across the entire campus. I will forever admire the Museum’s brilliant, dedicated Board and staff, and I look forward to sharing all our learnings with leaders across the country.”

In recognition for the positive changes he introduced to San Antonio, Aste was awarded the 2019 Vistage CEO Impact Award. Throughout his tenure, he helped the McNay increase visibility of underrepresented communities within the permanent collection and throughout temporary exhibitions; diversify the leadership team and staff; create a sustainable business model that drove four consecutive years of operating surpluses; secure first-time funding from the Ford Foundation, the Mellon Foundation, and the Henry Luce Foundation; create the 2020-2024 Strategic Plan; complete a $6.25 million landscape master plan; and retain, engage, and expand the Museum’s team throughout the pandemic.

The McNay’s search for its fourth director is co-chaired by McNay Board Vice President, Amy Stieren, and McNay Trustee, Darryl Byrd. The Board of Trustees has retained the national executive search firm, Isaacson, Miller, to support search efforts.

About McNay Art Museum 

The McNay Art Museum engages a diverse community in the discovery and enjoyment of the visual arts. Built in the 1920s by artist and educator Marion Koogler McNay, the Spanish Colonial Revival residence became the site of Texas’s first modern art museum when it opened in 1954. Today, 200,000 visitors a year enjoy works by modern and contemporary artists Deborah Butterfield, Margarita Cabrera, Paul Gauguin, Vanessa German, Vincent van Gogh, Edward Hopper, Joan Mitchell, Alice Neel, Georgia O’Keeffe, Pablo Picasso, Jackson Pollock, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Deborah Roberts, and more. The 25 acres of beautifully landscaped grounds include sculptures by Willie Cole, Robert Indiana, Luis A. Jiménez Jr., Alejandro Martín, George Rickey, Joel Shapiro, Kiki Smith, Tom Wesselmann, and more. 

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