Perkins nominated by President Biden National Museum and Library Services Board of the Institute for Museum and Library Services
WINSTON-SALEM, NC (August 12, 2022) – Allison Perkins, executive director of Reynolda House and Wake Forest University Associate Provost for Reynolda House and Reynolda Gardens, was appointed to the National Museum and Library Services Board by President Joe Biden, effective today . Perkins is one of 11 professionals named to the national board of directors. A White House announcement was distributed today and can be viewed under the Briefing Room tab at whitehouse.gov.
The National Museum and Library Services Board, established by 20 USC § 9105a, advises the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) on general policies regarding IMLS’s duties, powers, and authorities with respect to museum, library, and information services , as and the annual selection of recipients of national medals.
“I am honored to have been appointed to the National Museum and Library Services Board,” said Perkins. “I firmly believe in the power of museums and libraries to arouse curiosity and a desire to learn. Such common spaces enrich our lives, broaden our horizons and increase our ability to understand the world in a broader sense. I spent the first half of my career as an art museum educator, and that background informs everything I do as a museum and university administrator. My belief in the power of education is deeply rooted in the way museums can support people to learn, imagine and discover personal purpose. I am honored to have the special privilege of being asked to serve on the board of directors of an organization that celebrates the impact of museums and libraries.”
Reynolda has received two IMLS grants, both through the Museums for America program. In 2012, the museum received $137,698 for a website redesign that rethought the ways it interacted digitally with its visitors. Reynolda also received $143,530 in 2016 to develop a free, downloadable mobile audiovisual tour, Reynolda Revealed, to provide visitors with an opportunity to engage with the stories conveyed through its grounds, art collection and archives.
“During my 39-year career, I have worked for several art museums that have received grants from IMLS, which have been instrumental in helping the institutions fulfill their mission,” said Perkins. “Reynolda is no exception. I am proud of the central funding that Reynolda has received from IMLS, which is enabling us to achieve strategic goals.”
“Congratulations to Allison Perkins on this appointment. It is a true testament to her extraordinary and distinguished career in art museums,” said Dr. Susan R. Wente, President of Wake Forest University. “She is a strong and innovative leader who came to Reynolda 16 years ago. Under her direction, the museum has increased its visibility across the country, brought more attention to its impressive American art collection, and reached out to a diverse audience by expanding its programs and educational offerings. She brings extensive knowledge and experience to the National Museum and Library Services Board. Her appointment also speaks to the national importance of the Reynolda House Museum of American Art.”
A spirited leader and gracious steward of art, Perkins joined the staff of the Reynolda House Museum of American Art in Winston-Salem, North Carolina in 2006 as Executive Director. In 2015 she was appointed Associate Provost of Wake Forest University for Reynolda House and Reynolda Gardens Reynolda is evolving as a unifying destination for visitors of all ages and backgrounds to experience belonging through peaceful contemplation, play, work and study. Annually more than 180,000 visitors from North Carolina and beyond visit the historic 1917 property, which includes the highly regarded art museum, formal gardens and public spaces. Reynolda’s affiliation with Wake Forest University has grown in phases, and the historic property and school share a liberal arts foundation for the common good. Perkins sees herself as an audience advocate, and in her role at Reynolda, she upholds the institution’s mission to connect people to the beauty and complexity of American history through the integration of art, nature, and history.
Perkins spent the first half of her career in art museum education. Before joining Reynolda, she was Associate Director of Education and Interpretation at the Baltimore Museum of Art, joining from her previous position as Director of Education at the Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth. Perkins received a Bachelor of Arts in art history from Lake Forest College and a bachelor’s degree in art history from the University of Chicago. She is a graduate of the Getty Leadership Institute, a continuing education program for museum professionals.
About the Institute for Museum and Library Services
The Institute for Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s libraries and museums. We fund, support, and empower America’s museums, libraries, and related organizations through grantmaking, research, and policy development. IMLS envisions a nation where individuals and communities have access to museums and libraries to learn from and be inspired by the trusted information, ideas and stories they contain about our diverse natural and cultural heritage. To learn more, visit imls.gov and keep following us Facebook and Twitter.
Located on 170 acres in Winston-Salem, NC, Reynolda includes the Reynolda House Museum of American Art, Reynolda Gardens and Reynolda Village Shops and Restaurants. The museum presents a renowned art collection in a historic setting unlike any other: the original 1917 interiors of the 34,000-square-foot home of Katharine and RJ Reynolds. Its collection is a chronology of American art, and special exhibitions are held in the museum’s Babcock Wing Gallery and in historic home rooms. The gardens serve as a 134-acre outdoor garden oasis open to the public year-round, complete with colorful formal gardens, nature trails and a greenhouse. In the Village, the property’s historic buildings now house a vibrant mix of boutiques, restaurants, shops and services. Plan your visit below reynolda.org and use the free Reynolda Revealed mobile app to tour the property for yourself.