July 21, 2022 – The non-profit practice from DHR Global has helped place Tabitha Schmidt as the executive director of the Museum of Arts & Sciences (MOAS) in Daytona Beach, FL. She succeeds interim executive director Maria Hane and former executive director Andrew Sandall. The assignment was led by James Abruzzo, managing partner, global non-profit practice and principal Michele Baird Counter of DHR.
“After a nationwide search we have unanimously selected Tabitha Schmidt as our choice for the next executive director of the Museum of Arts & Sciences,” said Katherine Hurst Miller, MOAS board of trustees president. “Tabitha comes to MOAS with a proven record of leadership, collaboration, passion for museums, and community involvement. The MOAS board of directors is excited for the future of the museum in Tabitha’s capable hands. I would also like to give a special thanks to our expert search consultants at DHR Global, James Abruzzo and Michele Counter, as well as the MOAS search committee.”
Ms. Schmidt previously served as chief executive officer of the Powell Gardens, Kansas City’s botanical garden, for the past six years. During her tenure at there, she guided the organization through a shift in strategic direction that resulted in the highest attendance and membership numbers in its history. She also stewarded the Kingsville, MO-based organization through a master planning process that is now guiding its future direction.
Ms. Schmidt has a well-rounded background working for non-profits, cultural organizations, and educational institutions, having held such positions as the director of cultural arts at the Jewish Community Center, executive director of the Museum of Texas Tech University, director of the School for Continuing and Professional Studies at the Kansas City Art Institute, associate educator of adult learning/manager of tour programs at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, director of instruction/arts partners coordinator at Kansas City Young Audiences, and student activities coordinator/adjunct art and art history faculty at Maple Woods Community College.
Ms. Schmidt joins MOAS as the organization embarks on developing its next five-year strategic plan. She will also work to expand the impact of the museum and position the organization as a vital education resource, partner, and collaborator locally, regionally, and nationally. In addition, Ms. Schmidt will work to increase awareness of the museum, its collections, and programs to drive increased attendance and participation. “I am truly honored to have been chosen as the new executive director,” Ms. Schmidt said. “Working with multi-disciplinary collections is a passion of mine, and MOAS offers endless opportunity.”
The Museum of Arts & Sciences is the primary art, science, and history museum in Central Florida. The area’s largest museum, MOAS is nationally accredited by the American Alliance of Museums and is a Smithsonian Institution Affiliate. “The Museum of Arts & Sciences is one of those rare gems containing a great collection, a new museum building, and a board that has recognized the value of endowing such a treasure,” said Mr. Abruzzo.
Since 1989, DHR Global has been a leading, privately held provider of executive search solutions with more than 50 wholly-owned offices spanning the globe. DHR’s consultants specialize in all industries and functions, providing senior-level executive search, management assessment, and succession planning services tailored to the qualities and specifications of its client base.
Mr. Abruzzo has 40 years of experience as an executive search and management consultant to non-profit organizations, His clients span the non-profit spectrum — cultural organizations, zoos and aquariums, national health services, universities, social services, international relief organizations, and trade associations. Having completed over 500 senior executive searches, he is recognized for his work with non-profit boards on succession planning, strategy, and executive compensation. He is also responsible for recruiting new partners, developing intellectual capital, and representing DHR at non-profit industry forums.
Ms. Counter is a principal in DHR’s non-profit practice. She specializes in non-profit executive search, working with clients in the U.S. and internationally. The assignments she works on include searches for non-profit president/chief executives, as well as senior leadership in finance and administration, fundraising, marketing, education, programs, and other areas. Ms. Counter has also assisted non-profits with a variety of consulting projects concerning strategy, governance, and non-profit compensation. She has worked with arts and cultural organizations, social service non-profits, international development NGOs, health-related organizations, foundations, zoos and aquariums, associations, and educational organizations including colleges and universities. Ms. Counter has specialized in non-profit executive search for over 10 years.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media