Thursday, October 27, 2011

There’s a New Deputy in Town

Welcome Anita Kassof, our new Deputy Director, who began Tuesday at the Museum. She has kept busy for the past two days meeting staff, donors, and trustees; attending no fewer than 11 meetings, the opening of Emma Lazarus: Poet of Exiles, and dinner at the home of our trustee Ingeborg Rennert.

Anita joins us from the Jewish Museum of Maryland (JMM), where she worked for the past decade as associate director, sharing management responsibility for all Museum departments and activities as well as developing exhibitions. Here she will oversee the program areas of the Museum, specifically Collections and Exhibitions, Education, and Public Programs.

During her tenure in Baltimore, she served as co-curator of The Synagogue Speaks and Voices of Lombard Street: A Century of Change in East Baltimore, for which she also co-edited the exhibition catalog. She also curated Lives Lost, Lives Found: Baltimore’s German Jewish Refugees, 1933-1945, edited the accompanying catalog, and produced an award-winning exhibition DVD. She has authored several publications, including Lights & Shadows, a memoir of Holocaust refugee Arnold Fleischmann, and The Synagogue Speaks, a children’s book based on the exhibition of the same name. (It's available in the Pickman Museum Shop.)

Prior to her service at the JMM, Anita served as the associate curator at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM) from 1988-2000, where she helped to develop the Museum’s collections policy and build the Museum’s permanent collection of Holocaust artifacts, documents, and photographs. At the USHMM, she was the associate curator of Assignment Rescue, the Story of Varian Fry and the Emergency Rescue Committee, the inaugural temporary exhibition, which subsequently traveled nationally, and co-authored Flight and Rescue, which chronicled the flight of Polish Jews to Japan and Shanghai.

We are delighted to welcome her to the Museum, and look forward to working with her, learning from her, and attending meetings galore with her in the years to come.

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