Wednesday, October 9, 2002
Martha Fuller Wertz, a leader in the field of museum development and university advancement, has been appointed the first director of external affairs at the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, D.C.
Wertz, who starts Oct. 21, will complete the Hirshhorn’s senior management team led by Director Ned Rifkin, joining Kerry Brougher, director of art and public programs, and Beverly Lang Pierce, director of administration. Under Wertz’s leadership, the newly created department will manage all aspects of the museum’s external affairs program, including development, special events, media relations and marketing.
“We are delighted to have Martha with us,” said Rifkin. “She has a proven record for securing major and principle gifts and administering capital campaigns while raising an institution’s profile to increase public understanding and financial participation. She will be a tremendous asset to our staff.”
Virginia Clark, director of external affairs at the Smithsonian Institution, added, “Martha’s skills and experience are essential as the Hirshhorn solidifies its position as the nation’s modern and contemporary art museum. She is an important addition to the Smithsonian.”
Wertz has spent more than 20 years as a professional development officer, most recently serving as vice president of development at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., from August 1999 to February 2002. There she managed a growing and successful development and membership program and provided oversight for a $120 million capital campaign, building a nucleus fund and working closely with key volunteers and trustees.
Previously, she served as assistant dean for development at the School for Humanities and Social Science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Mass., and before that as director of development at Radcliffe College (1993-1998), also in Cambridge. Her career in development began in Virginia at Randolph-Macon Women’s College (1987-1992), Sweet Briar College (1978-1987) and Hollins College (1977- 1978). Wertz earned her master’s degree in English from the University of Virginia and a bachelor of arts degree in art from Randolph-Macon Women’s College.
Wertz lives in Northern Virginia with her husband, Kenneth Lee Wertz, and their children.