Thursday, December 1, 2022

This foundation has had the same leader for 28 years. Now they’re looking for his replacement

Philip G. Emerson has led the Jamestown Yorktown Foundation for 28 years, but the foundation has announced they are looking for his replacement after he retires. (WYDaily/ Courtesy Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation)
Philip G. Emerson has led the Jamestown Yorktown Foundation for 28 years, but the foundation has announced they are looking for his replacement after he retires. (WYDaily/ Courtesy Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation)

After 28 years, a state agency with roots in the local economy is searching for a new executive director.

The Board of Trustees for the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation, which oversees the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown and the Jamestown Settlement, announced in a news release it is launching a search committee to recruit a new executive director.

Philip G. Emerson is the agency’s third executive director in their 64-year history, and has served in the role for 28 years. He has announced plans to retire and the foundation will now begin the search for his successor.

During his tenure Emerson oversaw the foundation’s investment of $160 million in the foundation’s museums — both facilities and exhibits — that drive the growth the local economy and tourism industry. He led the year-round management and operation of the agency’s two living history museums.

The foundation planned the 2019 Commemoration and was the state agency leading Virginia’s involvement in America’s 400th Anniversary in 2007.

“For 32 years, Phil has guided us in transforming our commemorative sites into nationally acclaimed museums,” said Speaker M. Kirkland Cox, chairman of the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation Board of Trustees, noting his total tenure with the agency. “As the largest provider of structured museum education programs in the Commonwealth, we have garnered key public and private resources to strengthen awareness of Virginia’s role in the United States to a national audience. He has aided us in working with seven governors, key members of the legislature, and many significant partners. While we very much regret his decision to retire, we appreciate his long-term planning to aid us in this important leadership transition.”

The agency hopes to have retained a national recruiting firm in order to begin the search by early 2019.

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