Sonja Lunde, respected state arts leader and administrator at the Utah Museum of Fine Arts (UMFA), has been promoted to a top leadership position within the Museum. Lunde’s promotion is part of a strategic reorganization that comes as staff re-envision the UMFA for next year’s reopening.
In her new position as deputy director of planning and program, Lunde will have greater responsibility for managing cross-departmental work and collaboration among the curatorial, collections, design, and education and engagement staff, who will now report to her. The goal, says executive director Gretchen Dietrich, is to enhance collaboration among these essential museum departments as they develop exhibitions, installations, and programs aimed at creating meaningful visitor experiences.
“Sonja is an incredibly capable, focused, and passionate museum professional. She is an exceptional manager and possesses a wonderful ability to ask the right questions and to keep the work on track and moving forward,” Dietrich says. “As the Museum continues on an exciting trajectory of re-envisioning and growth, her leadership will be invaluable.”
Lunde has taken on positions of increasing responsibility since joining the UMFA staff in 2008 as a development officer. In spring 2015 she was one of 26 museum leaders selected for one of the Getty Leadership Institute’s prestigious Executive Education Programs. She is currently president of the Utah Museums Association Board of Directors. A Vermont native, she has a BA in art history from George Washington University and is completing an MA in communication at the University of Utah.
The UMFA, located on the University of Utah campus, is the Intermountain West’s most comprehensive fine arts museum. While the Museum is temporarily closed for remodeling, many of its most popular family, adult, and school programs continue at other locations on the University campus, at Salt Lake City Public Library branches, and in classrooms statewide. The Museum will reopen in 2017.