April 19, 2018

FloGris Museum Throws a Perfect Party to Welcome New Director, Becky Beaulieu

The new Director of the Florence Griswold Museum Becky Beaulieu greets guests at Thursday’s reception to welcome her to the community. Her husband Patrick Ford stands to her right.

UPDATED 04/16/18: More than 250 people turned out Thursday evening to welcome the new Director of the Florence Griswold Museum, Rebekah (Becky) Beaulieu, at a reception held at the Museum.  Beaulieu succeeds Jeffrey Andersen, who served in the position for more than 41 years prior to his recent retirement.  Beaulieu and Andersen overlapped in the position during February to ensure a smooth management transition.

Beaulieu and her husband Patrick Ford stood in the foyer of the Museum greeting each guest individually as they arrived.  A long, but extremely cheerful, line of people waiting to meet the new Director and her husband soon developed.  Beaulieu and Ford gave each guest as much time as desired maintaining a sense of calm despite the large numbers milling in the foyer.

The new Director of the Florence Griswold Museum Becky Beaulieu listens as Museum Trustee President Ted Hamilton welcomes her.

In the formal part of the evening, Museum Trustee President Ted Hamilton opened the proceedings, saying, “It is my great pleasure to introduce you to the new Director of our Museum.”  He reminisced about how, roughly 18 months ago, “Jeff Andersen, our Director of 40 years, told me that he wanted to retire.” Hamilton commented in a deadpan voice, “After I picked myself off the floor …” prompting roars of laughter, and then continued on a serious note, “… I knew that we had a big task in front of us.”

Search Committee member David Dangremond stands to the left of Museum Director Becky Beaulieu while Chair of the Search Committee John Noyes stands to her right.

Hamilton continued, “For the last year, we conducted a search for a new Director to replace Jeff. I appointed a Search Committee with John Noyes as the Chairman of the Committee. I asked six Museum Trustees to help him. The Trustees are David Dangremond, Lee Prichard, Andy Baxter, Carolyn Wakeman, Jeff Cooley, and Andrea Inglis. I was an Ex-officio Member of the Committee.”

The process was lengthy, Hamilton explained, “First, we searched for a Search Firm, which specializes in Museum and Not-for-Profit Organization Searches. We interviewed 10 firms and choose Korn Ferry, a Global Search Firm. They considered over 100 people throughout the world. We interviewed about 20 people to come up with five finalists.” He continued, “It was a rigorous and very thoughtful search. The team worked very hard for many hours each week.”

Museum Trustee President Ted Hamilton stands alongside the new Museum Director Becky Beaulieu.

Hamilton concluded,  “Our investment in time, work and money paid off. One person was head and shoulders above the rest – we knew that we found the best person for the job – Becky Beaulieu. Our hard work, worked out for us – I hope it does for her too.”

He then asked everyone present to welcome Beaulieu and her husband to the Museum and the community, ending with the words, ” Fellow Members, I present Becky Beaulieu, our new Director!”

Newly appointed Director fo the Florence Griswold Museum Becky Beaulieu stands for a photo with her husband Patrick Ford.

Responding to Hamilton’s warm welcome, Beaulieu spoke directly to the Museum’s members saying she recognized that they serve as “ambassadors or emissaries” for the Museum.  She said she hoped to take the Museum to “new heights” by “working alongside you [the members.]” Then, after thanking the members for their ongoing support, she expressed her gratitude to everyone present for making her and her husband feel, “unbelievably welcome.”

Guests galore gather in the Florence Griswold Museum to welcome new Director Becky Beaulieu.

She ended her remarks by saying simply, “Thank you, thank you, thank you.”

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