Dr. Katherine E. Fleming, an accomplished scholar and internationally recognized scholar of Mediterranean history, religion and culture, will be the next president and CEO of the J. Paul Getty Trust, the board announced Tuesday. administration.
Dr. Fleming, the Alexander S. Onassis Professor of Hellenic Culture and Civilization and Professor of Hellenic History and Studies at New York University, joins the Getty after serving as Vice President of New York University from 2016. She will join Getty on August 1, succeeding Jim Cuno, who will retire this summer after more than 10 years as Getty’s chairman and CEO.
“Katy Fleming is a distinguished scholar and educator. She is a visionary and experienced leader, with a deep understanding of global cultures and their importance in uniting us all,” said David Lee, Chairman of Getty’s Board of Directors. “At this critical time in our world, she is the ideal leader to guide one of the world’s largest and most complex cultural organizations, and to continue Getty’s trajectory of supporting and sharing visual arts and culture. culture for the greater public good.”
As CEO, Dr. Fleming will oversee all local, national and global operations of the Getty Trust, which has 1,400 employees, and its four component programs: The Getty Foundation, which makes global philanthropic grants supporting the visual arts; the Getty Research Institute, home to scholars and the world’s largest art archive in the Getty Library; the Getty Conservation Institute, specializing in conservation science and training for cultural preservation worldwide; and the J. Paul Getty Museum. The museum operates in two locations: the Getty Center, housing pre-20th century European art and photography in Los Angeles; and the Getty Villa, housing Greek, Roman, and other antiquities in Malibu.
Accepting the nomination, Fleming said, “The Getty’s mission is more vital than ever, as environmental degradation and global upheaval threaten the world’s artistic and cultural heritage in unprecedented ways. Getty’s remarkable ability to make an impact in Los Angeles and around the world makes it both a tremendous honor and a responsibility to be asked to assume his leadership. I look forward to working with the many experts at Getty to further its mission and affirm the critical relevance of art and the humanities to our diverse shared pasts and our collective future.
Since 2004, Dr. Fleming has held administrative positions of increasing scope and responsibility at NYU, one of the nation’s largest and most prestigious research universities with more than 66,000 students. Fleming was instrumental in the emergence of NYU as one of the most global institutions in the world and for several years was responsible for its strategy in Europe. She joined the NYU faculty in 1998 as an assistant professor, became an associate professor in 2004, and an Onassis professor in 2007. In addition to her appointment in the Department of History, she is an associate in the Department of Hebrew and Judaic Studies and in the Department of Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies.
Dr. Fleming’s extensive scholarship has focused on Mediterranean, Jewish and Greek history and religion, including the emergence of the modern Greek state; the reception of classical antiquity; and the role of attitudinal change toward religious affiliation. She speaks seven languages and is co-founder of a multi-year oral history project in Greece that has collected 55,000 stories, supported by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation.
Dr. Fleming received her bachelor’s degree in religion from Barnard College in 1988, her master’s degree in religion from the University of Chicago in 1989, and her doctorate in history from the University of California, Berkeley in 1995. She began her academic career in Southern California. in the 1990s, working as a lecturer at Cal State San Bernardino; UC Riverside; Loyola Marymount University; and UCLA before joining NYU.
The recipient of numerous national and international academic honors and awards, Dr. Fleming was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2021.
From 2007 to 2011, Fleming was in residence at the École Normale Supérieure in Paris, where she served as Associate Professor in the Department of History. She currently sits on the Board of Directors of the Chancellery of the Universities of Paris.
In Greece, Fleming served as President of the Board of the University of Piraeus (2012-2016) and she holds honorary doctorates from the University of Macedonia and the Ionian University. She received honorary Greek citizenship of the Hellenic Republic in 2015.
“Katy Fleming’s high energy, intellect and entrepreneurial spirit, combined with her passionate commitment to advancing understanding of global cultures, make her the ideal leader for the Getty Trust,” said the director Bruce Dunlevie, chair of the search committee. “Katy was our unanimous choice after an exhaustive international search. Under her strategic leadership, we expect Getty to further expand its impact in sharing and preserving our shared human history.
The board search committee also included directors Mary Schmidt Campbell, Ronald Spogli, Pamela Joyner and board chairman David Lee.