The nonprofit California Museum of Art Thousand Oaks, or CMATO, has hired Roya Alt as its director, replacing former director Tish Greenwood.
Alt joined the museum in March. She has 20 years in the nonprofit and external relations space, and previously served as senior director of public relations for City of Hope Cancer Center. Before becoming CMATO’s director, she handled communications for the museum for about a year.
Alt said transitioning into her new role during the emergence of the coronavirus pandemic was challenging but worthwhile.
“I understand how to work with donors and boards and volunteers – it was somewhat in my wheelhouse,” she told the Business Journal.
Alt called her predecessor a “creative force.” She said Greenwood left CMATO to focus on project-based work, but added she will maintain an ongoing relationship with the museum as a creative consultant.
While CMATO’s gallery space in The Oaks Shopping Center is closed for visitors due to the pandemic, the museum is expanding its digital presence with its first online exhibit called “Life Interrupted,” a collection of pieces from local students based on their experiences in quarantine. Two more collections are slated to launch in August and September: “Defining Beauty,” an internationally juried exhibition featuring work from six artists; and “Car Culture,” a solo exhibition featuring the work of Jonathan Michael Castillo.
Alt said these showings are drawing more viewers to the museum’s website, but aren’t bringing in any revenue like they would in a traditional gallery setting. She said she’s considering ways to monetize the museum’s digital experiences in the future. Also, the museum is accepting donations and exhibition sponsorships on its website.
In addition to the online exhibits, Alt said the museum is using the downtime to establish a “year-round arts education program.”
She added CMATO hopes to open after Labor Day.
“We are really eager to welcome everyone back,” she said. “We think about what we offer to the community through art and making people feel like they can express themselves and maybe heal. Certainly, after COVID, we hope to do a lot of that.”