Dr. Kristen Oehlrich Named Museum's Next Executive Director

A special message from Board Chairperson F. Michael Tucker & Search Committee Chair John G. Walsh, III:

Dear Albany Institute friends,

The Albany Institute of History & Art Board of Trustees is pleased to announce that this spring we will welcome Kristen Oehlrich, MBA, Ph.D. as our next Executive Director.

Dr. Oehlrich, a native of Buffalo, New York, was most recently the Founder and President of Triumph of Flora, Strategic Art Advising in New York City. Her appointment comes at a pivotal time in the Institute’s history, as we emerge from the pandemic with excitement for the future.

Dr. Oehlrich will succeed Tammis Groft, who has served as Executive Director since 2013, ending a most remarkable 45-year career with the Institute which she began in 1976 as an Intern. We have been honored to work with Tammis and are pleased to announce that at the March Board of Trustees meeting we presented her with a new title- Director Emerita.

On behalf of the Board, we want to share how delighted we are to have Dr. Kristen Oehlrich lead the Albany Institute of History & Art. As a Board, we were interested in a leader who had both entrepreneurial and academic experience plus a deep appreciation for art, history, and the culture of the Upper Hudson Valley. We also wanted a leader with a proven record of engaging diverse audiences, and someone who demonstrated the ability to embrace and advance the important work of our mission. The thirteen-member search committee was impressed by the remarkable candidates for this position. In the end, we all felt compelled by Dr. Oehlrich’s exceptional energy and leadership skills, which will enable her to be a strong and effective Executive Director. We could not be happier about this appointment.

Prior to her role at Triumph of Flora, Strategic Art Advising, Dr. Oehlrich served as Interim Assistant Director in the Research & Academic Program at The Clark Art Institute in Williamstown, Massachusetts. Before that, she was a Post-Doctoral Teaching and Research Fellow in the Graduate Art History Program at Williams College, Williamstown, Massachusetts. She has over a decade of experience in leadership roles in non-profit institutions. Dr. Oehlrich holds a Ph.D. in the History of Art and Architecture and an executive MBA, both from Brown University. Additionally, she holds a Masters of Art History and Criticism from Stony Brook University and a Bachelor of Arts, Art History, from the State University of New York College at Fredonia.

More from Dr. Kristen Oehlrich, MBA, Ph.D.

Kristen Oehlrich, MBA, Ph.D.

“I am humbled to take a leadership role with an organization that has such a rich history and bright future. The Institute’s mission to connect diverse audiences to the art and culture of our region dovetails with my own commitment to develop programming and exhibitions that educate, inspire, and entertain.

I look forward to building on the solid foundation developed by Tammis Groft and extending the Institute’s legacy while strengthening connections within the Institute and with the public. I also look forward to working with the talented staff and Board of Trustees to deepen the Institute’s impact on the region and around the world.”

George R. Hearst III, Chairman Emeritus of the Albany Institute of History & Art Board of Trustees had this to say about the appointment: “The Albany Institute of History & Art is truly a special place. Our exhibitions tell a rich story, inspire new ways of thinking, and stimulate creativity for the visitors that join us in-person and from around the world with our online collections. Dr. Oehlrich will be an excellent steward and we enthusiastically welcome her to the Institute family.”

Dr. Oehlrich will begin her work at the museum on June 1st. We look forward to introducing her to the community and are excited for this new chapter at the museum.


Mike Tucker
Chairperson, Albany Institute of History & Art Board of Trustees
President, Tucker Strategies


John G. Walsh, III
Chair, Search Committee