Museum Trustee Association

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Jim McCreight 
Museum Trustee Association 


Friday October 21, 2011 from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM EDT

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The Frick Collection 
One East 70th Street, New York City 

Driving Directions 

The Frick Collection, New York City

Museum Trustee Association Trustee/Director Forum Friday, October 21, 2011 at The Frick Collection,      New York City

Sponsored by 

Join your fellow Trustees and Directors at the next Museum Trustee Association Trustee/Director Forum in New York City on Friday, October 21, 2011.

Limited to 80 attendees this Forum will bring together Trustees and Senior Museum Staff from the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Share ideas and solutions to museum issues facing Trustees and Directors from small to large museums.

The schedule is:

9:00 AM-9:20 AM   

Gather for coffee and networking

9:20 AM Welcome

9:30-10:30 AM


The Balance of Power: Potential Conflicts of Interest for the Collector-Trustee

 Moderator: Martin Gammon, Bonhams & Butterfields Washington, DC

Panelists:   Scott Hodes, Senior Counsel at Bryan Cave, Chicago, IL

Mr. Hodes practices in the field of art law and represents a number of prominent artists, dealers, and collectors in all aspects of their  business. He is past president and a director of The Lawyers for the Creative Arts and is a trustee of the National Museum of Mexican Art.

                   Steven Thomas, Partner at Irell & Manella LLP, Los Angeles, CA

Mr. Thomas has advised on the many varied aspects of the purchase, auction, sale, and collection of fine art, cultural property,fine collector cars, memorabilia and collectables, including national international transactions among private collectors, dealers, museums, galleries and auction houses.  

10:30-10:40 AM Coffee Break

10:40-11:40 AM


What Makes A Great Trustee?

Moderator: Thomas Finkelpearl, Director Queens Museum of Art

                  Arnold Lehman, Director Brooklyn Museum

                  Margarita Aguilar, Director El Museo del Barrio

11:40-NOON      Buffet Lunch served

           Noon: Special Luncheon Speaker!  


Robert K. Wittman 

Sponsored by


Robert K. Wittman joined the FBI as a Special Agent in 1988 and was assigned to the Philadelphia Field Division. As a result of specialized training in art, antiques, jewelry and gem identification, he served as the FBI’s investigative expert in this field. During his 20 year career with the FBI he recovered more that $300 million worth of stolen art and cultural property resulting in the prosecution and conviction of numerous individuals. In 2005, he was instrumental in the creation of the FBI’s rapid deployment Art Crime Team. He was named as the ACT’s Senior Investigator and instructed the team members in how to conduct cultural property investigations. He has represented the United States around the world conducting investigations and instructing international police and museums in investigation, recovery and security techniques.

Mr. Wittman is the author of Priceless: How I Went Undercover to Rescue the World's Stolen Treasures. Thanks to our sponsor,AXA Art, a copy of his book will be given to each conference attendee!

By the FBI’s accounting, Wittman saved hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of art and antiquities. He says the statistic isn’t important. After all, who’s to say what is worth more—a Rembrandt self-portrait or an American flag carried into battle? They’re both priceless. 

Among the cases detailed in PRICELESS are:

 • Going undercover in Madrid to extract $50 million worth of Goya and Brueghel paintings from a Spanish mobster

• Catching an appraiser turned con man who used PBS’s Antiques Roadshow to steal countless heirlooms from war heroes’ descendants

• Rescuing the Rodin sculpture that launched the Impressionist movement

• A case that involved three countries, wire taps, Hollywood mobsters, and a trio of punks from Iraq, which resulted in the rescue of two Renoirs and a Rembrandt worth $40 million

• Recovering the golden armor of an ancient Peruvian warrior king

• Saving an original copy of the Bill of Rights that had been believed lost for a hundred years

 And in his final case, Wittman called on every bit of knowledge and experience in his arsenal to tackle his greatest challenge: working undercover to track the criminals behind the century’s largest unsolved art crime, the $500-million-dollar theft from the Isabella Gardner Museum in Boston

PRICELESS is a real-life international thriller to rival The Thomas Crown Affair, told by a man who has seen it all . . . and can finally reveal what he knows.  

Don't miss this opportunity to hear Robert Wittman at the MTA Forum. Lunch is included with your Forum registration.

1:10-2:10 PM


Moderator: Inge Reist, Director of the Center for the History of Collecting, The Frick Collection 

                 Christiane Fischer, CEO AXA Art

                 Alan Fausel, American Paintings Bonhams & Butterfields

2:10-3:10 PM


Moderator: Sandra Kidd, Partner Alexander Haas, Atlanta, GA

                  Kristen Denner, Whitney Museum of Art

                  Gayle S. Camden, Detroit Institute of Arts


3:15-4:15 PM    Docent led tour of The Frick Collection

Thanks to our sponsors we have been able to keep the registration fee's very low:

              $99 for Museum Trustees

              $69 for Directors and Senior Museum Staff

              Free to current MTA Patrons

              $1000 for new MTA Individual Patrons

              $1500 for new MTA Couple Patrons

All registrations include lunch.

Remember, only 80 seats available so register soon!

 Special tours of private collections are being arranged for our MTA Patrons and details will be available soon. If you have questions about Patron level memberships or the Forum please call MTA President Jim McCreight at 1-888-264-2688.

Go to the registration link below and register by credit card. Thanks, and we hope to see you in New York City in October.