Academy Museum Taps Bill Kramer as New Director

Bill Kramer - Publicity - H 2019
Courtesy AMPAS

The former managing director of development and external relations at the museum replaces Kerry Brougher, who stepped down in August.

The Academy Museum has found a new director.

Bill Kramer will replace Kerry Brougher, who in August stepped down from his post after five years, the museum's board of trustees announced Thursday. Kramer, the former managing director of development and external relations at the Academy Museum from 2012-2016, will start in the new position at the beginning of 2020. The museum is scheduled to open next year.

Kramer is returning to the Academy Museum from the Brooklyn Academy of Music, where he served as vp development and oversaw 45. Prior to that, he was vp institutional engagement at Rhode Island School of Design and worked on campaigns for the Southern California Institute of Architecture and the California Institute of the Arts. He also has worked in business and fundraising for the Sundance Institute and Columbia University's School of Art.

“The board unanimously welcomes Bill Kramer as the Academy Museum’s new director,” Ron Meyer, chair of the Academy Museum's board of trustees and vice chairman of NBCUniversal, said in a statement. “Bill’s experience and influence in the worlds of design, culture, and academia, coupled with his institutional knowledge of the museum, position him as an ideal leader to guide the museum to its opening and beyond.”

At the museum, Kramer helped develop the institution's first exhibit, Hollywood Costume, a display of costume design across film history. According to the Academy, the museum's first exhibit attracted 78,000 visitors. And before the museum began construction at the Wilshire May Company Building, Kramer raised $250 million for the process and managed public approvals for the new building.

“I have a deep connection to the Academy Museum,” Kramer said in his own statement. “I am so looking forward to working again with the museum’s creative teams, staff, and partners as we prepare to open the doors of our spectacular campus. As I felt when I helped to launch this project, I am confident that we are building the world’s greatest museum experience dedicated to movies.”

Come Jan. 1, Kramer stands to inherit an institution-in-progress that has, and continues to, confront many difficulties. Running over budget, the $388 million museum has delayed its opening several times and encountered obstacles realizing architect Renzo Piano's design. Though Brougher has left (with the honorary title "founding director"), his curatorial team remains in place and will be curating the museum until its completion.