OCEANSIDE–The Oceanside Museum of Art is embarking on the next phase of its rapid organizational growth with a change in leadership.
Executive Director Daniel Foster has resigned his position and the board of trustees has named Development Officer and long-time supporter Sandra Chanis as the interim executive director.
Foster, who has served as executive director since 2012, is stepping out of his position to pursue new opportunities for his personal and professional growth and to create an opportunity for a new leader to build on his successes at Oceanside Museum of Art .
“Daniel is a visionary leader who has elevated our museum to a new level of recognition, professionalism and prosperity,” said Oceanside Museum of Art Board President Robert Pendleton MD, PhD. “Under his guidance the quality of exhibition programming has risen to new heights, engagement of community patrons and artists has been enhanced in new and imaginative ways, and strategic planning has occurred that perfectly positions the museum for continued growth and development.”
Foster pursued an ambitious growth plan during his time at the museum, which resulted in revenues doubling for each year of his employment and a 35 percent rise in membership. His collaborative approach was instrumental in the creation of a stellar curatorial team at the museum, as well as the formation of the Oceanside Cultural Consortium, a group of community and business leaders who meet regularly to discuss a vision for Oceanside. Foster was integral in starting Oceanside’s monthly first-Friday Art Walk, and has even embraced the broader North County arts community by bringing community leaders together through meetings and arranging an satellite gallery at the Herb Turner building in Del Mar.
“I am very proud of the tremendous, growth, accomplishments and partnerships that we have experienced at OMA during my tenure,” said Foster. “Oceanside has a special place in my heart and I will miss working with our talented staff, board, supporters and partners.”
Foster, who resigned briefly last year for personal reasons, went on to say, “As the museum has grown and evolved, it is clear it needs a different set of skills in its leader. After careful consideration, I feel confident that it’s time to pass the torch. My commitment to the arts community remains steadfast and I’ll look forward to watching OMA as it embarks on its next evolution.”
Foster submitted his resignation to the board of trustees last week and the board selected Chanis as interim executive director while they conduct their nationwide search for a new executive director. Chanis is a longtime leader and volunteer at Oceanside Museum of Art, having supported the museum in nearly every capacity including as past-board president and building capital campaign co-chair. She will work with Foster in his remaining advisory tenure to ensure a seamless transition.
“I am deeply honored to be chosen to lead the foundation during this time of transition and change,” said Chanis. “While Daniel will be missed, we want to wish him all the best as he enters a new stage in his life and career.”
Oceanside Museum of Art plans to celebrate Foster and all of his important contributions at the upcoming Patron Party on May 29.
“The Patron Party will allow us to thank Daniel for the extraordinary vision and direction he has provided to OMA as we strive to be an accredited, sustainable and nationally acclaimed gathering place that celebrates the inspiring and transformative power of arts and culture,” said Darrell Pilant, Oceanside Museum of Art board vice president. “At the same time, we are excited about the future and seeing OMA move to the next level.”