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September 8, 2020


Fellowship 2020 for Black Americans in Museums, Arts, and Cultural Spaces brings together talented African/Black American emerging leaders based on their leadership promise and work in museum, visual arts, and other cultural spaces.  The program connects fellows to positions of leadership in the field as well as highly accomplished national and international arts and cultural leaders. It prepares them to:

  • Step into leadership positions in museums, visual artspaces, and other cultural nonprofits through hands-on experience
  • Make a difference in these institutions through identification and articulation of diverse viewpoints through partnerships and collaborations
  • Inspire new ideas and innovative change across institutions with a mandate to serve community

Fellowship 2020 addresses unconscious and conscious bias by offering museum professionals from the African American community a paid 1-year opportunity to work with Lord Cultural Resources, the Association of African American Museums and partner cultural institutions to foster sustainable change in arts and cultural spaces. The fellowship also provides existing and new cultural institutions with an opportunity shift the ways in which they work to unpack and address unconscious bias which can be a barrier to engaging diverse audiences, staff, and leadership. Each fellow receives a $50,000 stipend.

Fellowship 2020 is a partnership between the global firm Lord Cultural Resources and the Association of African American Museums. It memorializes 2020 as a pivotal year when the toxic mix of racism and pandemic threaten the very survival of African Americans. Lord will provide learning, job experience and placement for Black Americans aspiring to cultural leadership. The Association will provide expertise, a pipeline of candidates, and coordination.


  • $50,000 stipend
  • Combined virtual and in-person placement with a partnering cultural institution
  • One-on-one leadership coaching from a panel of senior cultural professionals


Fellows will participate in a yearlong co-curricular program designed by Lord Cultural Resources and the Association of African American Museums. This program is intended to inspire, to provide concrete opportunities for leadership skills-building, and to connect fellows with a network of like-minded peers and mentors that will last a lifetime.

The Fellowship program includes three months of training and nine months of field experience grounded in discussions with visionary leaders whose work has had significant impact in cultural spaces. The program will also focus on strengthening core competencies that are central to cultural leadership, such as mastering the art of persuasion and negotiation, promoting strong moral character and ethics, and leading effective teams and organizations.

Eligibility Requirements:

  • Be a member of the Association of African American Museums
  • African/Black Americans with 2–5 years of experience working in a museum or cultural space
  • Graduate degree or bachelor’s degree with work experience equivalent to graduate level

Institutional Requirements:

  • Availability and commitment to engage fellows in leadership work during the period of the fellowship
  • Capability and interest in developing diverse leaders
  • Competence and experience in the areas relevant to application
  • Commit to the institutional financial match

Application Process:

Applications for Fellowship 2020 will be available on the Lord Cultural Resources (www.lord.ca) and Association of African American Museums website (www.blackmuseums.org).


June- July: solicit and solidify institutional partners (placement and cost)

August: Application period open

September: AAAM/Lord work with institutions to select cohort

October: Announce fellows

November: Fellowships begin

Apply now