JANM President and CEO Greg Kimura speaks at the Minoru Yasui centennial celebration on April 30. (J.K. YAMAMOTO/Rafu Shimpo)
JANM President and CEO Greg Kimura speaks at the Minoru Yasui centennial celebration on April 30. (J.K. YAMAMOTO/Rafu Shimpo)

Japanese American National Museum officials announced Friday that Dr. G.W. (Greg) Kimura has decided to resign as president and chief executive officer to pursue new leadership opportunities.

Kimura’s departure comes after more than four years of distinguished during which he advanced many of the museum’s goals. During his tenure, he is credited with enhancing museum operations and leading a dynamic team of professionals.

“It has been a privilege working with so many dedicated professionals who care deeply about the mission and future of the museum,” said Kimura. “In today’s global environment, the museum is well positioned to foster greater understanding and appreciation of diverse cultures through its unique programs and events.

“After four years at the helm, I feel that a change in leadership at this point will be healthy for the organization and for me. I thank my team and museum volunteers, members and donors I’ve had the honor of working with, and look forward to the museum’s continued growth as a renowned cultural institution.”

“Greg has been an invaluable, motivated leader for the museum,” said former Secretary of Transportation Norman Y. Mineta, chair of the JANM Board of Trustees. “His ability to advocate for the museum and lead the organization forward has preserved the museum’s place at the forefront of nationally recognized ethnic museums. We are so very fortunate to have benefited from Greg’s leadership and we wish him well in the next phase of his career.

“The museum will build upon the progress under Greg’s tenure while continuing in its mission to share the Japanese American experience and appreciation of America’s ethnic and cultural diversity with younger generations.”

Kimura will leave his post on June 30, the end of the museum’s fiscal year. During the transition, the Board of Trustees will provide executive leadership, as needed, and will work with the Center for Nonprofit Management to identify and select an outside interim CEO to serve until a permanent president and CEO is appointed by the Board of Trustees.

Mineta will lead the Museum Search Committee’s national search for Kimura’s successor.

“The museum is financially strong and has many new and exciting exhibitions planned, including ‘Above the Fold: The New Expressions in Origami,’ exploring the transformation of the Japanese folding paper tradition into a sophisticated international art form,” he said. “As we work through this leadership transition, the board will work with the interim CEO and executive team to continue our focus on meeting the museum’s strategic plan goals. We will begin immediately to identify permanent president and CEO candidates and expect to hire a new leader as soon as practically possible.”

Established in 1985 and located in Little Tokyo, JANM promotes understanding and appreciation of America’s ethnic and cultural diversity by sharing the Japanese American experience. For more information, visit www.janm.org or call (213) 625-0414.

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