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ST. LOUIS, Dec. 18, 2020—The Saint Louis Art Museum has promoted Renée Brummell Franklin to chief diversity officer, a new position that will oversee the implementation of a report on diversity, equity, access and inclusion that was adopted last summer by the museum’s board of commissioners. The appointment is effective Jan. 1. Franklin will work closely with all museum departments to implement the report, which details immediate, actionable initiatives as well as longer-term considerations.

“For more than 20 years, Renée has played a critical role in expanding community programs and reaching new and diverse audiences,” said Brent R. Benjamin, the Barbara B. Taylor Director of the Saint Louis Art Museum. “In her new role, Renée will oversee these ongoing efforts and work on new projects that will engage, include, and represent the full diversity of the St. Louis community.”

Franklin joined the museum as coordinator of community outreach programs in 1998. During her time at the museum, she has served in a sequence of roles of increasing responsibility. Most recently as director of audience development, Franklin led the museum’s efforts to expand and cultivate sustainable relationships with diverse audiences.

Franklin helped develop several successful initiatives at the museum, including the Friends of African American Art Collectors Circle, the Art with Us youth residency program, and the Teen Assistant Program, a mentoring program that includes paid, summer employment. Franklin has long overseen the Romare Bearden Graduate Museum Fellowship, a national model for increasing under-represented professionals working in museums.

Franklin received a master’s degree in education and master’s degree in business administration from Webster University and a bachelor’s degree in marketing and business administration from Towson University.

She volunteers on several boards and committees including the World Trade Center St. Louis, St. Louis Mosaic Project and Gateway Korea Foundation. She is a founding member of the National Alliance of African American Art Support Groups, she was named the Missouri State Coordinator for Sister Cities International and she is co-chair of the local program pairing St. Louis with St. Louis, Senegal. Franklin has received numerous awards and commendations, including the Grand Center Visionary Award for Outstanding Arts Professional.

CONTACT: Matthew Hathaway, 314.655.5493,

Renée Brummell Franklin
Renée Brummell Franklin
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