Out & About: The Westmoreland honors retiring Director/CEO Judy O’Toole
It’s a bittersweet situation: people come together to tell you how much they love you, but the reason they’re telling you now is because you’re leaving.
There was joy and sadness on May 30 in The Westmoreland Museum of American Art as friends, relatives, art lovers, community leaders and others gathered for an open house to celebrate Judy O’Toole, the Greensburg museum’s retiring Richard M. Scaife Director/CEO.
A press release from the museum summed it up this way: “The evening will recognize Judy’s remarkable tenure of 25 years and the revolutionary transformations the Museum has undergone during her leadership.”
Greensburg Mayor Robert Bell read a proclamation tracing the museum’s growth under O’Toole’s leadership, from a small local facility to an internationally recognized institution. Westmoreland County Commissioners Gina Cerilli and Chuck Anderson added their salutations and congratulations.
Chief Curator Barbara Jones unveiled “Portrait of Judy,” a portrait of O’Toole by artists Mark Perrott and Robert Qualters that will hang in The Westmoreland’s post-1950s gallery.
Music was provided by the NewLanders, who reunited for the evening. The group had recorded a CD to accompany the major 2006 exhibition, “Born of Fire,” which included “The Valley of Work,” The Westmoreland’s collection of more than 140 pieces documenting Pittsburgh’s steel heritage, presented in its entirety for the first time.
Husband Kevin O’Toole, daughter and son-in-law Rachel and Ryan Marling and mother Betty Hansen provided moral support to the somewhat-tearful honoree, who also lauded the museum staff.
The evening was hosted by the Committee for the Westmoreland. Members on hand included Kathy Longacre, Sally Loughran, Amy Faith, Barbara Fichtner, Kitty Hricenak andSally Anne Novak.
Seen: Ann Nemanic, Endy Reindl, Mike Langer, Kelli Brisbane, Kim Ward, Barbara Ciampini, Sue Pollins, Barbara Ferrier, H andPat Childs, Adam Shaffer andSheila Cuellar-Shaffer with sonMaximillian, Joanna Moyar andBrian McCall, Tom andSaundra Gramling, Anita Manoli, Jon andNina Lewis, Annie Urban, Steve Squires andChad andAmy Amond.
Shirley McMarlin is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach her at 724-836-5750, [email protected] or via Twitter @shirley_trib.