The Board of Trustees of the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures announced the appointment of Jacqueline Stewart as the director and president of the institution. Stewart has served as chief artistic and programming officer of the Academy Museum since 2020.
"Our ambition in opening the Academy Museum was to give Los Angeles and the world an unprecedented institution for understanding and appreciating the history and culture of cinema, in all its artistic glory and all its power, to influence and reflect society," Stewart said. "I feel deeply honored to have been chosen for this new role and look forward to working with our Board of Trustees, our COO and General Counsel Brendan Connell Jr., our wonderfully talented staff, and with Bill Kramer and the Academy, as we continue to advance our mission."
As chief artistic and programming officer, Stewart led strategy and planning for the
Academy Museum’s curatorial, educational and public programming initiatives, including exhibitions, screenings, symposia, publications, workshops, youth programs and the Academy Museum Podcast.
The news comes one week after it was announced that former Academy Museum President Bill Kramer would be appointed CEO of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. "It has been a great privilege to work hand-in-hand with Jacqueline as we opened the Academy Museum," Kramer said. "I am thrilled that we will continue to collaborate in our two new roles. I know the museum will thrive thanks to her rare combination of expertise, creativity, and proven leadership. Like movie fans everywhere, I am so thankful to have her guide the future of the Academy Museum."
Stewart has been instrumental in public understanding of cinema and key explorations of film history. In 2005, she published the award-winning book Migrating to the Movies: Cinema and Black Urban Modernity; in 2015, she co-authored the book L.A. Rebellion: Creating a New Black Cinema, and that same year, she co-curated the DVD set Pioneers of African American Cinema. In 2019, she was named the first African American host of Turner Classic Movies as the host of its "Silent Sunday Nights" programming.
A native of Chicago's South Side, Stewart also founded the South Side Home Movie Project in 2005 to preserve, digitize and screen amateur footage documenting everyday life in the South Side. An advocate for film preservation, she is a three-time appointee to the National Film Preservation Board, where she led the drafting of reports on diversity, equity and inclusion on the National Film Registry and in the film archival profession. She is currently a professor of cinema and media studies at the University of Chicago, and previously served on the faculty of Northwestern University.
Stewart was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2018, and has since been honored as a senior fellow at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of African American History and Culture in 2019 and a MacArthur Foundation Fellow in 2021.
"The Board warmly and unanimously agrees that Jacqueline Stewart is the ideal choice to lead the Academy Museum into the future," said Ted Sarandos, chair of the Academy Museum’s Board of Trustees and Co-CEO of Netflix. "A strong and inspiring partner to Bill Kramer throughout the period leading up to our opening, she gave indispensable direction to the curatorial program that has been so widely admired. Her assumption of the role of director and president is a testament to both the intellectual heft of the Academy Museum and its institutional strength."
Stewart assumes her duties as director and president on July 18.