Letter from the President
By Charles F. Bryan, Jr., President and Chief Executive Officer
Earlier this year, I announced my plans to retire at the end of 2008. That will mark twenty wonderful years at the helm of this great institution. I wanted to give the board of trustees ample time so that we could pass the baton of leadership in the best way possible for the Virginia Historical Society. Bringing in a new president and CEO, with a new set of eyes and ears, will provide the VHS with the fresh perspectives and ideas that every long-established organization needs.
I'm pleased to say that the search process is now well under way. The board has appointed a search committee chaired by trustee and former VHS chairman Austin Brockenbrough, III. The other members of the committee are Gerald L. Baliles, Nancy H. Gottwald, Helen Turner Murphy, John R. Nelson, William B. Thalhimer, III, and F. Blair Wimbush. J. Stewart Bryan, III and W. Taylor Reveley, III are ex officio members, and Frances S. Pollard serves as the staff liaison with the committee.
Last month the committee advertised the opening, in print and online, and has sent letters to potential candidates. I'm confident there will be a strong pool of applicants. After all, thanks to your devoted and enduring support, the VHS enjoys a commanding position as one of the leading historical organizations in the nation.
The committee expects to conduct the winnowing process and select a shortlist of candidates by the time winter fades into spring. Then the full board expects to make a decision that will have my successor in place no later than Labor Day next year. That will allow about a month's overlap with me. For the last several months of 2008, I'll be taking the sabbatical that the board granted me several years ago but that I wasn't able to take during our 175th anniversary campaign.
Of course, we don't know yet the identity of the next president and CEO, but I look forward to welcoming him or her to the best job imaginable. My successor will inherit a fantastic board, staff, and corps of dedicated members. Together, all of us will continue to ensure a bright future for this venerable institution. One thing is certain: the year ahead will be an exciting one.
Posted December 2007
• Letter archive
• Charles F. Bryan, Jr. biography