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Taylor Mayad – Guest Contributor
Dec 9 @ 12:47 pm
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Karen Katz elected chair of the Perot Museum of Nature and Science Board of Directors

During its final 2020 board meeting, the Perot Museum of Nature and Science Board of Directors elected Karen Katz as its chair for the 2020-2021 fiscal year. Katz succeeds Mac McFarland who led the Board for the past two years. The Board also named David R. Corrigan as chair-elect for the 2020-2021 fiscal year. Corrigan has served on the Museum board and in key roles for nearly 16 years.

 Katz is former president and CEO of the Neiman Marcus Group, one of the world’s leading luxury and fashion retailers. During her 33-year tenure and eight years as CEO, she led the company and its 15,000 associates through its digital transformation, presiding over an extended period of growth, innovation and unparalleled excellence.

“Karen Katz is uniquely qualified to become our next chair, bringing a vast knowledge of the Dallas community, a long corporate history of success, and a thorough understanding of what it takes to move an organization forward in a sustainable and innovative way,” said Dr. Linda Silver, Eugene McDermott Chief Executive Officer of the Perot Museum. “We are delighted to have her guide our Board of Directors in the coming year.”

In addition to her new leadership role, Katz will continue to serve on the boards of publicly traded companies Under Armour, Humana and Casper. She also chairs a shoe company called StreetTrend and advises a number of other entrepreneurial ventures.

A native Dallasite, Katz received a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Texas at Austin and a master’s degree of business administration from the University of Houston. She’s also involved with Harvard University’s Executive Education Programs for Finance and Customer Service.

As the Board welcomed Katz into her new role, they also celebrated the achievements of McFarland, who is executive chair of GenOn Energy as well as executive chair of California Resources Corporation. 

During his two-year tenure as chair, McFarland oversaw a massive museum collection improvement and consolidation process that brought the Museum’s 150,000 item collection to a new, state-of-the-art facility, positioning the Museum for its next American Alliance of Museums (AAM) accreditation cycle. Also, on his watch the Museum completed the total reimagination of the Texas Instruments Engineering & Innovation Hall and, in the exhibition halls, the expansion of bilingual exhibits in English and Spanish and attainment of 50:50 gender parity in representations of scientists. 

McFarland also launched the Visioning Committee, committed the Museum to participate in the AAM Facing Change initiative to diversify the Board, and supported the staff through the COVID-19 crisis. Under his leadership, the Museum launched its first in-house curated, world-exclusive exhibition – Origins: Fossils from the Cradle of Humankind – and hosted its most-visited special exhibition – The Art of the Brick.

“As chair of the Perot Museum of Nature and Science and as an engineer, Mac McFarland tapped into his deep passion for informal STEM education to help us deliver on our mission in new and exciting ways. His thoughtful stewardship also helped guide us through the COVID-19 pandemic, empowering us to remain a strong and vital institution,” said Silver. “We are grateful for his leadership these past two plus years and thankful he will remain on the board to further our ambitious goals for the future.”

Corrigan, who leads Corrigan Investments, Inc., has been involved with the Museum for decades and previously chaired the Museum’s Development Committee. He played a key role in raising the funds to build the Perot Museum, which opened at its current location in 2012. 

“As chair-elect, David Corrigan will continue to co-chair the Museum’s Visioning Committee with an eye toward long-term sustainability in an ever-changing downtown landscape,” added Silver. “We are fortunate to have his expertise and leadership on the board for the next several years.”

Katz will oversee a diverse board of community representatives.

They are Kelvin A. Baggett, McKesson Corporation; Nancy K. Best, community volunteer; Sheila Davis Beuerlein, community volunteer; Yasmin Bhatia, Uplift Education; Sam A. Bloom, Camelot Strategic Marketing & Media; William Lane Britain, PetroCap, LLC; Nancy Carlson, Carlson Capital; Marc Christensen, Southern Methodist University, Lyle School of Engineering; Kelly H. Compton, The Hoglund Foundation; Andrew Gould, Wick Phillips Gould & Martin, LLP; Joan Buchanan Hill, Ed.D., The Lamplighter School; Forrest Hoglund, Hoglund Interests; Walt Humann, OsteoMed; John Jaggers, Sevin Rosen Funds; Maria-Cristina Jaramillo, AHOrA (Amigas Hispanas Organizadas para Ayudar); Hagop Kozanian, Texas Instruments; Pamela Okada, M.D., UT Southwestern Medical Center; Nancy Perot, Petrus Management; Royce Ramey, Tolleson Wealth Management; Eric Reeves, GreenLight Credentials and High STEPS, LLC; Earl Simpkins, Strategy& (PwC);  Nicole Small, LH Holdings, Inc./Lyda Hill Foundation; Gail Copus Spann, community volunteer; Marlene Sughrue, Dallas Art Fair; Sharon E. Tindell, former President & CMO of The Container Store; Daniel Tobey, DLA Piper LLP (US); Robert Vaughn, Vaughn Capital Partners, LLC; Bill Wade, Bain & Company, Inc.; Jacob Walter, Hillwood Urban; and Abby Williams, United to Learn. 

The Perot Museum is located at 2201 N. Field Street in Dallas, Texas. For parking information and other details, visit perotmuseum.org or call 214-428-5555.