Jennifer Ortiz Named New Director of Utah Division of State History

In a press release by the Utah Department of Cultural & Community Engagement (CCE), Jennifer Ortiz, the current Museum Services Manager for the Utah Division of Arts & Museums (UA&M), will be assuming her new position as the Director of the Utah Division of State History. You can read full announcement below:

Jennifer Ortiz has been appointed the new director of the Utah Division of State History

A primary goal for Ortiz as director is to amplify the important research and programming already being done by the division, whether it’s contemporary Utah history, archaeological studies, educational programs, or historic preservation. She plans to do this through expanded public history programming and community outreach, establishing critical new partnerships, and strengthening those that are mainstays for the division. 

Prior to her appointment, Ortiz worked as the Museum Services Manager for the Utah Division of Arts & Museums for 7 years, building out the program and establishing strategic local and national partnerships that elevated Utah’s museum sector in the field. 

Ortiz will begin her new role on June 7, 2021. She succeeds Kevin Fayles, who has served as interim director since 2019 and will continue as the deputy director for the division.

“I am thrilled by the invitation to join State History in a pivotal moment for the organization. As we’ve seen by world and national events in the last year, history practice and consumption, and specifically public history, is critical now more than ever,” Ortiz said. “The organization has a unique opportunity to claim its position as the connection point between Utah’s people and their rich history, to become the premier public history organization in the state and a voice of record for all Utahns.”

Ortiz has a dual Bachelors in History and Latin American Studies from the University of San Francisco and a Masters in History and Museum Studies from Tufts University. In addition to her academic background, she is an experienced organizational leader with a certificate in Nonprofit Leadership & Management from the University of Utah as well a certificate in Organizational and Change Management from the Getty Leadership Institute at Claremont University.

Ernesto Balderas

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