Chase F. Robinson, the current president of the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, will be the new director of the Freer Gallery of Art and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, the Smithsonian Institution’s museums of Asian art, in Washington, D.C., the New York Times reports. He will take up his role at the galleries on December 10, and he succeeds Julian Raby, who retired from his post in 2017.
Much of Robinson’s expertise is in the area of Middle Eastern history. He first began at CUNY’s Graduate Center in 2008, and has since then held various positions, including provost, senior vice president, and president. He was also a longtime faculty member at Wolfson College in Oxford, England, and he was the chair of Oxford University’s Oriental studies department from 2003 to 2005.
In a statement given to the Times, David Skorton, the Smithsonian’s secretary, said, “Chase is an outstanding scholar with impeccable credentials and a notable educational leader who recognizes the importance of public institutions in advancing understanding as a widespread civic good.”