Mark A Ryan
Director of Collections & Operations at Plains Art Museum

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Mark A Ryan


Mark has twenty years of experience working in the registration and collections management profession in art, historical and natural history institutions and has been the Director of Collections & Operations at the Plains Art Museum since 2006 where is responsible for the care and management of the museum’s collections and exhibitions program (in-house and traveling) as well as overseeing the security and facilities departments. Prior to his current position Mark directed the Curatorial Facility Certification Program at the Texas Historical Society and was Registrar/Collections Manager at the Plains Art Museum earlier in his career.

His formal education includes a B.S in Biology and a B.A. in History from the University of Wyoming and an M.A. in Museum Science from Texas Tech University.

He is an active participant, leader and advocate for collections care through a number of current  and past activities, including serving multiple terms on the boards of the Midwest Art Conservation Center, the Registrar’s Committee of the Mountain Plains Museums Association and co-directing a 3 year IMLS funded  Connecting to Collections, two-state, collections care and disaster preparedness project entitled Dakota Collections Care Initiative that delivered critical collections care and disaster preparedness and response training to museums, libraries and archives throughout South and North Dakota.

He has also participated on the national level by co-organizing the Registrar’s Committee of the American Alliance of Museum’s annual Reinforcement Crew volunteer event for the past seven years, serving on the Mid America Arts Alliance/Exhibits USA Advisory Panel as well as serving as both field and panel reviewer for IMLS’s Museums for America grant program since 2009.

Mark fills his free time by serving on the Lakes Region Arts Council – one of seven Minnesota regional arts council boards, cycling, hiking and trying to keep up with his three young sons.

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