Fishers resident to lead Eiteljorg Museum


The Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art announced Thursday, March 9, that Kathryn Haigh of Fishers will be its new president and CEO.

Haigh succeeds retiring CEO John Vanausdall, who has led the Indianapolis museum for more than 26 years.

Eiteljorg President and CEO John Vanausdall
John Vanausdall is retiring as Eiteljorg president

Haigh has nearly three decades of experience in the field, including exhibition management, community outreach and museum operations. She plans to collaborate with the community to create new engagement opportunities.

“I am excited about the opportunity to lead the Eiteljorg at this particular time in our country’s history,” Haigh said. “We are experiencing a period of cultural transformation in Indianapolis with many new leaders at key institutions, and I can’t wait to see what we can do together to promote culture and become a community resource for all.”

Haigh most recently was interim director and chief operating officer at the Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields. In that role, she prioritized collecting and exhibiting art from marginalized groups, and worked to connect with underserved communities.

Kathryn Haigh will be the new president and CEO of the Eiteljorg Museum.
(Image courtesy of Newfields, photographed by Eric Lubrick)

Eiteljorg Board of Directors Chair Pat Anker said Vanausdall announced his plan to retire last August, and the board’s challenge was to find a high-quality replacement.

“Kathryn Haigh clearly is that someone,” Anker said. “Her career has been one of rich artistic as well as deep operating experience. We searched for – and found – someone with exemplary credentials in leadership, fundraising, DEAI, strategic planning and community outreach. In addition, Kathryn brings a tremendous exhibition-development background.”

L.G. Edwards, an Eiteljorg Board member and former board chair, headed up the search committee. More than 200 people applied for the position, and Edwards said Haigh stood out as the top choice.

“As part of a purposeful and inclusive search process, a particular effort was made to ensure the voices and networks of Native American and First Nations communities were included, both in order to support the development of the position description, and in our outreach to potential candidates and those with networks that might include potential candidates,” Edwards said.

Haigh starts her new job in May.

For information about the museum, visit