WILLIAMSBURG, Va., February 23, 2021 – Dr. Mariruth Leftwich, an internationally known leader in the museum and education profession, will join the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation, a nationally accredited Virginia state agency that operates Jamestown Settlement and the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown, as the senior director of Museum Operations and Education in March.
“We’re thrilled Dr. Mariruth Leftwich will join the JYF leadership team as the new senior director of Museum Operations and Education,” said Christy S. Coleman, executive director at the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation. “She’s an innovator in museum education and brings a wealth of experience to her role.”
Leftwich, who has more than 20 years in the museum and education field, comes to the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation from the Senator John Heinz History Center in Pittsburgh, Pa., where she served in progressive leadership roles, most recently as the director of learning. She previously served as the e-learning officer for the Museum of London and vice president for education and programs at the Charlotte Museum of History.
Leftwich will begin her new post at the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation on March 22, overseeing exhibits, the collection, historical interpretation, special public programs, curriculum-based educational programming and visitor services at both museums. She succeeds Peter J. Armstrong, who took a position as executive director of the Mystic Seaport Museum in Mystic, Conn., in December.
She began her teaching career at the Atlanta History Center as a museum educator, and later served as a high school teacher in Charlotte, N.C., teaching world and American history before her work at the Charlotte Museum of History. She moved to London where she pursued graduate degrees, including a master’s degree in history while working with the National Army Museum, and a doctorate in museum and gallery learning from the University of London’s Institute of Education.
She serves on the Board of Directors for the Museum Educational Roundtable and the Leadership Team of the American Alliance of Museums Education Committee (EdCom). As an award-winning museum educator, her work has won accolades from the American Association for State and Local History (AASLH), the Pennsylvania Council for Social Studies Excellence and honored for education innovation on HundrED, the global education nonprofit.
The Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation, an educational agency of the Commonwealth of Virginia and accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, administers Jamestown Settlement and the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown. Through immersive gallery exhibits and living-history experiences, the museums present the shared stories of early America, from the convergence of American Indian, European and West Central African cultures to the development of the United States. Jamestown Settlement features historical interpretation in outdoor re-creations of a Paspahegh town, 1607 English ships and 1610-14 fort at Jamestown Settlement, and a Continental Army encampment and Revolution-era farm at the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown.
Located in Virginia’s Historic Triangle of Jamestown, Williamsburg and Yorktown, the museums are open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily year-round; closed on Christmas and New Year’s days. For more information, call (757) 253-4838 or visit jyfmuseums.org.