Woodlawn Conservancy announces new executive director

Meg Ventrudo headshot
Meg Ventrudo is ready to lead the Woodlawn Conservancy.
Photo courtesy of Woodlawn Conservancy

With more than 25 years of experience working in art and history museums and historic houses, Meg Ventrudo is ready to lead the Woodlawn Conservancy.

Ventrudo, who is a foodie and has completed the High Rock Challenge and a 10K adventure race every year since 2012, was introduced as the conservancy’s new executive director last month.

From 2004 to 2020, Ventrudo was the executive director of the Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art, Staten Island. At the Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art, she was responsible for all aspects of museum management including fundraising, marketing, programming, and the preservation of the museum’s two fieldstone buildings.

“I am thrilled to be joining Woodlawn Conservancy as the new executive director,” Ventrudo said. “I’m eager to use my experience from a 25-year career in art museums, history museums, and historic sites to enhance and sustain the cultural, artistic and nature-filled treasure that is the Historic Woodlawn Cemetery.”

In her tenure at the museum, she hosted visits from several Buddhist dignitaries including, His Holiness Ngawang Tenzin of Bhutan, the Venerable Thupten Ngondrop, the Medium of the State Oracle of Tibet and His Holiness Sakya Trichen. The highlight of her career was meeting His Holiness the Dalai Lama in 2010. An avid traveler, she has led museum trips to Tibet, Nepal, India, Japan, Bhutan, Sri Lanka and London, where one of the museum’s sculptures was exhibited at the Welcome Gallery Collection.

Prior to joining the Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art, Ventrudo was the assistant director for exhibits and education at the Museum of American Finance in Manhattan. She has also worked at Gunston Hall in Fairfax, Virginia and Mount Clare Mansion in Baltimore.

“We welcome the depth of expertise Meg Ventrudo brings to the position of Executive Director at The Woodlawn Conservancy,” said Mitch Rose, president and CEO.  “Her knowledge in the field of nonprofits will be an extraordinary asset as The Woodlawn Conservancy continues to serve families and the community through its vast history and enriching public events.”

Ventrudo is committed to working in the non-profit sector of the community, serving as a board member of the Staten Island Not-For-Profit Association from 2016 to 2020. She volunteers at the Museum of Maritime Navigation and Communication, Staten Island and with the Notre Dame Club of Staten Island.

She has been recognized with the Staten Island Economic Development Corporation’s “40-Under-40 Award” and the Soroptomist’s of Staten Island “Ruby Award.”

Ventrudo looks forward to hit the ground running.

“I find inspiration in the stories of those interred here; the suffragettes, the musicians and the immigrants that lived the American dream,” Ventrudo said. “And while the lessons of history can guide us, it is the contemporary work of Woodlawn that is also inspirational to me. Who would have thought that a cemetery could provide a pathway to careers in historic preservation and restoration for our youth?  What a thrill it is for us to train the next generation of preservationists!”

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