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October 19, 2009

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Former UF president and CEO of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles to speak at the Harn

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Charles Young, chief executive officer of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles and former University of Florida president, will speak at the Harn Museum of Art at 2 p.m. Oct. 27.

Since December 2008, Young has served as the CEO of MOCA, Los Angeles, having been brought out of retirement to lead the museum to more secure financial ground. He assumed the position after the museum’s endowment plummeted in value from $50 million to $6 million in just nine years. Consistent overspending left the museum reaching into its endowment for funds.

Young took aggressive action to cut the museum’s operating budget from $20 million to $15.5 million by implementing layoffs and cancelling traveling shows in favor of displaying works from the museum’s permanent collection. At the same time, Young has had remarkable success raising funds to support the museum, raising more than $60 million during the last nine months.

“We are delighted that Chuck Young has agreed to share his experiences as CEO of MOCA, Los Angeles in a presentation at the Harn,” said Rebecca Nagy, director of the Harn Museum. “During these tough economic times, when museums across the country are struggling to remain strong and dynamic, learning about his successes there will be instructional and inspiring.”

Prior to serving as CEO of MOCA, Young was president of UF from 1999 to 2003. During his tenure, Young led the completion of a capital campaign raising $850 million. He also empowered university faculty by giving them control of the Senate and charging a faculty committee with establishing a new strategic plan for the university. Young also served as chancellor of UCLA from 1968 to 1997, overseeing the growth of UCLA into a top 10 research university.

Admission is free. For more information call 352-392-9826 or visit

Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art
The Harn Museum of Art is an integral part of the University of Florida. The museum’s permanent collection holds nearly 7,000 works, including African, Asian, modern and contemporary art and photography. The museum enhances the university’s activities and serves a culturally diverse audience through the exhibition of works of art and educational programming. Admission is free. Museum hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday. Parking is free on weekends. The Camellia Court Café is open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Harn Museum of Art is located at Southwest 34th Street and Hull Road at the UF Cultural Plaza. For more information call 352-392-9826 or visit

Media contact :
Tami Wroath, Director of Marketing and Public Relations
Harn Museum of Art
352.392.9826 x116

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