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Oakland Museum of California Appoints Anyka Barber as New Director of Engagement

(OAKLAND, CA) July 17, 2017—The Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) announces Anyka Barber as its new Director of Engagement, effective June 2017.

Barber brings more than 10 years of extensive experience in arts administration, cultural programming, and business development to this leadership role at OMCA. This includes seven years of experience as Founder and Director of Betti Ono gallery in Oakland, an arts space and creative social enterprise committed to the cultural, social, political, and economic emancipation and development of low-income, immigrant, and LGBTQ communities of color.

In her role as Founder and Director of Betti Ono, Barber has attracted more than $2 Million in neighborhood level investments, transforming the downtown Oakland community with award-winning, internationally recognized programs. She also led more than 60 cultural programs, performances, exhibitions, and events at the gallery, which has earned a “Best of the East Bay” accolade from the East Bay Express for the last three consecutive years. A mover and shaker in the industry, Barber has earned many awards and honors, including “10 San Francisco Art Personalities You Should Know” by Complex Magazine; “Social Changemaker” award from the 2016 Oakland Indie Awards; and “Most Socially Engaged Curator” by the East Bay Express.

“Anyka brings incredible experience to her role as Director of Engagement at OMCA, which will directly support community partnerships, program development, education initiatives, and volunteer engagement at the Oakland Museum of California,” says OMCA Director and CEO Lori Fogarty. “She has a deep understanding of the importance of the arts’ role in social impact and is extremely well immersed in the Bay Area cultural community. We are thrilled to bring Anyka’s creative vision and her strong ties and dedication to community work to OMCA.”

Since 2015, Barber has worked with the San Francisco Foundation as a Program Officer and Multicultural Fellow, responsible for grantmaking and strategy implementation, including activating more than $10 Million in investments to prevent the displacement of low-income communities of color and preserve the racial and cultural identity of the Bay Area. In these roles, she also served as liaison and advisor to external partners such as the City and County of San Francisco Arts Commission, City of Oakland Mayor’s Taskforce on Artists Affordable Housing and Workspaces, and the Northern California Grantmakers Arts Loan Fund Steering Committee. In addition, Barber was part of the advising team for OMCA’s recent, groundbreaking exhibition All Power to the People: Black Panthers at 50.

“As a native to the city, I’ve always been deeply connected to and nurtured by Oakland’s creative community. The people, the legacy, and the culture are what makes this place so vibrant,” says Barber. “The Museum does an excellent job bringing relevant, socially-engaged topics to the forefront, providing a space for the community to gather, engage, and imagine. I look forward to bringing my experience to the table.”

Anyka Barber can be reached at 510-318-8451 and [email protected]. Press inquires should be directed to Lindsay Wright at [email protected].  

The Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) brings together collections of art, history, and natural science under one roof to tell the extraordinary stories of California and its people. OMCA’s groundbreaking exhibits tell the many stories that comprise California with many voices, often drawing on first-person accounts by people who have shaped California’s cultural heritage. Visitors are invited to actively participate in the Museum as they learn about the natural, artistic, and social forces that affect the state and investigate their own role in both its history and its future. With more than 1.9 million objects, OMCA is a leading cultural institution of the Bay Area and a resource for the research and understanding of California’s dynamic cultural and environmental heritage.

The Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) is at 1000 Oak Street, at 10th Street, in Oakland. Museum admission is $15.95 general; $10.95 seniors and students with valid ID, $6.95 youth ages 9 to 17, and free for Members and children 8 and under. There is a $4 charge in addition to general admission pricing for special exhibitions. OMCA offers onsite underground parking and is conveniently located one block from the Lake Merritt BART station, on the corner of 10th Street and Oak Street. The accessibility ramp is located at the 1000 Oak Street main entrance to the Museum.