Smithsonian Announces High-Level Staff Shuffles

Posted January 16, 2004 at 3:01pm

In an effort to “improve coordination, cooperation and communication” within the Smithsonian Institution, Smithsonian Secretary Lawrence Small announced a number of high-level staff reorganizations earlier this month.

Sheila Burke, former undersecretary for American museums and national programs, has been tapped to serve as deputy secretary and chief operating officer for the institution.

In her new role, Burke, who has been with the Smithsonian since 2000, will oversee all of her previous offices as well as the office of the chief financial officer, the office of facilities engineering and operations and the office of the chief information officer.

A veteran of Capitol Hill, Burke was chief of staff to former Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole (R-Kan.) from 1986 to 1996 and was elected to serve as Secretary of the Senate in 1995.

Ned Rifkin is moving up from director of the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden to undersecretary for art. A Smithsonian veteran since 2002, Rifkin is now in charge of the Smithsonian’s vast national and international art collections as well as research, public programming and outreach.

Rounding out the changes is Undersecretary for Science Dave Evans, who as head of the science museums, research centers and the National Zoological Park will now have responsibility for the National Air and Space Museum.

— John McArdle