The Maine Jewish Museum has hired a fundraising and community specialist who has worked in the White House under three administrations as its next executive director. Gary A. Barron will lead the museum in Portland as it builds support in Maine and across the country, according to a press release issues by the museum on Tuesday morning.

Barron, who grew up in Newton, Massachusetts and now lives in Windham, comes to the Maine Jewish Museum from Bowdoin Management in Plantation, Florida, where he worked as managing director. He worked in the White House under Presidents Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan, and President Bill Clinton appointed him to the Board of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council, which oversees the governance and operations of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. Additionally, he was appointed by President Clinton to the Managing Board of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation.

He served as director of the Freedom of Information Office of the National Security Council at the White House and served as Deputy Treasurer of the Democratic National Committee in Washington, D.C. Barron also served as National Political Outreach Director for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.

“Gary comes with an extensive background in not-for-profits and development,” Steve Brinn, the museum president and board chairman, said in a press release. “We all look forward to having Gary lead the museum into an exciting future as we continue building support around the State of Maine and the nation.”

Maine Jewish Museum, housed within the Etz Chaim Synagogue on Congress Street in Portland, honors the contributions and diversity of Maine’s Jewish immigrants through art exhibitions and programming.

Barron said in a statement, “I am thrilled to join in the important work of the Maine Jewish Museum. It is heartwarming to see the look of discovery on the faces of all who come and see our exhibits and learn of Jewish heritage in Maine. I am excited to be working with our amazing staff, incredible volunteers and the Museum Board to build upon our exciting story of life in Maine.”

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