Royal Ontario Museum Announces Appointment of New Chief of Collections Care


TORONTO, October 30, 2023 – Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) is pleased to announce the appointment of Leela Outcalt to Chief of Collections Care. In this newly created role, Outcalt is responsible for the direct management of ROM’s extensive permanent collections, including over 13 million objects and specimens in 27 different disciplines spanning art, culture, and nature. A member of the senior management team and a key partner in institutional long-range planning, the CCC reports to the Deputy Director, Collections & Research and Chief Innovation Officer.

“The Chief of Collections Care position ensures that ROM’s extraordinary collections are managed at the level befitting their stature,” says Valerie Huaco, Deputy Director, Collections & Research, and Chief Innovation Officer. “Leela's expertise in managing large diverse collections at complex institutions make her ideally positioned to joining the Co-chief Curators in bringing renewed focus to the Art, Culture and Natural History collections at ROM.”

“Walking the galleries of the Royal Ontario Museum inspired wonder and curiosity in me. It's from that starting point that I am both excited and honored to join the dedicated team of professionals who care for ROM’s renowned collections,” says Leela Outcalt. “The breadth of ROM's material makes it uniquely suited to investigate complex questions across disciplines. I look forward to exploring how fresh methodologies that bridge these divisions can both expand our approaches to collections care and deepen engagement with ROM’s public.”

Leela Outcalt joins ROM from the Museum of the City of New York, where she served as Director of Collections, working with her team to steward a collection that spans multiple disciplines. Prior to that, she worked as the Senior Collections Manager for the American Wing at The Metropolitan Museum of Art for 13 years, during which she contributed to major gallery renovations and oversaw important expansions of the museum’s collections. She holds a B.A. in Art History from Reed College, Oregon, and an M.A. in Material Culture from the Bard Graduate Center, New York. Leela Outcalt will start her new position as Chief of Collections Care at ROM on January 8, 2024.



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Opened in 1914, ROM (Royal Ontario Museum) showcases art, culture, and nature from around the world and across the ages. Today, ROM houses more than 13 million objects, from Egyptian mummies to contemporary sculpture, from meteorites to dinosaurs. ROM is the most visited museum in Canada and one of the top ten museums in North America. It is also the country’s preeminent field research institute, with a diverse range of experts who help us understand the past, make sense of the present, and shape a shared future. Just as impressive is ROM’s facility—a striking combination of heritage architecture and the cutting-edge Michael Lee-Chin Crystal, which marks the Museum as an iconic landmark and global cultural destination. 

We live on in what we leave behind.