fbpx Skip to main content

Retirement of Director Roger Manley

Rich Holly performs a funny song with his guitar while Roger Manley laughs in the background.

At the end of June, the Gregg Museum celebrated the retirement of (now former) director Roger Manley and the opening of our newest exhibition, Selections from the Collections. With a colorfully-clad crowd of colleagues, friends, and supporters, we ushered Roger into his next chapter. Some in attendance were even donors of objects that are now on view in the Historic Residence.

Over the last 13 years under Roger’s leadership, the Gregg Museum has helped NC State’s community expand its understanding and appreciation of what art can be and what an artist can look like. Roger led the Gregg Museum through many significant changes including moving out of Talley Student Center, a time of exile in temporary spaces, through the design and construction of a new facility, the move into our current location and new offsite space, through the COVID-19 pandemic, a program review, and so much more.

From the over 60 exhibitions overseen to the thousands of objects added to the collection, Roger’s impact on the Gregg Museum will remain in many ways. As the university searches for the Gregg Museum’s next director, associate director and registrar Mary Hauser, will lead the Gregg team as interim director. The staff at the Gregg Museum will miss Roger, but we look forward to seeing him around at future exhibitions, programs, and events. Congratulations, Roger! Special thanks are owed to Chris Vitiello for transforming his Writing Cabinet into a Cabinet of Memories for Roger and to the United Strings of Color for an evening of beautiful music.

A Message from Roger:

A few months ago I let the university know that I had decided to retire from NC State. My main reason for doing so is that other projects are calling me. I want to do a book and exhibition of my previous career as a photographer, create a website, complete a new documentary photo project that I’ve long had in mind, and perhaps even write another screenplay (I wrote several back in the 1980s and 90s that were shown on PBS). I have been putting these projects on hold for too long. A big part of what’s kept me here years longer than I had originally intended is the real joy and satisfaction I have gotten from working with the highly dedicated folks on the Gregg Museum staff. I’ll leave feeling that the museum will be in good hands.

I will always look upon my thirteen years at the Gregg with real satisfaction at all we were able to accomplish, and with gratitude for having been given the opportunity to do it. Getting to participate from scratch in the designing, fundraising, building, and operation of one’s own workplace is a rare and enviable thing for any museum professional.

I want to thank the members of Friends of the Gregg and the greater Gregg Museum “family” for all the support and help we got when we needed it, and for their trust in me to lead this museum till now. It has been an honor to be a part of NC State and I will miss all my friends and colleagues here, although overall I feel pretty good about this decision. My wife Theadora and I plan to remain in Durham, so we will be visiting the Gregg whenever we can. This won’t be a matter of “so long, goodbye,” then, but “see you real soon!”

Roger Manley