New Milwaukee Public Museum President Returns Home

Jun 27, 2014

Wisconsin native Dennis Kois will take on his first assignment at a natural and culture museum as the new head of the Milwaukee Public Museum.
Credit Milwaukee Public Museum

A new era has begun at the Milwaukee Public Museum, with Whitefish Bay native Dennis Kois as the institution's new President and CEO.

Dennis Kois returns home to Milwaukee from a position at a Boston museum.
Credit Milwaukee Public Museum

Kois started in the field right here, earning his bachelor’s degree in museum design at UW-Milwaukee.  He went on to NYU, where he got a master’s in museum studies.

He’s held a variety of positions at art museums around the country, but returned home to take on his first appointment at a natural and cultural history museum.

Kois says his experiences leading contemporary art museums will inform this new challenge.

"I always wanted to be in the natural history museum world, so I'm excited to be here," Kois says. "But I think the art world itself is a little bit more experimental and willing to take some risks as institutions, particularly the contemporary art side of it, which I was in. So I think  you'll see the public museum think a little more deeply and broadly about what it means to be a museum in this community, and how to interface with the community."

Kois took over as MPM head in May, from a position at a museum in Boston.