Mimi Gardner Gates ’81 Ph.D.
Mimi Gardner Gates is Director Emerita of the Seattle Art Museum, which she directed from 1994 until July 1, 2009. Currently she oversees the museum’s new Gardner Center for Asian Art and Ideas. Prior to moving to Seattle, Ms. Gates spent two decades at the Yale University Art Gallery, where she became the Henry J. Heinz II Director in January 1987. After completing her B.A. at Stanford University, she earned honors studying Chinese language and culture at the École Nationale des Langues Orientales Vivantes in Paris, and completed a master’s degree at the University of Iowa and a Ph.D. in the history of art at Yale. Ms. Gates is a former president and trustee of the Association of Art Museum Directors. She has served on steering committees of the Museum Program of the National Endowment for the Arts and the Getty Leadership Institute Advisory Committee. Ms. Gates serves on the boards of directors of the Blakemore Foundation, the Dunhuang Foundation, Copper Canyon Press, the Northwest African American Museum, Terra Foundation, and the Heinz Center for Science, Economics and the Environment. At Yale she serves on the Art Gallery Governing Board and was awarded the Wilbur Cross Medal in 2006. Ms. Gates was elected Alumni Fellow in 2007.