Royal BC Museum Chief Executive Officer Prof. Jack Lohman will be stepping down from his post, the museum’s board announced on Tuesday.
The Board of Directors says that the departure was mutually agreed upon and will be effective February 12th, 2021.
Following Lohman’s departure, Dr. Daniel Muzyka, chair of the board of directors, will serve as acting CEO until a recruitment process can be completed.
The move comes amid repeated allegations of discrimination and racism at the museum. In December, Troy Sebastian, curator of the Indigenous collection, slammed the Royal BC Museum’s senior leadership for failing to take action.
“It is well past time that the @RoyalBCMuseum board and senior leadership publicly acknowledge that the museum is a systemically racist, anti-Indigenous and colonial space and is committed to CHANGING THAT IMMEDIATELY,” Sebastian wrote in a tweet on December 18.
It is well past time that the @RoyalBCMuseum board and senior leadership publicly acknowledge that the museum is a systemically racist, anti-Indigenous and colonial space and is committed to CHANGING THAT IMMEDIATELY.
— Troy Sebastian (@Skink00ts) December 19, 2020
Sebastian tweeted on Tuesday that he would be leaving the museum this week, calling the institution a “wicked place” in possession of sacred items seized from his family during the residential school era.
The museum’s board wrote that Lohman’s departure is in response to “internal issues.”
They went on to thank the outgoing CEO for his “nine years of vision and service.”
In June 2020, Lohman stated that the Museum would be undertaking a review of its policies, including drafting an inclusivity action plan and undertaking mandatory bias training.
Critics have said these actions are not substantive, with some like Sebastian describing them as “gaslighting” the situation.
“All of the actions claimed to be taken by the museum have done nothing to make the worksite safe for Indigenous staff, including myself,” Sebastian wrote on Twitter.