BCRI President and CEO Andrea L. Taylor Resigns
Five-Year Tenure Marked By Achievements, Advancement of BCRI Mission
Birmingham, AL (April 17, 2020) — Birmingham Civil Rights Institute President and CEO Andrea L. Taylor has announced her resignation after five years of impressive achievements in advancing the BCRI’s mission, improving its facilities and building the foundation for its successful future.
Taylor was named president and CEO in 2015 with an expectation to serve three to five years. “We are deeply grateful for the leadership that Ms. Taylor has provided, and are appreciative of her continued support of the mission and goals of the Institute,” said BCRI Board Chairman Isaac Cooper. “Prior to the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, Ms. Taylor and the BCRI board had begun discussing a succession plan. Faced with the financial impact of the pandemic on the BCRI, Ms. Taylor decided to accelerate her transition, in hopes that her decision will create more flexibility for the Institute’s future viability.”
Cooper outlined a list of achievements the BCRI made under Taylor’s leadership:
- Setting an attendance record with more than 1.5 million online and in-person visitors in 2019
- Launching an immersive Digital Learning Project with Apple that will share Birmingham’s modern Civil and Human Rights Movement across the globe
- Formation of the Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument which was authorized by President Barack Obama in 2017 and is managed by the U.S. National Park Service
- Work with five National Park Service superintendents and stakeholders to plan for improving the history and economic value of Birmingham’s Civil Rights legacy
- Formation of the Alabama African-American Civil Rights Heritage Sites Consortium, the effort to preserve places of worship, lodging and civic engagement from the Civil Rights era including sites in Birmingham, Montgomery, Selma and Greensboro
- Significant exhibits such as: “Foot Soldiers: Then & Now” by photographer Chester Higgins, the A.G. Gaston exhibit, and “Black Citizenship in the Age of Jim Crow,” a loaned exhibit from the New-York Historical Society
- Capital maintenance project for BCRI building remediation and renovations
- Resolution of $1.4M in debt that had been carried on the BCRI’s balance sheet for more than 20 years, which was a limit to fundraising options.
- FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award
- Expanded the Legacy Youth Leadership Program
“It has truly been a privilege to serve not only the BCRI but also the entire community of people who support our mission,” Taylor said. “I count it an honor to pass the baton to the next generation of foot soldiers who will advance the fundamental human rights of all people. In the midst of this pandemic there’s clearly much work to be done in the community, the nation and across the globe. As I look forward to the next chapter in my life, I will always cherish the memories of working with our staff and stakeholders, and continue to advocate the goals of the BCRI.”