“A lot of people thought that even though we had gotten the land, the process of getting all the
approvals would end up killing us. We learned quickly who we needed to talk to and convince to grant us the approvals we needed.”
– Jill Medvedow, Director, Boston Institute of Contemporary Art
In 1998, Jill Medvedow was hired as the director of Boston’s Institute of Contemporary Art. Her mandate was to reinvent a museum that had no permanent collection, drew a mere 25,000 visitors a year, and had few members and almost no money. This case demonstrates how Medvedow was able to rebuild (literally and figuratively) a powerless organization by being disciplined, getting people to believe in an idea, and taking many risks.
To demonstrate how an organization, with the right leadership, can effect change with little or no power.