Bonnie Pitman

Bonnie Pitman

Distinguished Scholar in Residence at The University of Texas at Dallas.
Co-Director of CISM



Tulane University (M.A., 1972) and a Bachelor of Arts, cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Sweet Briar College in Virginia (B.A., cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, 1968)

Areas of Specialization

The roles of museums with audience engagement, new technologies, and collaborative partnerships, research on Art and Healing.

Pitman joined The University of Texas at Dallas as Distinguished Scholar in Residence and Co-Director of the Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Museums in 2012. Her work focuses on developing interdisciplinary research and program relationships between UTD and cultural, educational, and health institutions.  Working with the School of Arts and Humanities and the Art and Technology program her areas of interest include the roles of museums with audience engagement, new technologies, and collaborative partnerships.

Pitman was the Eugene McDermott Director of the Dallas Museum of Art and also served as Deputy Director for 12 years. Under her leadership the Museum’s artistic excellence and engagement with the community dramatically increased. Her work focused on the development of the museum’s collections, presentations of major exhibitions, audience engagement and the expansion of the museums uses of new technologies.¬† The Dallas Museum of Art’s ArtsNetwork linked the museum’s collections and programs in new ways on the website, introduced Smartphone tours, and uses of social media. She led the development of the Center for Creative Connections and the Research in the Structure Framework for Engaging with Art that increased audience participation in the museum.

Pitman has been a curator, educator, and administrator at the University of California’s Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archives, Seattle Art Museum, New Orleans Museum of Art, Winnipeg Art Gallery and the Bay Area Discovery Museum. 

Pitman has received numerous awards over her career and was recognized most recently with the Award for Distinguished Service to Museums by the American Association of Museums in 2011 recognizing lifetime achievement in the museum field.

She has served on the boards of museum associations including the American Association of Museums (AAM), and as Chair of the AAM Accreditation Commission.  Pitman chaired the AAM’s National Task Force on Museum Education that prepared the landmark policy report Excellence and Equity: Education and the Public Dimension of Museums. She has been a consultant to over 200 museums including art, history and science museums.

Bonnie Pitman is the author of many books, essays and articles and travels often to give lectures.