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Judy Green named new Comer Museum & Arts Center director


SYLACAUGA, Ala. – The new director of the Isabel Anderson Comer Museum & Arts Center has been decided.

Judy Green has been selected as the new director, and she began in her role last week. She takes over for former director Donna Rentfrow who resigned last fall.

Green got involved with the museum at the beginning of 2020 with her husband as they were interested in displaying pieces in the “Art in Public Spaces” fundraiser.

She retired from her human resources position at Walmart after 28 years. After investing herself in the museum for the past year and a half, Green wanted to give more time and effort to the museum.

The vacant spot of director seemed to be an obvious place to land for Green. Now, the first steps to reintroducing the community to the Comer Museum became clear.

“First, I want to focus on getting the gift shop back to being artsy and where the displays say, ‘Come buy me!"” Green remarked. Including the gift shop, many items and pieces located in the museum & arts center have price listings.

For the long term Green hopes to increase membership. There is currently no fee to become a member, but donations are encouraged.

“There’s people that live [in Sylacauga] that have never been here,” said Green. “I want to get more people aware that we’re here. Some of the exhibits we have are amazing.”

From the Jim Nabors memorabilia collection to the replica of the Hodges Meteorite, the museum has plenty to check out. The arts center presents students’ artwork from local schools and a monthly featured artist, too. For February it is Christy Rae Emfinger, and in March the featured artist will be Green herself.

“I take and repurpose jewelry,” Green explained when asked about her artwork style. “I visit thrift stores and estate sales. I see necklaces and earrings and chains that are busted up, and I [create] with that.” She then models the jewelry to look like things such as angels, butterflies, or crosses.

A few examples of Green’s work is provided below. Every featured artist has a reception that typically takes place on the third Thursday night of the month, and Green invites the community to come to Emfinger’s recpetion on Feb. 17 and to the museum & arts center during the operating hours of 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Saturday.

“There’s so much here to see,” expressed Green. “You just can’t come in here and spend 10, 15 minutes. You’ll be here for hours.”

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