Leatrice Ellzy Expands Reach of Hammonds House Museum

Immediate Past President Paige McKay Kubik, Atlanta West End Rotary Program Director for September 2020, introduced Ms. Leatrice Ellzy, Executive Director of the Hammonds House Museum in Atlanta’s West End, as our speaker. Ms. Ellzy began by stating that she is the third director of Hammonds House Museum, immediately following Ms. Myrna Anderson Fuller, who led the Museum for 12 years and who was preceded by Mr. Edward Spriggs, the founding director for the organization’s first 15 years. Leatrice noted that she’s been the director for four years. The mission of Hammonds House Museum is to preserve, exhibit, interpret and increase public awareness about the contributions that visual artists of African descent have made to world culture. Leatrice also stated that she will be leaving Hammonds House Museum soon to join the Apollo Theater in Harlem in New York City … stating that the Apollo was the only job that could have lured her away as she loves the opportunities and the challenges of Hammonds House Museum. Leatrice emphasized that Ed Spriggs had strong experiences and knowledge in art; Myrna built on the arts and brought the community in, helping to define Hammonds House as a community institution. Leatrice said neither being from the arts, nor a community per se, she’s been devoted to developing and strengthening Hammonds House Museum as an organization. It has been under-resourced but she sees that changing, certainly brought on by the effects of COVID-19, which requires a different format through virtual presentations and exhibits. Hammonds House Museum's first virtual program presented in May 2020 was well received, so she’s using digital resources to present Hammonds House Museum to Atlanta and beyond. She described a number of successful offerings including Conversations About Jazz and Other Distractions with Carl Anthony. She said Hammonds House Museum gets very deep into important conversations and discussions, with lots of great voices and artists, covering literature, music, art expressions, and the impact of COVID-19. Leatrice announced Elevate Atlanta by the City of Atlanta - Mayor's Office of Cultural Affairs will bring its annual ELEVATE public art festival to Atlanta's historic West End neighborhood for the first time in 12 years - Sunday, October 4 to Saturday, October 10, 2020. This year's festival events will be virtual. Programming includes tours arranged by Atlanta West End Rotarian Robert Thompson, studio films, conversations with urban farmers, the Atlanta Ballet, murals, the Rialto Theater, a celebration of The Reverend James Orange, women of change, Get Out the Vote in memory of John Lewis, and offerings by SCAD. Leatrice promises memorable impact; ELEVATE Atlanta says events are free. Learn more at the Hammonds House Museum website.

Posted by Neil Shorthouse
September 4, 2020 2:00pm