Named Director Emeritus of the Worcester Art Museum in 2011, James Welu joined the staff of the Museum in 1974 as assistant curator and went on to serve 6 years as chief curator and 25 years as director. Born in Dubuque, Iowa, Welu began his career as an artist and taught studio art in college before pursuing further studies in art history. He holds a BA from Loras College, an MA and MFA in studio art from the University of Notre Dame, a PhD in art history from Boston University, and honorary degrees from the College of the Holy Cross, Loras College, Clark University, and Assumption College. A specialist in 17th-century Dutch and Flemish art, Welu has published and lectured widely and organized a variety of exhibitions, including Judith Leyster: A Dutch Master and Her World. Welu served as president of the Association of Art Museum Directors and chair of the Accreditation Commission of the American Alliance of Museums. He has also served on the advisory council for the Princeton University Art Museum and the Snite Museum of Art at the University of Notre Dame and is active in numerous organizations in the Worcester community.