MOCAD Fires Director After Allegations of Abuse

Former and current employees allege that Borowy-Reeder has fostered a hostile workplace for people of color.

The Museum of Contemporary Arts Detroit board has fired chief curator and director Elysia Borowy-Reeder after allegations of abuse and racism. 

“Everyone’s got these stories that made them feel unwelcome, or made guests feel unwelcome.” — Lee DeVito, MetroTimes

The art world is going through a reckoning inspired by Black Lives Matter protests where museums across the country are being pushed to address systemic racism within their institutions. The Detroit Institute of Arts is also experiencing its own controversy. 

The MOCAD opened up earlier this summer with two new exhibits. Shortly thereafter, a letter to the museum board signed by former and current employees alleged that Borowy-Reeder had fostered a hostile workplace. 

CultureShift’s Amanda LeClaire spoke with MetroTimes editor Lee DeVito about the allegations prior to Borowy-Reeder being fired. 

“Everyone’s got these stories that made them feel unwelcome, or made guests feel unwelcome,” says DeVito. 

Click on the player above to hear MetroTimes Lee DeVito on the MOCAD controversy.

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  • Amanda LeClaire
    Amanda LeClaire is an award-winning host and producer of CultureShift on 101.9 WDET-FM Detroit’s NPR station. She’s a founding producer of WDET’s flagship news talk show Detroit Today, and a former host/reporter for Arizona Public Media. Amanda is also an artist, certified intuitive and energy healer, and professional tarot reader.