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History Museum names interim president

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Bob Cox, a former senior vice president at Emerson, has been named interim president of the Missouri History Museum, starting on Monday.

Cox, whose job will be part time, is expected to serve until the museum selects a permanent replacement for Robert Archibald, who resigned as president of the museum late last year in the wake of controversy over his compensation and the purchase of land for a community center that was never developed.

John Roberts, head of the museum's board of trustees, has been serving as de facto president since Archibald's departure. In a statement, he said the hiring of Cox, 67, "will help provide great stability to the museum during our search for a new president."

A search committee has begun the process of finding a permanent replacement for Archibald, who is coming to the end of a six-month consulting contract with the museum that is paying him $270,000.

Under terms of his contract, Cox will be the museum's chief executive officer. He will be paid $85 an hour as an independent contractor, receiving no benefits other than his salary. He will have an office and support staff at the museum, but his contract allows for him to perform much of his work away from the museum.

He will be out of the state for one week each month during June, July and August. His contract says that during that time he will be available to the museum as required, "but you will not charge the museum for any time you spend on its projects."

In his new position, Cox will report to Roberts and the board of trustees. Among his duties will be meeting with major donors, serving as the museum's spokesman, meeting with public officials and taking part in monthly communication sessions with museum employees.

He is also expected to develop summaries for the new president of major museum initiatives, including partnerships with other history organizations, the St. Louis 250 celebration, and its $30 million capital campaign.

Roberts and Romondous Stover, chairman of the museum's subdistrict commission of the Zoo-Museum District, praised Cox and said his experience in management and administration during a 36-year career at Emerson will be a valuable addition to the operations of the museum.

At Emerson, Cox served in a variety of administrative positions, including leading the Emerson Charitable Trust from 2005 until he retired in 2011.

"The Missouri History Museum is a valuable cultural asset to the St. Louis Community and the historical community nationwide," he said in the statement. "I'm honored to lead this outstanding 147-year-old institution as it moves forward into the future."

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