Director's Desk


The Peabody Essex Museum (PEM) is an extraordinary place, one that is designed to lift your spirits, expand your horizons, and ignite your imagination. It is a place of discovery and a place where we hope you will feel at home.

Since its founding in 1799, PEM has been synonymous with community gathering and creative exchange. The museum has remained vital and relevant by continually renewing itself to meet the challenges of its time. In our era, one marked by social unrest and cultural introspection, PEM provides impactful experiences that foster curiosity, empathy, and life-long learning.

It has been a privilege to lead PEM since 2019 and to meet its passionate community of supporters, members, and visitors from around the globe. As museum director, one of the most important things I can do is to listen to our community and to chart a course based on shared ambitions and highest hopes. On this page, I will share the museum’s strategic plan, and information on exciting initiatives that are underway at PEM.

I hope you will join me on this journey and share your best thoughts with me along the way.

Warm regards,
Brian P. Kennedy

Director’s Dialogue

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