Deborah Gribbon has worked all her professional life in art museums, where she has been responsible for acquisition, conservation, exhibition, publication, and interpretation, as well as strategic planning and large-scale building projects. Deborah was the first curator of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston (1978-84), then moved to Los Angeles to join the staff of the J. Paul Getty Museum, where during the course of twenty years, she served as Assistant Director, then Chief Curator, then Deputy Director, and, finally, Director of the Museum and Vice President of the J. Paul Getty Trust. After resigning from the Getty in 2004, she returned to museum work at the Cleveland Museum of Art as the Interim Director in 2009 and 2010, and later as Interim Deputy Director from 2013 to 2015.
Deborah was a Trustee of the Association of Art Museum Directors (AAMD) in 2003-04. She was a key participant in the AAMD’s Task Force on Collecting Archeological Materials and Ancient Art that issued its report in 2004. She was also a Director of the Museum Domain Management Association (2000-04) and a member of the Governing Board of the Courtauld Institute of Art in London (2001-04). She has served as a peer reviewer for accreditation for the American Association of Museums.
Deborah is committed to making art more accessible and meaningful to a broad public. She chaired the AAMD’s Committee on Education and Community Issues and while at the Getty, redefined the Museum’s approach to education: encouraging visitors to look closely, and providing useful information on the artistic, social, and historical context of works in the collection. She also oversaw the creation of an advanced multi-media system for providing information about the collection to visitors and putting the content on the Getty website that became a model for other museums.
Born and raised in Washington, D.C., Deborah graduated from Wellesley College where she majored in art history, was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and named a Durant Scholar. She received an M.A. and Ph.D. in Fine Arts from Harvard University.
Deborah lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Winston Alt, M.D., Ph.D. They have two grown daughters, Sarah Alt and Jane Alt.
Deborah joined the Board of P.S. ARTS in 2016.