Kristina D. Palmer Takes on Role of Chief Development Officer at the Columbia Museum of Art

CMA Chief Development Officer Kristina D. Palmer. Image courtesy Drew Baron / Columbia Museum of Art.

CMA Chief Development Officer Kristina D. Palmer. Image courtesy Drew Baron / Columbia Museum of Art.

Columbia, S.C. – The Columbia Museum of Art announces that Kristina D. Palmer has accepted the position of chief development officer at the museum. She joined the CMA team as senior development officer in November 2020; in her new position, Palmer oversees the CMA development department, managing all fundraising efforts in order to both sustain and increase individual and institutional support for the museum.

“I could not be happier to recruit Kristina to the team,” says CMA Executive Director Della Watkins. “Kristina has a passion to help arts and culture flourish, and she smartly networks, strategically plans, and confidently communicates. We are thrilled to have her here at the CMA.”

Palmer is an accomplished fundraising professional and strategist with over 20 years of progressive nonprofit leadership experience and a strong passion for arts and cultural institutions. With a keen understanding of donor cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship, Palmer helps organizations thrive by fostering strategic partnerships and a culture of transparency. Her areas of expertise include major gifts, annual giving campaigns, special events, corporate and foundation relations, and board development. Palmer’s fundraising acumen has proven successful in raising and managing annual funding goals exceeding $20 million.

Throughout her career, Palmer has served in various roles including director of development, director of individual gifts, major gifts officer, and chief advancement officer. Prior to her role at the CMA, her fundraising expertise was vital to the success of the famed Apollo Theater in New York City, the African American Museum in Philadelphia, the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture, and the National Park Foundation.

Palmer is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha, the nation’s first and oldest historically Black sorority. A champion of lifelong learning and professional development, she prioritizes strengthening her skill set and expanding her knowledge via participation in programming by the Association of Fundraising Professionals. Always aware of the story behind the art and its historical significance, Palmer collects paintings and functional art pieces, particularly by African American artists. She also enjoys spending time with family and friends, traveling, reading, gardening, and attending theater and concerts in her spare time. A proud Philadelphian, Palmer, like many Philadelphia residents, is an avid fan of her hometown teams.


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