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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The National Civil Rights Museum announced it has selected Dr. Russell Wigginton as its next president.

According to the museum, Wigginton brings nearly 30 years of experience to the role when he officially takes over on August 1. An author and William Randolph Hearst Fellow, Wigginton was an administrator and history professor at his alma mater Rhodes College.

He also previously served the Memphis community on several boards including those at the National Civil Rights Museum, Memphis Zoo, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Facing History and Ourselves, Ballet Memphis, ArtsMemphis, UrbanArt Commission, Bridges USA, St. George’s Independent Schools, Promise Academy Charter School and KIPP Schools.

“I am honored to be chosen to serve as the President of the National Civil Rights Museum,” said Wigginton. “During this critical time in our nation, the Museum’s physical place and all that it represents plays a vital role in understanding our nation’s history in the areas of civil and human rights–and how that impacts our nation today. I welcome the opportunity to work with a committed staff to challenge and inspire us all to seek justice and equality for everyone.”

Wigginton replaces Terri Lee Freeman who resigned from the position in February.