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Ex-Oxnard College Chief Appointed to Run Museum

May 04, 1989

Ed Robings, who retired last year as president of Oxnard College, has been appointed executive director of the Ventura County Museum of Art and History.

He announced this week that he will resign as director of Oxnard's World Trade Center, which promotes international trade in Ventura County.

"There is hardly anything I would have left the Trade Center for," said Robings, 60, "and the Ventura County Museum of Art and History is one of those things."

Robings will fill the post vacated last August when Keith Foster resigned to become director of the Redding Museum and Art Center. The Ventura museum's acting director, Frances Johnson-Pietro, will return to her job as curator of exhibits.

Museum officials said they were impressed with the credentials of Robings, a gregarious man with a booming voice who retired from Oxnard College after seven years as president.

He has been president of the Oxnard Chamber of Commerce and has been active in community organizations and events ranging from United Way to the Strawberry Festival. In November, he unsuccessfully ran for the Oxnard City Council.

"He has managerial skills," said Dorcas H. Thille, museum board president. "And we felt we needed a manager."

Museum officials hope that Robings, who begins work May 15, will increase Oxnard's participation in the museum, which is more closely associated with Ventura city history than with other county areas. "In fact, it's a countywide museum," Thille said.

The Trade Center's board of directors plans to meet tomorrow to discuss replacing Robings, said Nao Takasugi, center president and Oxnard mayor.

Robings has been on the executive board of the Ventura County Museum of History and Art since October. His wife Joan has served as a museum docent since 1981.

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