Judi Dutcher, President and Director, The Museum of Russian Art

Judi Dutcher is a former attorney and previously served as Minnesota state auditor and president of the Minnesota Community Foundation. She recently ran for lieutenant governor. Dutcher became president and director of The Museum of Russian Art (TMORA) in May 2007.

I was born and raised in:
I was born in Alpena, Mich., and raised outside of Ann Arbor, Mich.

I currently reside in:
Minnetonka, Minn.

Age: 44

Five things I love about the Twin Cities:
1. Minnesota’s public schools

2. The weather, all four seasons

3. My family, including my parents and sisters, resides here too.

4. The cultural opportunities and diversity

5. This is a state that is centered around outdoor activities and healthy lifestyles.

Favorite hidden treasure:
The Museum of Russian Art—I didn’t know about it even a year ago. TMORA is a great community asset. No one I’ve met who has come here has left here not completely blown away. I think the museum is the right size for people. This is someplace you can come, spend a few hours and not only learn more about the Russian people and the Russian culture, but have that feeling that you get when you are at a great museum.

Why did you end up at TMORA?
What drew me to this nonprofit was the potential for growth and the feeling that it is not only a Minnesota asset, but also that it is going to be a destination point nationally. As an individual you look for careers that really stretch you and give you opportunities to learn, and I think when you stop learning and growing that’s when you stagnate in your job and it’s not fun anymore. Art is something I am very interested in—I do a lot of art myself.

What distinguishes the Twin Cities art scene?
The fact that there are so many different venues and genres here that are all of the utmost quality, whether it is the MIA or the Weisman or the Walker. It’s just amazing to me the diversity of the arts that are here and the quality of the arts that are here. No matter what your particular interest is, whatever type of art you gravitate toward, whether it’s performing arts or visual art, there’s something there for you. And we are a community that values art, we understand that it enriches and it makes Minneapolis-St. Paul the community that it is and Minnesota the state that it is. I think that’s what makes it fun.