NEWS A New President for the MEIS

meisBy Daniel Reichel

Dario Disegni is the new president of the Foundation of the National Museum of Italian Judaism and the Shoah of Ferrara (MEIS). He was appointed by the Minister of Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism, Dario Franceschini. “I am grateful to the Minister for his trust in me. It is an honor and at the same time a very challenging position,” Disegni told Pagine Ebraiche.

“During my mandate we will proceed to the completion and the inauguration of the museum itself,” continued Disegni, also currently president of the Jewish Community of Turin and Foundation for Jewish Cultural Heritage in Italy.

“We must create a great quality project for the museum, taking into account that nowadays museums are no longer just exhibitions of collections but also cultural and research centers as well as a place for social gatherings. These will be the guiding principles of the work that lies ahead.”

Disegni succeeds Riccardo Calimani, president of MEIS since 2008, who was thanked by Minister Franceschini for the work he has done. “While thanking Riccardo Calimani for his invaluable work, – said the Minister – I express to President Disegni and the entire board my best wishes of good work for the completion of this important cultural reality.”

Disegni said he was “very happy that the previous Council had been confirmed,” because it is “made up of people with excellent professional skills.”

To sit on the Board, along with the president of the Union of Italian Jewish Communities, Renzo Gattegna, Carla Di Francesco, appointed by Mibact (Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism), Massimo Maisto, representing the City of Ferrara, and Massimo Mezzetti for the Emilia Romagna Region.

“The appointment of the President and confirmation of the board, – said Minister Franceschini – is another important step towards the concrete realization of the MEIS of Ferrara as well as for the significant resources, 7 million euros for the next two years.” The funds were allocated with a strategic plan called Major Cultural Projects.

The Foundation’s Board will meet in mid-January. “One of the first steps will be the approval of an announcement for selection of the Director of MEIS. It is, said Disegni, a very important step. We have to find a figure of great stature and quality who will be able to prepare the cultural projects of the Museum together with the Scientific Committee.”

“The opening of the museum, the realization of which the Italian state is contributing generously, is eagerly awaited,” Disegni concluded. “The idea is that it becomes a reference point for understanding the history and culture of the Jews in Italy.”