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Hyde moves forward with new interim director

GLENS FALLS — On Wednesday afternoon, the July sun gently streamed window squared patterns across sculptures in the famed painters’ courtyard of The Hyde House in Glens Falls.

New Interim Director of The Hyde Collection, Anne Saile, who was only half-way through her second day on the job, pointed to a second-floor opened window.

“That’s Mrs. Hyde’s bedroom,” she said, recounting the story of how Charlotte Pruyn Hyde would look out onto the courtyard while area painters brushed oils into mediums that found their way to canvases and new creations.

“There is something very special about The Hyde,” she said. “If people have not visited The Hyde recently, they should come, and if they have children or grandchildren, they should take advantage of it,” she said. “Love of art is a gift you can give a child for a lifetime, and our focus is the education of others.”

Last week, former Director Erin Coe left The Hyde Collection after 17 years of working with the museum she loves for a new position as director of The Palmer Museum of Art at Penn State University.

And now, to ease the transition toward a new director, Saile, an international business leader and entrepreneur, plans on guiding the museum forward.

“Getting Anne Saile to sign on as our interim director ... she has worked closely with Erin and she has the capability to make the transition as smooth as possible,” said Karl Seitz, chairman of the Hyde Board of Trustees, in an interview last month, adding that they are conducting a national search for a new director.

When offered the interim position, Saile said it was an easy decision.

“I knew right away what a thrill it would be,” she said. “And to be in such a magnificent place ...”

While at The Hyde, Coe was pivotal in transforming it into an art museum that offers the region a collection previously reserved for urban museums in places like New York City. Bringing modern art to the Glens Falls museum, following the recent $11 million gift from Werner Feibes and the late James Schmitt, dramatically changed The Hyde’s story.

And during the construction of the 1,500-square-foot Feibes & Schmitt Gallery, Saile worked with The Hyde as a consultant and assisted Coe with a recent $500,000 fundraising initiative.

“I have raised hundreds of millions of dollars,” she said. “I understand philanthropy ... I want to accelerate the momentum we have experienced in the past.”

Saile said that the Feibes & Schmitt gift may have opened the door for other legacy donors. “They have laid the groundwork for others,” she said.

Still, her main focus initially is supporting The Hyde team and keeping the momentum they have started moving forward.

“I am just so grateful to all the people who have helped build this legacy,” she said.

This fall Saile, the owner of The Saile Group, will be honored as the 2017 Resourceful Woman of the Year by the YWCA of the Greater Capital Region.

She was president and CEO of Bellevue Hospital for nearly a decade and before joining Bellevue, Saile was the executive director of the New York State Office of Professional and Medical Conduct.

“My main focus is running businesses, and it is great to step in and see us through to a new director,” she said.

Kathleen Phalen-Tomaselli is a features writer at The Post-Star. She can be reached at kphalen-tomaselli@poststar.com for comments or story ideas.

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