Department of Heritage and Arts Executive Director Steps Down

After five years as the executive director of the Utah Department of Heritage and Arts, Julie Fisher will step down at the end of August to accept a management position at a global consulting firm.

Prior to her service with Heritage and Arts, Fisher served four terms in the Utah House of Representatives.

“Heritage and Arts represents the heart and soul of Utah,” Fisher said. “It has been an honor for me to work with so many talented and dedicated people who come to work each day focused on making Utah a better place to live.”

During her tenure as executive director, Fisher led the successful transition from the former Department of Community and Culture to the department’s current organizational structure. She also oversaw the digitization and cataloging of state historical records and more than 30,000 artifacts. The entire state art collection is now available for viewing online. Fisher also spearheaded efforts to significantly expand Gov. Herbert’s annual Native American Summit.

“Julie leaves a legacy of stewardship of Utah’s unique cultural identity and resources,” Gov. Herbert said. “She has fostered a commitment to accountability and efficiency in the management of taxpayer dollars and has laid a foundation which will support the department into the future.”

Brian Somers, who was appointed deputy director of the department in February 2013, will serve as the interim executive director while a search for a new director is conducted.  

“Julie has brought together a diverse group of divisions in a way that encourages collaboration in improving the lives of Utahns,” Somers said. “On behalf of all employees in the Department of Heritage and Arts, we thank her for her long public service as our executive director and in the legislature and wish her well in her future endeavors in the private sector.”