Utah Division of Arts & Museums.
Victoria Panella Bourns

SALT LAKE CITY — Victoria Panella Bourns has been named director of the Utah Division of Arts & Museums.

Panella Bourns has directed the Salt Lake County Zoo, Arts and Parks program for the past 12 years. The program distributes approximately $14 million annually to more than 170 arts and cultural organizations. Prior to joining ZAP, she assisted cultural organizations and other nonprofits with strategic planning, board development and executive searches through Panella Consulting.

“Victoria has been a leader in the arts community for decades,” Jill Remington Love, executive director of the Department of Heritage & Arts, said in a statement. “She’s familiar with the division’s role and will have an immediate, positive influence on its many programs.” The division of Arts & Museums is one of six within the department.

Throughout her career, Panella Bourns has worked for some of Utah’s premier organizations, including Repertory Dance Theater, KUER and Salt Lake Acting Company. She served as treasurer for the Performing Arts Coalition during the planning and implementation of the Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center.

Her passion for the arts led her to earn a bachelor’s degree in dance and a master’s degree in arts administration, both from the University of Utah.

She will join division in April after transitioning out of her position with Salt Lake County. She replaces Gay Cookson, who has been named the director of fundraising and partnerships for the Department of Heritage & Arts.