Mark Updegrove, former director of the LBJ Presidential Library, will return to Austin in March as president and chief executive of the LBJ Foundation, a private organization that provides financial and other assistance to the library and the University of Texas’ LBJ School of Public Affairs.
Updegrove ran the presidential library and museum for eight years before leaving in March to become CEO of the National Medal of Honor Museum, which is planned for the Charleston Harbor in Mount Pleasant, S.C.
“We are so fortunate to recruit Mark Updegrove as the full-time president and CEO of the foundation,” said LBJ Foundation Chairman Larry Temple, who cited his leadership of library summits on two seminal aspects of Lyndon B. Johnson’s presidency, civil rights and the Vietnam War.
Temple also praised Updegrove’s accomplishments as an author, public speaker and inspiration for “An Evening With” series of speakers at the library.
Updegrove will step down from his job with the National Medal of Honor Museum in January. He told the Statesman that he would undergo treatment to resolve a case of early stage prostate cancer before beginning work at the foundation March 1.
“We have very deep roots in the Austin community,” Updegrove said. “When the LBJ Foundation reached out and said there was an opportunity to lead the foundation, my ears perked up. I was thrilled with the notion of being involved with all things LBJ. I look forward to leading the 50th anniversary events recognizing LBJ’s momentous last full year in office, 1968.”
His appointment involves some reshuffling of titles at the foundation. Its president, Elizabeth Christian, is losing that title but becoming a vice chairwoman, while Temple will continue as chairman and lose the CEO title. Amy Barbee, currently executive director, will become vice president.