Aviary Names New Executive Director


The National Aviary has named a new Executive Director – the chief operators officer Patrick Mangus. He has been in that position for two years.

Other staffing changes include the promotion of Cheryl Tracy to the position of chief financial officer. Tracy has held the position of director of finance and human resources for the past two years.

Marketing professional Ida D’Errico will take over the Aviary’s capital campaign, which will be used to help pay for renovations and an expansion including classrooms, a bird theater and a raptor encounter center.

“We are delighted to have such a strong leadership team in place to carry forward the many exciting changes planned and taking shape at the National Aviary,” board chair Mike Flinn said.

Linda Dickerson, the CEO of the National Aviary, resigned Tuesday, Jan. 27 citing incompatibility of business practices.

Pat Mangus, the chief operating officer for the Aviary, told The Northside Chronicle Monday, Jan. 26 at 5 p.m. that he had no knowledge of Dickerson leaving, and that he only learned about the resignation Tuesday.

Dickerson has been the CEO of the Aviary since March, 2007 – less than two years.

According to her letter of resignation, which the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette obtained a copy of, she said that "My decision stems from the realization that the institution’s business practices are incompatible with mine."

The National Aviary released a statement about Dickerson’s resignation on Tuesday, Jan. 27.

“While we regret Linda’s departure, we are appreciative of the contributions she has made to the National Aviary and its vision during her tenure with us and we wish her all the best.”

In an earlier press release when Dickerson was named to the post, she cited development as one of her main goals. As of that time, the Aviary was “halfway through a $22.5 million capital campaign.”

“I’m moving from the background into the foreground to shape the future of an organization about which I care deeply and passionately,” Dickerson said. “I’m thrilled and honored that the Board chose me for this vital role in furthering the National Aviary’s continued successful development.”

She had served on the board of the National Aviary since 2003.

The Aviary also released an additional statement about their plans for the future from Mike Flinn, National Aviary Board Chair.

“The National Aviary is in the midst of significant and exciting change. In 2008 we expanded our bird collection, completed an organization-wide redesign of signage and graphics, and completed a master planning process that creates a vision for the Aviary over the next decade.

We have finalized design plans for an expansion and renovation project that includes the construction of the world’s first indoor free-flight bird theater, and in May we will celebrate the grand opening of our new open air African penguin exhibit, Penguin Point, which is currently under construction.

These additions, together with the planned rooftop raptor encounter, new exhibits, and updated classrooms, will greatly enhance our educational programming and overall visitor experience.” 

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