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MoCA North Miami Executive Director Fired

After being placed on administrative leave for several weeks following a sexual harassment complaint, the director of the Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami, Babacar M’Bow, has been fired from his post. According to a termination letter sent to M’Bow by interim city director Arthur Sorey, the allegations of sexual harassment as well as a lack of appropriate supervision over employees are cited as cause for dismissal. The decision was made on December 31 following an investigation into a complaint made by Tiffany Madera, the museum's outreach and programming manager.

Several employees apparently testified that M’Bow often used graphic and sexual language and innuendo to and around staff members, particularly women. Madera noted in her complaint against him that the director had commented on her sex life, discussed the size of his genitalia, and instructed employees they needed to “get laid.” Her complaint cited several incidents, including a museum staff meeting on December 8 where M’Bow allegedly told the museum’s assistant director, Alan Waufle, to take a female vendor out and “show her a good time.” Waufle called the woman a “skanky bitch,” which Madera objected to, and asserts that M’Bow then interrupted her and told her to stop using “feminist rhetoric.”

According to the city’s investigative report, Waufle also described multiple instances of the director using inappropriately sexual language. In his interview with investigators, M’Bow denied the allegations against him made by Madera and other members of the staff, saying “it is clear that the allegations are false; they are the reaction of an employee who thought I was going to fire her on Jan. 1…I am married to a feminist scholar, this complaint is not part of my intellectual development, I have strong feminist politics.” The city chief of staff Natasha Colebrook-Williams will lead the museum on an interim basis while Sorey and the city council begin an official search for a new director.