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Ships of the Sea Names Molly Carrott Taylor New Executive Director 












The Board of Trustees of Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum is pleased to announce the selection of Molly Carrott Taylor as the new executive director, effective March 1, 2023.


“Molly Taylor’s museum and business development experience is a tremendous asset to Ships of the Sea,” said Laura Collins, the chair of the Board. “Molly will bring focus to our strategic planning and will be critical to broadening the museum’s outreach to new audiences. Her skillset is vital to Ships of the Sea’s success in expanding our scope as the region’s center of excellence in maritime history while bringing to life the unique stories of the William Scarbrough House and Gardens.”


Taylor has a proven record of leading high-performing teams. She began her career at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and later led arts and cultural development on the World Trade Center site for the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation. After relocating to Savannah in 2008, Taylor continued her work at Telfair Museums where she served as director of development and later deputy director, focusing on museum management, strategy, and fundraising. In early 2020, Taylor launched a consulting practice providing both nonprofit and for-profit companies with specialized business development, client acquisition, marketing, and fundraising services. She has served as Ships of the Sea’s business development and fundraising consultant for the past year.


“Ships of the Sea is a key cultural institution,” Taylor said. “The museum shares foundational stories of Savannah—from the maritime history that is Savannah’s history to the Scarbrough House’s use as a school for Black Americans for almost 90 years to the Lane family’s multigenerational, significant contributions. Ships of the Sea is in an unparalleled position to tell incredible stories extending from the Age of Sail to today, as Savannah’s port is recognized as the third busiest container gateway in the nation.”


Eager to get started, Taylor is enthusiastic about the future. “As a collegiate sailor and lifelong lover of the water, I’m excited to reach out to our community and to share Ships of the Sea with residents, scholars, historians, and visitors to our city. I am thrilled to join the museum’s excellent staff and board and to help build on their many decades of impressive accomplishments. My experiences have prepared me to make a unique contribution to Ships of the Sea.”


Taylor is an engaged Savannahian. She has served on the boards of Rotary Club of Downtown Savannah, the Savannah Council on World Affairs, and the Savannah Estate Planning Council, and is currently on the vestry at Christ Church Episcopal. She is a 2015 graduate of Leadership Savannah. She earned her master’s degree in Arts Administration from Columbia University and her bachelor’s degree in Art History from Connecticut College. In 2020, Taylor earned a slot in the prestigious Getty Leadership Institute management program for museum leaders. She and her husband, Geoffrey Taylor, enjoy family life with their two active sons, Finlay and Keating.


Wendy Melton, the museum’s long-time curator, has been promoted to deputy director and curator. “We want to thank Wendy Melton for stepping in as interim executive director,” Collins noted. “Wendy’s steady hand allowed Ships of the Sea to successfully navigate uncertainty during the pandemic. We are delighted that she has accepted this expanded role at the museum.”

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