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Laughlin Phillips Retiring as Museum Director

November 19, 1991

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Laughlin Phillips is retiring as director of The Phillips Collection, which his parents established in their red-brick mansion near Dupont Circle in 1921 as the nation’s first museum of modern art.

Phillips, 67, has been director since 1972 and held the post fulltime for the past 12 years. He said he will continue as board chairman to preserve the ″special character″ of the private, independent museum founded by Duncan and Marjorie Phillips.

Under Phillips’ direction, the museum’s staff, financial support and exhibition space have expanded greatly since 1972. Revenues, for example, rose from $274,584 that year to $4.8 million in 1990. Attendance increased from 63,000 to nearly 155,500 people.

Phillips formerly worked as a CIA officer in Vietnam and Iran and helped start Washingtonian magazine.

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