Indianapolis, IN — Joe Hale, a corporate and non-profit veteran with more than four decades in leadership positions — including with Cinergy Corporation, the Indianapolis Symphony and the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art in Indianapolis — will be the next president of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum.
Hale will begin participating in planning and other activities for the museum on an unofficial basis immediately, and will start his official duties Jan. 5. He will be
responsible for every aspect of the museum’s operations, curatorial duties and endeavors, programming, communications and advertising, corporate partnerships, philanthropic initiatives and membership growth.
A native Hoosier and Hanover College graduate, Hale returns to central Indiana after five years as executive director of The Dreamland, a year-round non-profit film and cultural center on Nantucket Island, Massachusetts. During his tenure, Hale led a transformation of The Dreamland from operating at an annual deficit to a strong surplus, while creating a pillar within the Nantucket community and year-round destination with a variety of programming such as daily films, live theatre, concerts and a renowned speaker series.
Throughout his career, Hale has raised more than $110 million for charitable organizations and led capital campaigns that fostered new brick-and-mortar facilities for arts and community organizations.
“I look forward to joining the iconic Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum as President,” said Hale. “The board’s commitment to transform the museum into the world’s premier automobile racing museum is exhilarating. Plans to build upon the museum’s 64-year history of telling the stories of automobile racing around the world, and to make it even more interactive, experiential, immersive and educational, are exciting. I look forward to working with the board and staff to make their vision a reality, and Linda and I can’t wait to be back home again in Indiana!”
Hale’s more than four decades of leadership experience and track record of corporate and non-profit success were derived through a diverse portfolio of professional fields: public education, commercial real estate sales and marketing, the utility industry, museums and non-profits.
After starting his career as a high school teacher in New Albany, Indiana, and later Germany, Hale joined the Indiana Arts Commission in 1975, moved to a programming role at Historic New Harmony in southwest Indiana, then returned to Indianapolis to lead the Metropolitan Arts Council.
After a decade in commercial real estate, Hale joined PSI Energy in 1992, just before the Plainfield, Indiana-based company merged with Cincinnati Gas & Electric (CG&E) to form Cincinnati-based Cinergy Corp., now part of Duke Energy. He served as interim president of PSI Energy and president of CG&E, circa 2000.
At Cinergy, Hale took on ever-increasing responsibilities, including Chief Communications Officer, while also serving as president of the Cinergy Foundation and managing the non-profit’s popular community programs, including the Cinergy Children’s Museum and Cinergy’s Home for the Holidays.
In 2008 he founded Columbus, Ohio-based Medilux with longtime Hoosier executive and political leader Al Hubbard. Hale then co-founded and led the Global BrightLight Foundation, which became the world’s largest non-governmental organization providing solar-powered lanterns to off-grid families and communities around the world.
In addition to his leadership roles with the Indianapolis Symphony and the Eiteljorg Museum, Hale has also been involved with the Indiana Repertory Theatre, Dance Kaleidoscope, and is a past president of the Penrod Society.