Dina M. Bennett is the Director of Collections and Curatorial Affairs at the American Jazz Museum, and an ethnomusicologist who specializes in African American music and culture. She most recently served as the founding Curatorial Director of the National Museum of African American Music (NMAAM) in Nashville, the first national institution dedicated to educating, preserving, and celebrating more than fifty music genres and subgenres that were created, influenced, and inspired by African Americans.
As an ethnomusicologist, Bennett specializes in African American music-culture and has honed her expertise in telling the story of African American music and its various genres through her curatorial work in music museums. With years of experience in exhibition design, she brings a strong understanding of storytelling and the importance of establishing the historical and cultural context for interpretation. She has been responsible for programming partnerships with public schools, universities, and organizations; teacher and student resources; curriculum design for museum docent programs; and developing public and educational programming focused on African American history and music-culture for various audiences and constituents.
Dr. Bennett received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication Studies from Washburn University, a master’s degree in College Student Personnel from Kansas State University, and a Ph.D. in Ethnomusicology with a minor in African American & African Diaspora Studies from Indiana University. She has previously served as the Associate Director of the Mulvane Art Museum at Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas; and the Director of Education at the B.B. King Museum and Delta Interpretive Center in Indianola, Mississippi.