Heather Kuruvilla

Heather Hope Kuruvilla teaches the legal and ethical issues in the arts course in the MA program in Arts Administration.

A museum professional with special interests in the areas of intellectual property, museum governance, civic engagement, and the ethical and thoughtful approach to deaccessioning, Kuruvilla’s past research interests include the intersection of ethics and the law in museum deaccessioning and the impact of the Visual Artists Rights Act on museums. Her seminar article on deaccessioning was awarded honorable mention in the 2011 Lawyers’ Committee for Cultural Heritage Preservation student writing competition. Kuruvilla’s book, A Legal Dictionary for Museum Professionals, is available from Rowman & Littlefield.

Kuruvilla is the recipient of multiple awards, including the CALI Award for Excellence in Cultural Property Law Seminar and the Art Law Award from the Center for Art, Museum & Cultural Heritage Law. She is a Leopold Schepp Foundation Scholar. Kuruvilla has clerked for the Honorable Arlander Keys of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, the Honorable La Quietta Hardy-Campbell of the Circuit Court of Cook County, and the Honorable Melvin Gelade of the New Jersey Superior Court.

Prior to joining the University of Kentucky, Kuruvilla taught ethical and legal issues in museum administration at Seton Hall University. She currently teaches ethical and legal issues in the arts and civic engagement in the MA program in arts administration at Kutztown University.

Kuruvilla also remains active in the museum field, participating in panels at the annual conferences of the American Association for State and Local History and the Mid-Atlantic Association of Museums, as well as at the New Jersey History and Historic Preservation Conference. In addition to teaching and speaking, Kuruvilla has worked in the field as the Interim Director of the Meadowlands Museum, Rights Manager at the Newark Museum, in the education department at Save Ellis Island, and as an independent consultant to Museum Partners Consulting. She has worked as a law clerk to the President of the Chicago History Museum and for the Chicago Public Art Group and a research assistant to Patty Gerstenblith.

Kuruvilla earned a JD and certificate in Art and Museum Law from DePaul University College of Law. She also earned an MA with distinction in Museum Professions from Seton Hall University, a Post- Baccalaureate in Art History from Studio Arts Center International, and a BA in Art History and Psychology from Douglass College at Rutgers University.

Arts Administration
Part-Time Instructor


205 Fine Arts Building