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March 29, 2013

Venerable but Strife-Torn N.Y. Arts Charity Eyes New Chief

The National Arts Club, a genteel Manhattan institution riven in recent years by internal conflict and allegations of mismanagement, is poised to elect a new president, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Officials with the group said the Rev. Thomas Pike, a retired rector and longtime club member who joined the charity's board earlier this year, will likely be selected to succeed Dianne Bernhard, who took office in 2011 amid accusations of financial impropriety by her predecessor.

The club, founded in 1898 in the tony Gramercy Park neighborhood, hosts exhibitions and aims to connect artists with wealthy patrons. Members credited Ms. Bernhard with restoring order after the departure of O. Aldon James Jr., its president for 25 years, who faces a state inquiry over alleged misuse of charity funds and facilities. Mr. James has denied any wrongdoing and is suing over his ouster from the club.