Lawrence M. Small, the head of the Smithsonian since 2000, has resigned. According to a press release on the Smithsonian web site, Small submitted his letter of resignation on Saturday and the Board of Regents met on Sunday and accepted it. Since January Small has been the subject of a string of articles in the Washington Post that have criticized his lavish lifestyle at the expense of taxpayers. Small also brokered an exclusive contract with Showtime Networks that can be used to exclude other filmmakers from using the Smithsonian’s collection.
Cristián Samper, currently the director of the Smithsonian’s Museum of Natural History, will be acting secretary while the Regents conduct a nationwide search for a permanent replacement.