In 1988, while serving as Museum Director and Design Director for The National Geographic Society, Washington, D.C., Jeffrey A. Dering negotiated the “First” US-USSR Cultural Business Joint Venture between The National Geographic Society, Washington, D.C. and The State Hermitage Museum, Saint Petersburg, Russia.
This historic US-USSR Cultural Business Joint Venture Agreement paved the way for Russian museums to independently manage their financial operations; establish financial and cultural joint ventures with Western corporations and museums; and, establish funding opportunities for restoration and conservation of specific art and artifacts, such as the Golden State Carriage of Czar Catherine II (the Great) with funding contributed by Federal Express.
The US-USSR Cultural Business Joint Venture Agreement provided opportunity for Mr. Dering to develop international blockbuster cultural exhibitions, including the highly acclaimed tours of Catherine The Great and Nicholas II and Alexandra: Last Czars of Russia.
As a result of his efforts, Mr. Dering was honored in 1989 as “First” American Museum Director to serve upon an active committee (the Marketing Committee) of a Board of Governors of a Russian museum.
Working with curators of the Hermitage in State Petersburg, with historians and biographers of Catherine II (the Great), and with The National Geographic Society, Mr. Dering developed and catalogued a collection of more than 400 pieces of Fine Art, Decorative Art, Costumes, Jewelry and Historic Artifacts to tell the story of Catherine the Great.
The Catherine the Great Exhibition traveled to Memphis, TN as part of the WONDERS Series of Exhibitions and toured to additional US cities including Dallas, TX and Los Angeles, CA.