Collecting Stories: Connecting Objects, funded by The Nathan Cummings Foundation and John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, is a museum/community-focused initiative designed to engage communities in cataloguing by connecting oral histories with cultural objects. As a result of working with museums across the country, the Collecting Stories website provides a toolkit, demonstration projects and other online resources. [+]
Barbara Andrews joined the staff of the National Civil Rights Museum in 1992 as Director of Curatorial Services. She administers collections, exhibitions, educational services, tour and volunteer programs, and is the staff liaison to the project team working on the Museum's expansion, Exploring the Legacy. One of her current major projects is development of Voices of Freedom, a project supported initiative to gather local, regional and national stories from witnesses and participants to the civil rights movement from the period 1950 through 1970. Barbara Andrews came to the Museum with eleven years of arts and museum administrative experience, notably as Registrar with the Ohio Foundation on the Arts, where she took on major responsibilities in the Touring Exhibitions Service following college at The Ohio State University in Columbus.
Margaret Archuleta (Tewa/Hispanic), Formerly Arts and Humanities Project Specialist for Achein: The Lifelong Learning Center, Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) in Santa Fe, NM, also served as Director at the IAIA Museum, and was 2002-2003 Gordon Russell Visiting Professor at Dartmouth College in Hanover. From 1987 to 2001, as Curator of Fine Art at the Heard Museum in Phoenix, AZ, her work included the landmark exhibitions, Shared Visions: Native American Painters and Sculptors in the Twentieth Century (1991) and Remembering Our Indian School Days: The Boarding School Experience (2000). In 1997, First Lady Hillary Clinton recognized her success by inviting her to curate an exhibition of Native American sculpture for the Jacqueline Kennedy Garden. She is well published and has lectured extensively, both nationally and internationally, about Native American Fine Art.
Doreen Bolger joined The Baltimore Museum of Art as Director in 1998. Previously, she served as Director of the Museum of Art at the Rhode Island School of Design, Curator of Paintings and Sculpture at the Amon Carter Museum in Texas, Curator of American Paintings and Sculpture, and Manager of The Henry R. Luce Center for the Study of American Art at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. With a Ph.D. in Art History from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, her publication credits include: authorship of American Paintings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Volume III, co-authorship of American Painters of Modern Life: Impressionism and Realism (in association with Harry N. Abrams), and publication editor and contributor to the exhibition In Pursuit of Beauty: Americans and the Aesthetic Movement.
Alan Brody Associate Provost for the Arts at MIT, is the senior administration official responsible for the oversight of creative arts activities throughout the Institute, including the Museum Loan Network. Alan Brody serves as advisor to the Provost and the President on non-academic activities related to the arts, is responsible for resource development in the arts, and chairs the Creative Arts Council. He is an accomplished, and much awarded, author, playwright, director and producer of dramas and operas. His work includes a collaborative project with composer Peter Child on the dramatic oratorio, Reckoning Time: A Song of Walt Whitman. His original plays include Invention for Fathers and Sons, The Company of Angels, and The Housewives of Mannheim, all of which received prestigious awards.
Cassie Chinn Program Director at the Wing Luke Asian Museum, manages and coordinates planning and implementation of exhibition, collection, public programming and education initiatives in collaboration with community members. In her 10 plus years with the museum, she has worked with numerous community advisory committees and community members to create exhibitions, gather oral histories, and produce other museum projects. She holds a BA and MA in art history as well as a Master in Teaching.
John T. Esaki is currently Director of the Frank H. Watase Media Arts Center, the digital video production unit of the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles. In the past year, he has planned and supervised the recording and processing of twenty-five video life histories for the Museum’s Nikkei Legacy Project. His directing credits include: Harsh Canvas: The Art & Life of Henry Sugimoto; Top of Their Game; The Bracelet; Words, Weavings & Songs; and Eyewitness: Stan Honda. He has taught at the middle school and post-doctoral levels. He received a BA in English from the University of California, Berkeley, a Masters of Fine Arts in film production at UCLA, and was a Post Doctoral Fellow at the UCLA Asian American Studies Center.
Renee Brummell Franklin is Head of Community and School Programs for the Saint Louis Art Museum, where she is responsible for such programs as Arts in the Basic. She also oversees the Museum’s Teacher Services, its annual minority fellowship, and a number of community programs. Through education and outreach, Renee Franklin strives to develop new audiences for art and take the Art Museum out into the community. In previous work, she was director of education and public programs for Worldways Children’s Museum and an educator for New City School. She holds a Master’s degree in education from Webster University in St. Louis and an undergraduate degree in business administration from Towson University in Baltimore.
Ray Gonyea was appointed as Curator of Native American Arts and Culture at the Eiteljorg Museum in Indianapolis in 1995. He is a member of the Onondaga Indian Nation, capitol of the historic Iroquois Six Nation Confederacy. At the Eiteljorg, one of his main tasks is to reflect Native American thinking and opinion in programs of native content, and to promote native inclusion in the museums public programs. He came to the Eiteljorg from the National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian Institution, where he served as their first Repatriation Coordinator. Ray Gonyea’s previous work in the arts includes being an artist, curating exhibitions of contemporary arts and the historic cultures of Native Americans, and being a Museum Director.
Ronald Grele currently conducts interviews with women Columbia Law School graduates for a Columbia Oral History community history project that documents the social and cultural history of Harlem. Before his previous Directorship of the Columbia University Oral History Research Office, he directed the Oral History Program at UCLA and served as Research Director at the New Jersey Historical Commission and Assistant Director of the Ford Foundation Oral History Project. In 1988, he was elected President of the Oral History Association and, for a number of years, was editor of The International Journal of Oral History. Ronald Grele is the Author of Envelopes of Sound: The Art of Oral History among other works. He has served as a consultant on a number of oral history projects and for a number of museums and historical agencies. He received his doctorate from Rutgers University.
James G. Leventhal heads up the Development efforts at the Judah L. Magnes Museum in Berkeley, CA. The Magnes is a Jewish Museum with an over-forty-year history which now boasts the third largest collection of Jewish Art and Judaica in the United States. James Leventhal worked for eight years at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, including six years in the Museum's Development Office. As Senior Development Officer for Information Systems, he was involved in every aspect of the Metropolitan Museum's fund raising. James Leventhal began his tenure at the Metropolitan as a Research Intern in the Department of European Paintings. He studied undergraduate Art History, Anthropology and Studio Art at NYU, and obtained his Master's in Art History and Museology from the City College of New York.
Steven Lubar is Professor of American Civilization and Director of the John Nicholas Brown Center at Brown University. From 1982 to 2004, he was a curator and department chair in the history of technology at the National Museum of American History. Steven Lubar is the author, co-author or editor of six books and over 40 articles on the history of technology, material culture, and public history including, most recently, Legacies: Collecting America’s History at the Smithsonian. A 1976 graduate of MIT, he received his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in 1983.
Kevin Kooistra-Manning community historian of the Western Heritage Center, performs exhibit design, historic research, grant-writing, special projects, and collections management for a community-oriented museum in Billings, Montana. He has worked as a historian, cultural anthropologist, archaeologist, and scriptwriter. He has an undergraduate Sociology / Anthropology Degree from Montana State University-Bozeman and a Masters Degree in Applied Anthropology from Northern Arizona University.
Melissa McLoud a public historian, directs the Breene M. Kerr Center for Chesapeake Studies at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum. The Center conducts and promotes original research in the history of the Bay, and oversees the museum’s curatorial, exhibition, and education activities. Melissa McLoud has twenty years of experience in museum exhibition and program development which includes directing the exhibitions department at the National Building Museum, developing educational programs at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History, and working as a Program Officer in the Museums Program at the National Endowment for the Humanities. She has a doctorate in American Studies with a focus on the history of the building trades.
Beverly Morgan-Welch currently Executive Director of the Museum of Afro-American History, Inc., began her career as Executive Director of the Greater Hartford Arts Council, where she operated the Hartford Courant Arts Center and established the Amistad Foundation, a collection of more than 6,000 African American objects of art and artifacts. In senior management at the Wadsworth Athenaeum, she was Executive Producer of Paint by Mr. Amos Ferguson, A Connecticut Public Television special nominated for a New England Emmy Award. She also raised funds for the Bishop Desmond Tutu Southern African Refugee Scholarship Fund so that eight students could attend Connecticut colleges and universities. In other interests, she is an active advocate for Corporate Social Responsibility and maintains memberships in a number of Massachusetts Historical and Cultural Societies.
Vasundhara Prabhu is presently Deputy Director for Interpretation & Education at the Peabody Essex Museum, in Salem MA where she helps lead the museum’s interpretation strategies: including exhibition conception, development, related labels, gallery guides, interactive spaces, websites, and DVD productions. Vas Prabhu was formerly the Director of Education at the Fine Arts Museums, San Francisco; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; the Boston Children’s Museum; and Cornell University’s art museum. She received the AAM 2002 Award for Excellence in Museum Education Practice. Her undergraduate work was at Cornell University and she has an MA from Bank Street College of Education.
Clement Alexander Price is Board of Governors' Distinguished Service Professor of History and Director of the Institute on Ethnicity, Culture, and the Modern Experience at Rutgers University, Newark Campus. In 1999, the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching named him CASE New Jersey Professor of the Year. Clement Price teaches courses that span American history, including: The Development of the United States, Afro-American History, Civil War and Reconstruction, History of the Civil Rights Movement, and Memory and History. His publications include Freedom Not Far Distant: A Documentary History of Afro-Americans in New Jersey, and Many Voices, Many Opportunities: Cultural Pluralism and American Arts Policy. Most recently, he published "Race, Blackness, and Modernism During the Harlem Renaissance,” a foreword for the Encyclopedia of the Harlem Renaissance.
Lori Starr as Senior Vice President of the Skirball Cultural Center and Director of the Skirball Museum, oversees production content of all of the Skirball’s departments, including Programs, Education, Lifelong Learning, and the Museum. She is responsible for building alliances between the Skirball and other educational, cultural, philanthropic, and community organizations and ensuring appeal to a diverse and growing mix of audiences across all ages and experiences. She also runs the Skirball’s External Affairs Division activities such as community outreach, membership, press and media relations, publications, marketing, visitor services, and advertising. The Skirball Cultural Center, where Starr is on the senior management team, has become one of the most closely studied cultural institutions of its kind with a vibrant repertoire of cultural and civic programs that has attracted over 4 million visitors since opening in 1996.
Nancy Strickland a member of the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina, is currently a senior in the Museum Studies program at the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) interning this summer at the Museum Studies Institute. She is also Chairperson of the Santa Fe Indian Education Parent Committee and President of the IAIA Museum Studies Club. In previous experience, Nancy Strickland was youth and program director at the Metrolina Native American Association, an urban Indian center in Charlotte, North Carolina. Upon completion of her Bachelor’s degree, Nancy aspires to enter a graduate program focused in Art/Museum Education.
Lucy Fowler Williams is The Jeremy A. Sabloff Keeper of American Collections at the University of Pennsylvania Museum, Philadelphia. Her most recent book is a co-edited volume entitled Native American Voices on Identity, Art, and Culture: Objects of Everlasting Esteem (2005). While at the University of Pennsylvania Museum she has worked closely with Native Americans on issues surrounding the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act, and is Vice-chair of the Museum’s Repatriation Committee. She is particularly interested in meaning in North American material culture, and her current research focuses on historical and contemporary Pueblo textiles and Tlingit clan regalia.
Leslie Willis-Lowry Director of Education & Programs/Archivist at The African American Museum in Philadelphia, has worked in Collections Management and as a researcher/consultant in a number of capacities. Her exhibition work includes: films, television, over twenty-five years of publications, the Charles L. Blockson Afro-American Collection-Temple University Libraries, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, The Studio Museum in Harlem, The Bronx Museum of Art, and Scholastic Books. Leslie Willis-Lowry, a fiber artist and writer for children’s literature, focuses on the advancement of learning and the development of human and spiritual understanding. Her thesis project, Art & Spirituality, reflects and expresses a theological lens to art, linking pathways between language, belief, value, and art. She has a BA in Communication Science from Temple University, Philadelphia, PA, and an MA in Urban Missions at Westminster Theological Seminary, Philadelphia, PA.
Gordon Yellowman curator of Cheyenne Visions II at the Denver Art Museum, began his Historic Preservation and Repatriation work in 1993. He has been a Cheyenne Chief since age 16. In previous work, he was curator for Cheyenne Visions, a photograph exhibit at the Field Museum in Chicago and received the 2002 Native American Cultural Heritage Award. Gordon Yellowman was Featured Artist in the 2nd Annual 2002 Red Earth Master Artist show and received First Place in the Miniatures Division of the 2001 Red Earth Indian Art Festival. He was also fellowship recipient of the Smithsonian Institute’s American Indian Museum Studies Program. His committee and Task Force memberships include Burial Sites Protection and Repatriation Commission, National Congress of the American Indian and the Department of Defense American Indian Steering Committee.
* Titles and organizational affiliation at the time of the Collecting Stories: Connecting Objects convening.
Lori Gross has served as Director of the Museum Loan Network (MLN) since its establishment in 1995. The MLN facilitates the long-term loan of art and objects of cultural heritage among U.S. institutions enabling them to better serve their communities. In her capacity as MLN Director, she has actively promoted collaborations among institutions and a national appreciation and understanding of the value of collections-based and community-focused programming. Under her leadership, MLN has awarded 380 grants to institutions in 51 states and territories, and established an illustrated online database of over 15,000 objects from institutions across the nation. A museum veteran of over 25 years, Lori Gross previously worked at the Canadian Centre for Architecture in Montreal, the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Akron Art Museum, as well as consulting with museum projects internationally.
Mark Alexander Wright has 15 years of museum experience and has served as Program Associate at the Museum Loan Network (MLN) since 1999. Since joining the Museum Loan Network, he has promoted the MLN grant programs and has facilitated collaboration among local, regional and national museums throughout the U.S. Prior to joining the MLN, he was a Research Assistant and Assistant Curator at the Smithsonian Institution’s National African American Museum Project and Center for African American History and Culture where he contributed to numerous exhibitions and publications including Locating the Spirit: Religion and Spirituality in African American Art (1998) and The WPA/FSA Photography of Gordon Parks (1999). Mark Wright holds a B.A. in Art History/Arts Administration & Museology from Drew University and an M.S. Ed. in Educational Leadership from Bank Street College, Graduate School of Education.
Kinshasha Holman Conwill Deputy Director of the National Museum of African American History and Culture at the Smithsonian Institution, formerly an arts, museum, and management consultant, began her career as a visual and performance artist. Before devoting her time to consulting, she was director of The Studio Museum in Harlem, chair of the National Museum Services Board, and Senior Policy Advisor for the Museums & Community initiative of the American Association of Museums. She has also held positions at the Frank Lloyd Wright Hollyhock House and the Museum of the American Indian. She writes and speaks on contemporary art and cultural policy nationally and internationally and serves on advisory panels for major foundations, state arts councils, and federal agencies.
William Keens President of Wolf, Keens & Company, has worked with nonprofit organizations and foundations at local, regional, and national levels for more than 15 years. His projects include work with The Saint Louis Art Museum, the Smithsonian Institution, the Getty Trust, and The Kennedy Center. In particular, he prepares client groups to address complex situations by offering services in planning, board development, staff development, research, evaluation, and other processes. He is widely recognized for facilitating discussion of vexing policy and planning questions, articulating and analyzing issues, and providing clear guidance on how to proceed.
Caroline Marshall joined Wolf, Keens in 1992 to assist with the Wallace-Reader’s Digest Fund’s Writers Awards Program, which is a groundbreaking effort to engage new audiences in literature by inviting writers to collaborate with community organizations. Since then she has worked with many funders, including CPB and IMLS, on the Partnership for a Nation of Learners initiative. In recognition of her work, clients frequently call on her to capture the breadth of complex discussions. She prepared Museum as a Catalyst for Interdisciplinary Collaboration: Beginning a Conversation for the Museum Loan Network and, more recently, Envisioning Convergence: Cultural Conservation, Environmental Stewardship, and Sustainable Livelihoods for the Fund for Folk Culture.