Igniting a Passion for History – June 12 – Worcester
| Detailed Program |
Robert J. Allison is a professor of history at Suffolk University, where he has received three teaching awards; he also teaches at the Harvard Extension School. His books include A Very Short Introduction to the American Revolution (2015), A Short History of Boston (2004), Stephen Decatur: American Naval Hero (2004), and The Crescent Obscured: The United States and the Muslim World 1776-1815 (2000). He also produced “Before 1776: Life in the American Colonies,” for The Teaching Company’s Great Courses (2009), and is currently producing a video biography of Benjamin Franklin. He earned his doctorate at Harvard (History of American Civilization). He is on the Board of Trustees of the USS CONSTITUTION Museum, president of the South Boston Historical Society, and vice president of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts.
Chuck Arning, starting his 24th year in the National Park Service, has spent all his time in the Blackstone Valley, formerly in the National Heritage Corridor and now in the “new” Blackstone River Valley National Historical Park. Arning has produced over 95 television/videos focusing on the history, cultures, preservation, and stewardship issues of Blackstone Valley. He produces, writes, & hosts the award-winning series “Along the Blackstone” which has aired on the History Channel (1996 – 1998) and has earned Ranger Arning numerous regional and national video awards. Arning was awarded the 1997 National Freeman Tilden Award for Excellence in Interpretation by the National Park Service. In 2002, he was awarded the Freedom Star Award by the National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom. Recently Arning was awarded the 2014 Leadership in Preservation Award from the Blackstone Valley Chamber of Commerce. Arning has worked in partnership with many of the Blackstone Valley’s historical societies, museums, and historic sites on programs connecting history and “sense of place” preservation efforts to stewardship concepts for the people of the Valley. Arning has written for the National Association of Interpreter’s Magazine Legacy and the National Park Service’s Cultural Resource Management Magazine. He is a Member & former Councilor for the American Antiquarian Society, Membership Co-Chair for the National Council on Public History, a former 3-term Board member for New England Historical Association.
Julie Arrison-Bishop is the Special Projects Manager for The House of the Seven Gables Settlement Association in Salem, Mass. Since September 2015, she has been responsible for marketing and public relations, construction management and interpretive planning for the Secret Rooms Project, public program planning, and fundraising to support these endeavors. Arrison-Bishop was previously employed as a site manager for Historic New England and development assistant at the Massachusetts Historical Society. Internship experience included time at the Thornton Burgess Society in Sandwich, Mass. and at Boston National Historic Park as an interpretive park ranger. She has also volunteered or held board positions with the Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site, Friends of Fairsted, the Franklin Park Coalition, Historic Salem, Inc., Destination Salem, and the North of Boston CVB. She is currently president of the Wicked Running Club in Salem, Mass.
Jenifer Bartle is the Digital Library Services Librarian at Wellesley College, where she has worked since 2005. She holds an MS in Library and Information Science and a Certificate of Advanced Studies in Digital Libraries from Syracuse University, as well as an MA in English from the University of Virginia. Her current work has a focus on providing services that promote, facilitate access to, and encourage engagement with Wellesley College’s unique digital assets.
Shannon Burke has developed the Stowe Center’s public and school programs, managed staff training, and led interpretive planning, connecting history and contemporary relevancy through programs and events that reach diverse audiences since 2005. Burke creates dialogue-based experiences that inspire civic engagement and positive change. She has produced award-winning programs, such as Salons at Stowe and Stowe’s Bicentennial year of programming that included the inaugural Stowe Prize for writing and a Conversation on Race and Social Justice that featured members of the Congressional Black Caucus. Her responsibilities within the education and visitor services department includes management of the Museum Store, Visitor Center, security, and collections. She was Education Director at the Connecticut River Museum, Assistant Director of Education at Orchard House, and has a Certificate of Museum Studies from Tufts and a B.F.A. from the Art Institute of Boston. She volunteers in local schools.
Susan McDaniel Ceccacci is Education Director for Preservation Worcester and a former teacher at the elementary, high school, and college levels. With an M.A. Degree in Historic Preservation Studies from Boston University, she has over 30 years’ experience as an architectural historian and historic preservation consultant, working with cities and towns to produce architectural surveys and National Register nominations. In her role as Education Director, she plans and carries out tours and programs for adults and school groups, and trains and manages Preservation Worcester’s crew of docents. She is also the author of Living at the City’s Green Edge: Bancroft Heights, a Planned Neighborhood in Worcester, Massachusetts, the history of a turn-of-the-20th-century Worcester residential neighborhood, published in 2015.
Elon Cook is a museum activist and race womanist. She is the program manager and curator for the Center for Reconciliation, and its slavery museum project. She is also the humanities consultant at the Robbins House, an African American historic site in Concord, MA. Elon leads workshops on the principles of feminist, anti-racist interpretation pedagogy and developing African American history and slavery programs that center Black humanity. She is also a genealogist, adjunct at the Rhode Island School of Design, Brown University-educated public historian, and National Association for Interpretation-trained workshop developer and instructor.
Mary Babson Fuhrer is a public historian who specializes in using primary sources to recover everyday lives from the past and teaching others to do the same. She serves as advising historian to Freedom’s Way National Heritage area and consults for humanities and historical associations in Massachusetts. She is the author of several articles and the book Crisis of Community: Trials and Transformation of a New England Town, 1815-1848, which was awarded the inaugural “Peter J. Gomes Memorial Book Prize.” She is an elected fellow of the American Antiquarian Society and the Massachusetts Historical Society, and she was honored by Mass Humanities with its 2014 Massachusetts History Commendation for twenty years of contribution to public history.
Kathie Gow has been the volunteer curator of the Hatfield Historical Museum for the past seven years, and the part-time grant-funded collections manager for the past 4-1/2 years. During this time, she’s created a dozen exhibits, attracted media coverage and funding, developed a volunteer crew, and written a dozen funded grants. Kathie also serves on the boards of the Hatfield Historical Society and the Pioneer Valley History Network. She believes that every city and town should have a funded collections manager to preserve local history treasures.
Linda Greene grew up in Somerville, MA. She and her husband met in high school and raised two incredible young men. She’s worked for the Harvard Coop, Duke University, and the University of North Carolina in positions such as textbook buyer and store manager as well W.B. Saunders and J.P. Lippincott book publishers. Once her sons were born, she volunteered in their schools as well as with other religious and historical organizations. 2017 is her fifth season at Captain Jackson’s Historic Chocolate Shop as the Living History Program Manager at the Old North Church in Boston. She is also a major contributor to the Hearth and Home of Mrs. Newark Jackson Chocolate Blog. Linda is an avid re-enactor and enjoys learning all there is about the history of chocolate and the colonial period of Boston.
Gloria Greis has been Executive Director of the Needham Historical Society since June 2002. Prior to working in Needham, she was a Peabody Research Fellow at the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology (Harvard) (2001-2002), and Collections Manager for the Peabody’s Archaeology and Human Osteology Collections (1989-2001). She has worked in museums since 1985. Gloria holds a PhD in Anthropology, specializing in the archaeology of prehistoric Europe. She is the author of two books on archaeology, a book and three films on local history, and several articles on history, archaeology, and various other topics. Gloria is a Needham resident, and is Secretary of the Needham Historical Commission and Co-President of the Needham Great Hall Concert Series. She is also a Research Associate at the Harvard Peabody Museum, a member of the MA State Historical Records Advisory Board, and an elected Fellow of the Massachusetts Historical Society.
Julia Howington, Director of the Moakley Archive and Institute at Suffolk University, has worked in academic libraries and archives for more than fifteen years. At Suffolk, she oversees the university’s archives and special collections unit which include the papers of Congressman Joe Moakley. Her areas of professional interest include primary source instruction, digital exhibits, and information literacy. Howington is active in several professional organizations including Digital Commonwealth, the Association of the Centers for the Study of Congress, and New England Archivists. Before joining Suffolk, she worked at Harvard University in the Theatre Collection and Widener Library. Howington holds a MS in Library Science from Simmons College and a BS from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
Nancy Kelleher is associate director of public affairs at Suffolk University in Boston, where she writes stories for the university website, press releases, and internal messages. She also serves as managing editor of news and directs a staff of writers. As director of Suffolk University’s Adams Gallery, she secured traveling exhibits and curated original shows based on faculty research and New England history. Kelleher honed her storytelling skills as a journalist for daily newspapers. She worked as a reporter/photographer for the Haverhill Gazette, a regional editor at the Lowell Sun and a copy desk chief at the Boston Herald. Kelleher also founded and ran a small communications business. She holds a BA in Art History from the University of Massachusetts Boston.
Tracie Konopinski hired as MASSCreative’s first Organizer in May 2013, works with MASSCreative’s Leadership Council to unify the creative sector and build a grassroots movement for arts, culture, and creativity in Massachusetts. With this network of arts leaders and supporters, Tracie advocates for increasing public investment in the creative sector, to ensure all youth have access to quality arts education programs, and to make sure both our elected officials and the public are talking about how arts and culture help to build vibrant, healthy, and equitable communities across Massachusetts. Prior to joining the MASSCreative team, Tracie worked for six years on voter registration, affordable higher education, and environmental campaigns in western Massachusetts and Maine. As a community organizer, Tracie facilitated trainings on organizing and leadership development with hundreds of activists. Tracie graduated from Muhlenberg College in 2005, where she studied business, communication, and dance.
Allison Lange is an assistant professor of history at the Wentworth Institute of Technology in Boston. She received her PhD in American history from Brandeis University. Her work has been supported by institutions including the National Endowment for the Humanities, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Library of Congress, and American Antiquarian Society. Lange has presented her work at conferences such as the American Historical Association, Organization of American Historians, and Berkshire Conference of Women Historians. Her work has appeared in Imprint and The Atlantic. She also works with the National Women’s History Museum and the Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library. Lange is currently completing a manuscript on the visual culture of the woman’s rights and woman suffrage movements in the United States.
Michelle LeBlanc has over 15 years of experience in museum and classroom settings, teaching history and designing programming for varied audiences. Since 2013, she has been Director of Education for the Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library where she runs all aspects of teacher training, school programming and curriculum development around teaching with historic maps. She has served as Project Director for two Teaching American History grants, a federal program that provided professional development for teachers. She holds an MA in American History and Public History from Northeastern University and is a licensed teacher for grades 5-8 social studies in Massachusetts.
Veronica Martzahl is the Digital Records Archivist at the Massachusetts Archives where she oversees the Archival Collections Management System (ACMS) and Digital Preservation Repository, as well as the arrangement and description of all digital content held by the Archives. She is a member of the Society of American Archivists, New England Archivists, and the Academy of Certified Archivists. Additionally, she is active in the Council of State Archivists and is co-chair of their State Electronic Records Initiative (SERI). She is the Deputy Coordinator of the Massachusetts State Historical Records Advisory Board and is active in COSTEP MA, working to bring cultural heritage and emergency management professionals together before a disaster.
Cliff McCarthy is the President of the Pioneer Valley History Network, a not-for-profit consortium of historical institutions and individuals in Hampden, Hampshire, and Franklin Counties. He is also the Archivist at the Lyman & Merrie Wood Museum of Springfield History and at the Stone House Museum in Belchertown. Cliff is the author or co-author of several books on the history of Belchertown and he writes occasionally for his local newspaper. He comes to his passion for history after a brief career in the field of Conflict Analysis and Resolution.
Erin McGough has been the Executive Director of the Duxbury Rural & Historical Society since 2014, and was the DRHS’s Interim Director and Collections Manager between 2011-2013. Prior positions include that of Registrar at the New Bedford Whaling Museum and 7 years as the Registrar & Collections Manager at the Concord Museum. Ms. McGough holds a dual MA in Art History & Museum Studies from Tufts University and a BA in Art History from the College of William and Mary. She obtained early training in the Conservation Lab at the Peabody Museum, Harvard University, and in the Registrar’s Offices of the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., the Muscarelle Museum of Art in Williamsburg, VA, and the Smithsonian’s American Art Museum. She currently serves as Co-Chair of the Back Roads of the South Shore, a collaboration of historic sites in southeastern Massachusetts, and she is a Museum Assessment Program (MAP) Surveyor for the American Alliance of Museums, in Organization and Collections Management.
Jim Moran is Vice President for Programs and Outreach at the American Antiquarian Society. Jim has over thirty years’ experience creating award-winning cultural and educational programming. He is also a writer, director, and producer who has created fourteen plays, twelve of which have been produced; most of these have been commissioned and are based on historical themes. Additionally, he has created a wide variety of video, audio, and theatrical presentations for corporations, cultural institutions, and individuals. Including an innovative radio program entitled The History Show, which appeared on 151 public radio stations in 47 states.
Susan Navarre has been the Executive Director of the Fitchburg Historical Society since June 2013. She studied Art History at the graduate level at Boston University, after receiving a BA in Art History from Bryn Mawr College. She served as the Executive Director of the Brookline Arts Center for nine years; previously, she taught Art History at the New Hampshire Institute of Art, served as the Assistant to the President at Forest Hills Cemetery, and was a gallery lecturer at the Museum of Fine Arts Boston. She has curated art exhibitions in community gallery spaces, including the first gallery exhibitions in the Green Street MBTA station in Boston. She is currently active as a board member of Fitchburg Rotary, Fitchburg Cultural Alliance, Fitchburg North of Main Advisory Committee, Holiday Lights Decorating Committee, and two book clubs.
Ana Nuncio is Manager of Settlement Partnerships at The House of the Seven Gables, where she directs activities and projects among partnering community organizations to provide educational programming and services to the immigrant community and at-risk youth in Salem. Before joining The Gables, Nuncio served as an executive editor in the School Division of Houghton Mifflin Company in Boston. Along with her work to support the immigrant community of Salem, Nuncio has served as President of the Latino Leadership Coalition in Salem, as member of the Salem Award Foundation, and member of IBBY, the International Board of Books for Young People.
Edward T. O’Donnell is an Associate Professor of History at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester. He is the author of four books, including Henry George and the Crisis of Inequality: Progress and Poverty in the Gilded Age (Columbia University Press, 2015) and (co-author) Visions of America: A History of the United States (Pearson, 3rd ed., 2016). His scholarly articles have appeared in the Public Historian, Journal of Urban History, and the Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era. O’Donnell also hosts a podcast, In The Past Lane, that explores topics in US history; more information at www.InThePastlane.com and iTunes. He writes history-themed opinion pieces for outlets such as the Huffington Post, Newsweek, and the New York Times. O’Donnell also has created two video courses for the Great Courses Company titled, “Turning Points in American History” and “America in the Gilded Age and Progressive Era.”
Mariana Oller is the Associate Curator of Special Collections at Wellesley College. She is responsible for reference, course-integrated instruction to visiting classes, cataloging, collections management and preservation, including building and curating digital collections. Prior to her current position, Mariana worked as Curatorial Assistant in the Rare Books Department at the Houghton Library, Harvard University. Mariana holds a BA degree in History from Rhode Island College, an MA degree in History from Harvard University, and an MS degree in Library and Information Science from Simmons. She is devoted to the study of American history, most particularly the Revolutionary War Era, the early Republic, and the life and legacy of Alexander Hamilton. Mariana is a founding member and Chair of the Alexander Hamilton Awareness Society and its New England Chapter President. She is also a member of the American Antiquarian Society, the Society of Printers, and the Bibliographical Society of America.
Laura Orleans holds an MA in folklore from UNC-Chapel Hill and a BA in English from Oberlin College. Her work has focused on documenting and presenting community history and traditional culture through programming which gives voice to those who are often unheard and helps communities find common ground. She has been working with New Bedford’s maritime community for nearly 20 years. In the late 1990s she was the Principal Investigator for two National Park Service ethnography projects, Faces of Whaling and Places of Whaling, and produced “The Last of the Whaling Outfitters” a 30-minute documentary film. To bring attention to the contemporary fishing industry, Orleans created the Working Waterfront Festival which has taken place on the New Bedford waterfront since 2004. Under Ms. Orleans’ direction, the Festival conducted over 100 oral history interviews with members of the fishing community. These interviews provided the foundation for a book, radio series, curriculum materials, and exhibits. Over time, the festival evolved to present a variety of year-round programs including school programs, a summer camp, and a documentary film series. In 2014, Orleans became the founding Executive Director of the New Bedford Fishing Heritage Center which opened to the public June 25, 2016. The Center is dedicated to telling the story of the fishing industry past, present, and future through exhibits, programs, and archives. Currently Orleans is heading up a team of ethnographers as the recipient of an Archie Green Fellowship from the Library of Congress to document workers in the shore-side trades of the New Bedford/Fairhaven fishing industry. The resulting interviews and photographs will become part of the Library’s permanent collection. In addition, the Center recently launched a major initiative to research the history of organized labor on the New Bedford waterfront.
Penny Outlaw is co-President of the Royall House & Slave Quarters, a National Historic Landmark and house museum located in Medford, MA. The Slave Quarters is the only remaining such structure in the northern United States, and the Royall House is among the finest colonial-era buildings in New England. Until recently Penny was also Chairman of the Board of the Robert F. Kennedy Children’s Action Corps, a leader in child welfare and juvenile justice services in Massachusetts and at the national level. Penny’s professional background is in Human Resources where she focuses on employee engagement and diversity and inclusion. She is currently working on a book about information she uncovered researching her family’s history and the impact it had on her.
Tom Scheinfeldt is Associate Professor of Digital Media and Design and Director of Digital Humanities in the Digital Media Center. Dr. Scheinfeldt received his undergraduate degree (AB in History and Science cum laude) from Harvard and his graduate degrees (MSc in History of Science and DPhil in Modern History) from Oxford. Formerly Managing Director of the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media at George Mason University, Scheinfeldt brings more than a decade of leadership in digital humanities research and management to UCONN. Scheinfeldt’s award-winning, grant-funded research projects include groundbreaking experiments in digital archives such as the September 11 Digital Archive; scholarly open source software projects such as Omeka; generative web events such as One Week | One Tool; and boundary-testing efforts in scholarly communication such as THATCamp and ConnecticutHistory.org. Among his recent publications, Scheinfeldt is co-editor (with Dan Cohen) of Hacking the Academy: New Approaches to Scholarship and Teaching from Digital Humanities (University of Michigan Press, 2013) and a contributor to Debates in the Digital Humanities (University of Minnesota Press, 2012). He blogs at Found History and co-hosts the Digital Campus podcast. You can follow Tom on Twitter @foundhistory.
Surella Seelig is the outreach archivist at Brandeis University’s Archives & Special Collections. With a background in history, she has written on the creation of the Louvre Museum during the French Revolution and the topic of her on-hold dissertation is the art and architecture of the French protectorate in Morocco (1912-1956). While doing her history graduate work, Seelig fell in love with the archives and went on to get her Library degree with a concentration in Archives Management. She finds that her passion for history fits neatly into her work as an archivist and she relishes the amount of historical research and preservation she gets to do in the archives. Her recent work at Brandeis has focused on the creation of numerous physical and digital exhibits showcasing the university’s archival and special collections. Seelig also works regularly on special projects based on these collections, including recent academic symposia on the Wellesley-Brandeis Civil War Letters Project, the Lenny Bruce papers, and the Lilith Magazine collection.
Nichole Shea is the Statewide Metadata Coordinator at the Boston Public Library. Her work is part of the library’s Statewide Digitization program, which provides digitization services and repository space for cultural heritage institutions in the state of Massachusetts. In her position, Nichole works with institutions in the Statewide Digitization program to gather and prepare data for the Digital Commonwealth repository. She is also the lead member of the program’s Metadata Mob, which provides metadata assistance for partner institutions as needed.
Nat Sheidley is the Executive Director of the Bostonian Society, which operates the Old State House Museum on Boston’s Freedom Trail. He is a graduate of Stanford University and holds a Ph.D. in American History from Princeton University. From 1999 to 2009, Nat was a member of the faculty at Wellesley College, where he taught courses in early American history, Native American history, and the history of gender and masculinity. He served as the Bostonian Society’s historian and Director of Public History from 2011 to 2017 and oversaw the Society’s ongoing effort to reinterpret the Old State House. In addition to curating several major exhibitions, he developed a wide range of programs designed to engage and inform both local and out-of-town visitors. Most recently Nat is the creator, with playwright Patrick Gabridge, of Blood on the Snow, an immersive, site-specific work of theater that dramatizes the pivotal aftermath of the Boston Massacre in the very room where the events took place.
Lynn Smith – An African proverb says “It you think you’re too small to make a difference, spend one night in a room with a mosquito.” Lynn joins with other mosquitos in Brockton to affect change through Disney’s philosophy of “imagineering” – turning ideas into form. Lynn helped establish several neighborhood associations in Brockton. The Frederick Douglass Neighborhood Association created a community flower garden, dedicated to international civil rights icons, and the installation of public art in the garden connects the history of heroes beloved by our immigrant population such as Amilcar Cabral of Cape Verde, Toussaint Louverture of Haiti, and Daniel O’Connell of Ireland with Douglass. The Keith Park Neighborhood Association rallied around restoration of a neglected park, and convinced a skeptical administration to restore the George E. Keith memorial fountain in that Olmsted-designed park. The Association partnered this year with the Brockton Historical Society to create a one day Pop-Up Village so visitors can experience life in Brockton in 1917 and 2017. Lynn is a graduate of Girls’ Latin School and Emmanuel College.
Elaine Smollin is a Public Humanities Curator in Historic Preservation, Essayist on the Cultural Histories of Archaeology, and Visual Artist, with degrees from Pratt Institute (BFA MFA Visual Art/Art History and Theory) and New York University (Graduate Cinema Studies, Film and Politics Program). Elaine’s most recent programs are “New City Dreams: Youth Imagine the Future of Worcester” a collaboration with Preservation Worcester, (Mass Humanities grant), “Kids in Architecture”, Worcester Art Museum, and “Rhode Island Antiquities: New Trends in Art and Design Education on Public Lands” (RI Council for the Humanities grant). Elaine’s current cultural history project is, “Rhode Island Cultures of Climate, Ecology, and Farming”. Her research examines values associated with estuary and riverine ecologies, together with period philosophical trends on nature, climate and culture. Her annual narrative media program, “Youth Photojournalism and Festival” will be held at the Worcester Art Museum, July 7 – 14, 2017.
Margaret R. Sullivan is Archivist to the Boston Police Department. She has been honored for her research on forgotten line of duty deaths and Boston’s first women, African American, and Jewish officers. She is a Fellow at the Massachusetts Historical Society and a board member at the Massachusetts Law Enforcement Memorial. Margaret is currently working with UMass Boston Archives and a group of volunteer genealogists to document the later lives of the police officers in the 1919 Boston Police Strike before the centennial in September, 2019.
Liz Ševčenko was inspired to develop HAL after launching the Guantanamo Public Memory Project, an international collaboration of universities and organizations, which she coordinated from Columbia University’s Institute for the Study of Human Rights, to build a global conversation about the past, present, and future of the US naval base at Guantanamo Bay. Ševčenko was Founding Director of the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience, a network of historic sites that foster public dialogue on pressing contemporary issues. Starting in 1999 as a meeting of nine sites under the auspices of the Lower East Side Tenement Museum, she grew the Coalition into an independent organization with over 250 members in more than 40 countries. As Coalition Director, Ševčenko worked with diverse communities to design replicable programs and practices that reflect on past struggles and inspire citizens to become involved in addressing their contemporary legacies. Prior to starting the Coalition, Ševčenko served as Vice President for Programs at the Lower East Side Tenement Museum, developing exhibits and educational activities that connect the stories of the neighborhood’s immigrants past and present. She also created national and community initiatives to inspire civic dialogue on cultural identity, labor relations, housing, welfare, immigration, and other issues raised by these stories. She has published extensively on Sites of Conscience in journals and edited volumes in a variety of fields, from human rights to cultural heritage to transitional justice. She received her BA in history from Yale University and her MA in history from New York University.
Evan Thornberry is the Reference and Geospatial Librarian for the Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library. Evan manages reference and research within the collection, has a leading role with the Center’s digital projects, and is responsible for initiating the use of GIS at LMC five years ago. He is the Project Director for a major grant-funded project to renovate LMC’s digital collections, including several geospatial enhancements, and manages additional undertakings that promote the use of geospatial technologies in public library programming and reference services. Evan has been with LMC since 2012 after earning his MLIS from the University of Washington (2012), and his BA in Geography/Social Studies from Western Washington University (2006). Previous to his time in Boston, Evan was the Map Library Manager at the Huxley College of the Environment’s Map Library in Bellingham, Washington.
Patrice Todisco is the Executive Director of the Freedom’s Way Heritage Association, where she works in partnership with the National Park Service to oversee the implementation of programs and projects designed to interpret, promote, and preserve the cultural, natural, and historic resources of its 45 communities in Massachusetts and southern New Hampshire. With a background in cultural landscape management, urban planning, and landscape architecture, Patrice has more than twenty years of leadership experience in the public and non-profit sectors managing organizations, projects, and processes within greater Boston that preserve, expand, and enhance the public realm and urban open space. She has empowered local citizens to shape their communities through strategic initiatives including master planning, design and development, community outreach, advocacy, and policy. As a writer, landscape historian, and independent researcher, Patrice explores themes relating to culture, design, and the environment. She has published articles in the Boston Globe, Architecture Magazine, the British garden history journal, Hortus, and The New England Journal of Garden History. Her work has been featured in the Huffington Post, Gardenista and Vogue magazine. She currently writes book reviews for the Massachusetts Horticultural Society, and about parks, gardens, and the public realm in her blog, landscapenotes.com.
Ginny Troutman is an art educator at Somerset Berkley Regional High School. She is a graduate of Rhode Island School of Design’s Master of Arts in Teaching Program, and is currently an instructor of Beginning and Advanced Photography and AP Studio Art. In 2015 she was awarded a Mass Humanities Grant for a community photography installation project she created with her high school photography students titled, Envisioning Somerset: Past and Present.
Kenneth Turino is Manager of Community Engagement and Exhibitions at Historic New England, the oldest, largest, and most comprehensive regional heritage organization in the country. Mr. Turino oversees community engagement projects throughout the six New England states and is responsible for the exhibitions program at Historic New England. Prior to coming to Historic New England, Mr. Turino was Executive Director of the Lynn Museum, an active local history museum in Lynn, Massachusetts. He frequently consults on interpretive planning and community engagement projects at historic sites, most recently with Franklin Vagone on James Madison’s Montpelier. Ken holds a Masters of Arts in Teaching, Museum Education, from the George Washington University and is an adjunct professor in the Tufts University Museum Studies Program. There he teaches courses on exhibitions and the future of historic houses. Mr. Turino is a Trustee of the House of the Seven Gables in Salem, Massachusetts and on the Association for State and Local History’s Council.
Marieke Van Damme has worked in non-profits for over 15 years, starting as an Americorps VISTA in Alaska. Her museum career began in collections for the National Park Service and evolved into historic site management and administration/fundraising. She is currently the Executive Director of the Cambridge Historical Society in Cambridge, MA. Her side projects include Joyful Museums, a project studying workplace culture; Gender Equity in Museums Movement (GEMM); and a study of why museum workers leave the field. She serves as a board member for the New England Museum Association, tweets at @joyfulmuseums, and co-hosts the podcast Museum People.
Lee Wright is the founder of History Camp, the unconference on all things history that takes place in Boston, Holyoke, Des Moines, and Denver, and The History List, which publishes The History List for Massachusetts, the weekly e-mail list of history happenings in Massachusetts that goes to 800 subscribers. Lee serves on the Board of Trustees of the Marlborough Historical Society, and has presented at the annual conferences for NEMA and the AASLH. Prior to moving to New England, he served on the boards of the Evening Associates of the Art Institute of Chicago, the Association for Retarded Citizens of Dallas and of Texas, and the Des Moines Public Library system. In addition to his volunteer efforts, he has held marketing and product management positions in Fortune 500 firms and at new ventures, and currently works with for-profit and non-profit firms focusing on growth through innovation and organizational focus.
Erin Wederbrook Yuskaitis is the Director of Education for the Old North Church & Historic Site where she creates and develops new educational programs for school groups and the general public, including curriculum development, innovative public programming, and creative engagement with local audiences. She also recruits, trains, and manages a team of 15 educators. Prior to accepting her position at Old North in 2013, she spent seven years in nonprofit arts administration, primarily program and exhibition management, for three different arts organizations in Alabama and Massachusetts. She received her BA from the University of Virginia in art history and archaeology and her MA from the University of Alabama in American studies. Erin is completing the Museum Studies Certificate program at Tufts University and recently served as the Young Advisors Board President for the Boston Preservation Alliance. She currently serves on the Planning Committee of the Greater Boston Museum Educators Roundtable.