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TAM 2024 Workshop | Preserving the Past, Ensuring the Future

TAM 2024 Workshop | Preserving the Past, Ensuring the Future

TAM 2024 Workshop Preserving the Past, Ensuring the Future

Tuesday, April 16, 2024
3:15 PM - 5:45 PM (CDT)
Event Sold Out

Event Details

Preserving the Past, Ensuring the Future: Exploring the Relevancy and Sustainability of Historic Sites and Houses

Tuesday, April 16, 2024
3:15 PM - 5:45 PM

Workshop Description:

How are historic sites and houses maintaining or growing their relevancy and sustainability? Using Gary Smith’s Summerlee Report as a catalyst, the first portion of this workshop will look at Log Cabin Village, Neill-Cochran House Museum, Dr Pepper Museum, and Historic Waco to see what efforts they are making towards their relevancy and sustainability in their communities and beyond. The second part of this workshop will open the discussion of relevancy and sustainability to attendees. Through case studies and group discussions, attendees will come away with practical takeaways to bring back to their historic sites and houses. 

This workshop is part of the TAM 2024 Annual Conference in Lubbock. All attendees must first be registered for the conference at large here


Gary N. Smith
The Summerlee Foundation

Gary N. Smith is the Summerlee Foundation's President and Texas History Program Director. During his previous career as a museum director, he participated on one of the foundation’s earliest projects, the Summerlee Commission on Texas History in 1989. During the next 20 years, he served as a Texas History consultant for Summerlee projects and served on the Advisory Board for the Summerlee Board of Directors. In 2014, he led The Summerlee Commission on the Financial Sustainability of History Organizations and was appointed Texas History Program Director in 2015. In 2018, he assumed additional duties as President of the foundation.

Smith grew up in Fort Worth, Texas and his professional experience includes positions with the Iowa Division of Historic Preservation, the Historical Society of Delaware, the Missouri Historical Society in St. Louis, and the McFaddin-Ward House Museum in Beaumont, Texas. From 1996 – 2014 he was the president and executive director of Dallas Heritage Village in Dallas, Texas. He has also served as adjunct professor in the museum studies program at Baylor University, where he taught courses on museum administration and historic house museums from 2007-2017. He is active in a number of professional associations, including Philanthropy Southwest as well as the Texas Association of Museums, of which he is a past president.

Rachael A. Nadeau Johnson
Collections Manager
Dr Pepper Museum

Rachael A. Nadeau Johnson is the Collections Manager for the Dr Pepper Museum (DPM). A native Michigander, she holds a Bachelor of Science in Anthropology from Michigan State University and a Master of Arts in Museum Studies from Baylor University. She joined DPM in 2014 and has spent the last few years overseeing the Museum’s collections and collection on repository, along with being involved in exhibit design. In addition to her role at DPM, she is also an adjunct lecturer in the Department of Museum Studies at Baylor University. She currently serves as Co-Chair for TAM’s Museum Emerging Leaders of Texas Affinity Group (MELT) and is on the board of directors of Historic Waco. 

Rowena Dasch
Executive Director
Neill-Cochran House Museum

Rowena Houghton Dasch has led the Neill-Cochran House Museum as Executive Director since the end of 2013. She holds an M.A. and a Ph.D. in American Art from the University of Texas at Austin and an A.B. in Art and Archaeology from Princeton University. Her work at the NCHM encompasses all aspects of the Museum’s operations, the historic property’s preservation, and the creation and management of the Museum’s active schedule of rotating exhibitions. Dr. Dasch’s current work focuses on the site’s 2-story Slave Quarters, including her collaborative publication with Dr. Tara Dudley, Reckoning With the Past: Slavery, Segregation, and Gentrification in Austin (2021).

Shae Nawoj
Assistant Historic Site Supervisor
Log Cabin Village

Shae Nawoj is the Assistant Historic Site Supervisor at Log Cabin Village in Fort Worth. She has worked in the museum world at institutions as varied as Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site, Gettysburg National Military Park, Colonial Williamsburg and the Buffalo Bill Center of the West. Her background includes studies in public history with an emphasis in 19th century American history and memory.  At Log Cabin Village she works as part of a “myth busting” team on a mission to set the record straight about life in 19th-century Texas. 

Erik Swanson

Executive Director
Historic Waco

Erik Swanson is the Executive Director of Historic Waco in Waco, Texas and manages the Earle Harrison House and Pape Gardens.  He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Gettysburg College and a Master’s degree in Museum Studies from Baylor University. Swanson started his museum career interning at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in 2012 and worked at the Baylor University Libraries as their Exhibits Curator and Coordinator from 2015-2022.  Starting in spring 2024, Swanson will teach an Exhibits Design class at Baylor University.  Swanson has held numerous leadership positions, including President of the Museum Association of Waco.