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INSIDE S E MC The Newsletter of the Southeastern Museums Conference

fall 2020 | www.semcdirect.net

ON THE FRONT COVER Letitia Huckaby, East Feliciana Altarpiece, 2010, pigment print on silk, courtesy of artist. From the exhibition Letitia Huckaby: This Same Dusty Road, at the LSU Museum of Art.

21 Executive Director’s Notes Zinnia Willits 7 SEMC President’s Address Heather Marie Wells 11 SEMC Vice President’s Address Matt Davis 13 A Letter from the Membership Department Carla Phillips 17 Thoughts on a 2020 SEMC Internship Edith Courtney 19 SEMC Fall Virtual Program Series: A Quick Pivot for Max Connection  21 SEMC Now Accepting Program Proposals for the 2021 Annual Meeting: How Will You Meet the Moment?  25

ON THE BACK COVER Chattanooga Marriott and Convention Center

31 SEMC 2020 Virtual Business Meeting, Awards, and Keynote Address A Video Presentation 26 Winners of the 2020 SEMC Museum Professional Awards and Competition Awards  29 What Will Be Brought into the “New Normal”? Katy Menne 45 A Special Thanks: Endowment and Membership Contributions  51

 Exhibitions 74 Innovations 82  People and Places 84 Important Dates 86 SEMC Job Forum 86 Get Social 86 Membership Form Acquisitions  72


semc Alabama Arkansas Florida Georgia Kentucky Louisiana Mississippi

North Carolina South Carolina Tennessee Virginia West Virginia U.S. Virgin Islands Puerto Rico

staff Zinnia Willits  Executive Director Carla Phillips  Manager of Communications  and Member Services

semc officers Heather Marie Wells President heathermarie.wells@crystalbridges.org Digital Media Project Manager, Crystal Bridges  Museum of American Art, Bentonville, AR

Matthew S. Davis Vice President matt.davis@gcsu.edu Director of Historic Museums,  Georgia College, Milledgeville, GA

contact semc SEMC | P.O. Box 550746 Atlanta, GA 30355-3246 T: 404.814.2048 or 404.814.2047 F: 404.814.2031 W: www.SEMCdirect.net E: membershipservices@SEMCdirect.net

Deitrah J. Taylor Secretary dtaylorhistorian@gmail.com Public Historian,  Milledgeville, GA

Robin Reed Treasurer

Inside SEMC is published three times a year by SEMC. Annual subscription is included in membership dues. Design: Nathan Moehlmann, Goosepen Studio & Press

rereed10@gmail.com Museum Administrator (retired),  Fort Monroe, VA

Darcie MacMahon Past President  dmacmahon@flmnh.ufl.edu Director of Exhibits & Public Programs, Florida  Museum of Natural History, Gainesville, FL

The deadline for the Winter/Spring 2021 newsletter is March 26, 2021. To submit information for the newsletter, please contact the Council Director in your state or memberservices@ semcdirect.net.

semc directors Scott Alvey 

Calinda Lee 



Director, Kentucky Historical Society,

Head of Programs and Exhibitions,

 Frankfurt, KY

 National Center for Civil and Human Rights,  Atlanta, GA

Glenna Barlow 

Deborah Mack 



Curator of Education,

Assoc. Dir. Office of Strategic Partnerships

 Columbia Museum of Art, Columbia, SC

 Smithsonian’s National Museum of African  American History and Culture, Wash., D.C.

Alexander Benitez

Rosalind Martin



Director, Moundville Archaeological Park,

Director of Education, Knoxville Museum

 The University of Alabama,

 of Art, Knoxville, TN

 Moundville, AL Nancy Fields

Michael Scott 



Director and Curator, The Museum of

Director of Historic Resources, Jekyll Island

 the Southeast American Indian,

 Authority, Mosaic/Jekyll Island Museum,

 Pembroke, NC

 Jekyll Island, GA

Pody Gay

Brenda Tindal



Director, Discovery Network

Director of Education and Engagement

 Museum of Discovery, Little Rock, AR

 International African American Museum,  Charleston, SC

Elise LeCompte

Lance Wheeler



Registrar & Asst. Dept. Chair,

Education & Public Relations Manager

 Florida Museum of Natural History,

 for the Margaret Walker Center and COFO

 Gainesville, FL

 Education Center, Jackson State University  Jackson, MS


semc executive director’s notes

It has been six months since I assumed the role of SEMC Executive Director. While so much of what I anticipated the job to be has been in flux due to COVID, I continue to see the positives and silver linings in this unusual year and intense time for all of us. This fall has been about endings and beginnings for SEMC, and although I have often felt the two crashing into each other, it has all been part of an incredible year of transition which we experienced together as a museum community. These past months we gathered time and again, for virtual programming, for happy hours and for our Annual Business Meeting, an event that is part of SEMC’s By SEMC members from North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia at Museum Advocacy Day 2020. Register for MAD 2021 (which will be virtual) today! www.aam-us.org/programs/ museums-advocacy-day/register-for-museums-advocacy-day/

Laws, its history, our organizational culture. At the Annual Conference, this meeting typically ends our three days together. It is a literal culmination to the annual gathering as well as a symbolic ending as SEMC turns its attention to the year ahead. Although we gathered virtually this year, the Business Meeting still served its purpose as an ending to 2020, a year that continues to hurl uncertainty at us from all directions. We made it through some difficult months and now, we look forward and move together as an organization from what was to what’s next and new beginnings. I hope you enjoy this edition of Inside SEMC which celebrates our members and member museums highlighting creative design, technological savvy and curatorial inclusiveness achieved across our region. The 2020 SEMC Competition and Award winners are an inspiration and terrific examples of the amazing accomplishments that can come during times of great challenge. We are so proud of the success each achieved. 7

Looking ahead to 2021, we will need this sense of pride... of community...of togetherness, to continue into the unknown. To that end, we are pleased to open the call for proposals for SEMC2021 and hope you will consider submitting a session to continue this journey with SEMC and “meet the moment.”

in the power of peer-to-peer connection to enhance careers, open minds and make museums stronger, more inclusive agents of change. I am so proud of our SEMC community and its collective resilience. While we have some challenges ahead, there is also lots to look forward to. Stick with us. Help us get there. Together.

While I cannot predict what further adjustments, endings and beginning COVID may necessitate for SEMC this next year, I can promise that I will do my level best to lead this organization through the changes, which will take time, and may involve trial and error along the way. However, I will find a way to succeed because I genuinely love SEMC and believe wholeheartedly

Respectfully, — Zinnia Willits, SEMC Executive Director

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semc president’s address

I’ve been thinking a lot about gratitude. In a year that has been, let’s face it, epically crappy, I actually have so many things to be grateful for and I’ve been struggling with how best to show the gratitude I feel in my heart. I’ve finally decided that a thank you doesn’t have to be a grand gesture and sometimes simplicity is the best way to demonstrate what is in the heart. So thank you. Thank you, Susan Perry, for your years of service to the field and SEMC. Thank you, SEMC board, for your time and commitment to running this great association. Thank you to the Louisville arrangements committee; we will see you soon! Thank you for the program committee and the virtual program task force for all your hard work. Thank you to all our sponsors for the virtual program. Thank you to all the presenters, shepherds, and attendees for such an AMAZING virtual program. Thank you to everyone who had a hand in launching the Leadership Institute! It was a remarkable beginning to a new program for SEMC and I can’t wait to see it grow over the coming years. Thank you, Zinnia, for a mind-blowing first six months of being on the job – I can only imagine what SEMC is going to be able to achieve over the coming years. And last, but certainly not least, thank you to all our members for staying with us this year. I don’t know what the coming year holds for us, but I do know that SEMC will find a way to continue to provide you all with the level of excellent programs and services you have come to expect. And for that I am most grateful. — Heather Marie Wells, SEMC President



semc vice president’s address Greetings, SEMC Members! I hope this message finds you all well and safe! 2020 continues to be an unprecedented year on so many levels, as we all live with daily and rapid forces of change, pivoting, reimaging, and realignment.   As we continue to evaluate all the seismic changes this year has wrought, I have been impressed by our ability to reimagine our programming, engage each other with virtual meetups, and see the success of SEMC’s first Virtual Professional Development Series.   Attended by over 600 professionals from across the United States, this series featured tracks on administration, DEAI, curatorial practices, career development, and education.   Special thanks goes out to our sponsors, all members of the 2020 Program Committee and their cochairs Michelle Schulte and Beth Hoover-DeBerry, the 2020 Virtual Programming Taskforce, our presenters, and SEMC’s leadership and staff. Looking forward,  we are developing plans to move forward with SEMC2021 in Chattanooga, Tennessee.   Numerous in person and virtual options will be a part of this planning process and more information will be forthcoming.  If you are interested in presenting or participating on the 2021 programming committee, please check the 2021 Program section in this publication! Thank you all for the important work that you do, and I hope you continue to remain safe and well. Sincerely, — Matt Davis, SEMC Vice President





a letter from the membership department Hello SEMC Members! I hope you have all had the opportunity to “meet” me through various channels of communication that have gone out in the past few months, but just in case you haven’t, I’m Carla Phillips, your Membership Services and Communications Manager for SEMC. I have been in this position since June 2020 and am thoroughly enjoying my new(ish) position. I am your go-to staff member for questions about your membership, at whatever level or category you identify with. I can assist you with pretty much any issue you have, and if I don’t know the answer right at that time, I will expeditiously get back to you with an answer. In addition to handling membership information and troubleshooting issues, I am also working on our social media presence, helping to ensure we are visible on the social media platforms we currently use (Instagram, Facebook and Twitter). Our goal is to engage with our followers and support our SEMC members. Did I mention we love photographs? We love photographs! Send us funny pictures, pictures of your beautiful grounds, pictures of your amazing exhibitions, and pictures of your incredible staff doing what they do best, we want it all so we can share it with the world (yes, we have members and supporters in all parts of the country and the world!). So let us know what’s going on in your neck of the woods so we can take it global. Chattanooga Aquarium

You will, from time to time, hear from me when it’s time for our Inside SEMC publications, as we are ALWAYS looking for folks to write articles, share good news and promote what’s happening at your institution or business. If you have news you’d like us to feature, don’t hesitate to send your articles to me (and/or Zinnia) with the details so we can be sure to include you in upcoming issues. I want to close by encouraging each of you to follow us on social media. We hope you already do, but if not, please consider adding us to your IG, FB and Twitter feeds. Here is where you can find us: Instagram @semcdirect Facebook @southeasternmuseums Twitter @SEMC2 Please feel free to contact me with feedback and ideas you may have for the SEMC membership program, I want to hear from you! One more thing, we have some fun birthday ideas in store starting in 2021, so please shoot me an email with your birthday (month and day only) so you won’t miss out on the fun! Have a wonderful holiday season, — Carla Phillips, SEMC Membership/ Communications Manager cphillilps@semcdirect.net 17


Thoughts on a 2020 SEMC Internship The world of museums is so broad and ever changing. During my time interning with the Southeastern Museums Conference my understanding of museums as institutions has grown immensely. I’ve had the opportunity to attend virtual sessions and hear from museum professionals on all aspects. I am so grateful for this opportunity because it has allowed me to develop a larger appreciation for museum spaces as well as the individuals that contribute to every branch of the institutions. I think that being able to witness progressive leadership in such a pivotal time has really highlighted the importance of good leadership. Those entering the field at a time like now have witnessed first-hand the complexities of adapting to this new normal, under what seems like a lot of pressure. My ideas and opinions towards museums shifted in ways that I didn’t know possible. Prior to my involvement with SEMC I was doing administrative and assistant work with the staff at the Spelman College Museum of Fine Art. Even though I was working in a museum, I still had very little knowledge or understanding of how decisions about events, exhibitions and engagement within that institution were made. I was curious about what made these events and exhibitions successful, and that is what drove me to want to be involved with SEMC. While working with SEMC I’ve had the privilege of being in close conversation with Zinnia and Carla who

are phenomenal and amazing leaders and mentors. I have had the opportunity to see the behind-the-scenes of sessions and truly learn first-hand what it takes to run and coordinate events within a large organization. I’ve heard about the trials and tribulations, and the complexities that come along with leadership in this field, and what sort of rationale goes into making the hard decisions that essentially determine the public view of your institution. There is so much hard work that goes into making sure that museums are able to do their jobs; working with SEMC has emphasized that for me. This internship has taught me to be more compassionate when casting opinions on people that are in charge of so much more than outsiders may think or see. Given the history of museums, I feel it is important to shed light on the progressive direction they are headed in. During one of the virtual sessions Matthew Davis who is the Vice President of SEMC and Director of Historic Museums Georgia College stated how important it is to “celebrate the small wins,” and especially in efforts towards larger goals. SEMC has been at the forefront of hosting and encouraging these conversations around making the museum a space for everyone so it is thrilling to be a part of that. I think that my leadership roles will look so much different now than they did before.

— Edith Courtney 19


SEMC FALL VIRTUAL PROGRAM SERIES A QUICK PIVOT FOR MAX CONNECTION! Last summer SEMC made the difficult decision to postpone in-person gatherings for the remainder of 2020 due to the many uncertainties swirling around the COVID-19 pandemic. This included our beloved Annual Meeting in Louisville, Kentucky, which has (thankfully) been rescheduled for 2023. Although we could not gather in person, the need to be together, to learn from one another, to lean on our colleagues and find inspiration and connection during difficult times, was more prevalent than ever. SEMC staff and leadership were determined to provide our membership with the consistent, quality professional development opportunities they have come to expect. 21

In order to meet this moment, we made a quick decision to pivot the in-person conference to a series of virtual professional development opportunities spread over the fall months; instead of a three day conference, we decided on ten days of programming! Many of the sessions in this series were selected from the 2020 Annual Meeting Program and we are so thankful to all the speakers who adapted their presentations for a virtual platform. In addition, we added several new sessions to address current events and the many changes museums have faced during a global pandemic and months of social and political unrest. SEMC is thankful to every individual who contributed their time and input to developing the program series which was organized at lighting speed. To all those who presented sessions, you have our deepest respect for sharing your wisdom and experience with your colleagues. It is not easy to develop a virtual session and we are so grateful for your efforts! Finally, a huge thanks to all who registered, attended sessions, and took advantage of these opportunities to share lessons learned, emerging best practices, and think-tank solutions for the challenges ahead. Staying connected and engaged during pandemic, isolation and rapid change has been so important. We were pleased to provide a virtual platform to bring southeast museum professionals together and continue the peer-to-peer learning and camaraderie that has become a hallmark of SEMC. Enjoy this “virtual dashboardâ€? recap of a successful fall program series! • 30 professional sessions offered over two months in addition to SEMC affinity group meetups and social hours. Sessions were divided into tracks including Education, Diversity/Equity, Accessibility/Inclusion,


• • •

• • •

• •

• •

Career Management, Leadership/Operations and Collections/Curatorial/Exhibitions Over 35 hours of professional development 100 + speakers representing all types and sizes of museums, facets of the field and career levels All sessions offered live-closed captioning; written transcripts are available upon request; one session offered live American Sign Language interpretation All sessions were recorded and shared with all who registered. 30 members of the 2020 Program Committee served as “shepherds” for each session. 25 sessions came from the existing 2020 Program; speakers did an amazing job adjusting topics and moving to a virtual format 5 new sessions were organized that directly addressed current realities 17 SEMC Corporate Friend members took advantage of the opportunity to highlight their business as individual session sponsors. 19 Virtual Program Scholarships were awarded to those who needed assistance. 150 students registered for the Series (student registration was FREE)

• Over 650 registered for the Fall Virtual Program Series representing 27 states, the District of Columbia, Israel, and Scotland! While virtual programming provides accessible professional development and reduces attendee expenses related to travel, it is not without cost, and the support of several generous sponsors was crucial to the success and smooth execution of our virtual offerings. SEMC is grateful for the support of the Virtual Program Series Sponsors! • Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation • National Museum of African American History and Culture Office of Strategic Partnerships • Monadnock Media • Solid Light • TimeLooper We would also like to acknowledge the technical support of Hutchinson Design Group and Virtual Series design from Banks Creative.



SEMC Now Accepting Program Proposals for the 2021 Annual Meeting How will You Meet the Moment? We know the world will never stop throwing new challenges our way—at SEMC we’ll always be ready to meet the moment and find new ways to assist our southeast museum community to explore its capacity as a profession, dig deep and find opportunities in life’s big challenges. This remarkable moment in time calls on all of us to bring our very best. We are quite literally writing history through countless acts and decisions we make every day. It is essential for museums to continue to find ways to adapt to our current realities and think ahead to building a fundamentally different future. As 2020 has taught us, change can come quickly and powerfully. SEMC will be here to help you both meet the moment and begin to think about how to build a different future. The Southeastern Museums Conference will present its 2021 Annual Meeting in Chattanooga, Tennessee October 25–27, 2021. During this time of constant change, we are planning

for SEMC2021 to be a hybrid meeting with virtual components as well as onsite sessions and events at the Chattanooga Convention Center. While we are hopeful about the in-person component of the annual meeting, the safety of our SEMC members will remain a top priority. If circumstances dictate, we will be ready to transition to a fully virtual format. For now, we are pleased to announce that SEMC is accepting session proposals for the 2021 Annual Meeting. Follow this link for the 2021 SEMC Session Proposal Form. As you develop proposals for SEMC2021, consider how your topic meets this unique moment for museums and/ or focuses on building the future. You may find inspiration from this list of subjects that SEMC members indicated they would like to see discussed further in 2021. Session proposals will be accepted through January 31, 2021. 25



click the above image for the 2020 virtual business meeting and keynote address






The Southeastern Museums Conference (SEMC) is proud to announce the winners of the 2020 James R. Short Award, Outstanding Service Award, Museum Leadership Award and Emerging Museum Professional Award. Winners were chosen from a wide range of entries across the Southeastern United States. The SEMC Awards Committee, co-chaired by Catherine Pears, Rosalind Martin, and Robin Reed, honors outstanding colleagues who have helped shape the world of museums.

James R. Short Award Marilyn Laufer, Director Emerita of the Jule Colins Smith Museum of Fine Art at Auburn University

Established by SEMC in 1981, the James R. Short Award recognizes individuals who have given a lifetime (20+ years) of service to the museum profession, with a significant portion of that service at a museum within the SEMC region. It is the most prestigious recognition of service to the museum profession in the southeast. Marilyn Laufer, Director Emerita of the Jule Colins Smith Museum of Fine Art at Auburn University is the 2020 recipient of the James R. Short Award. Dr. Laufer began her career as a museum educator working at various museums in the Midwest until she decided to return to academia at Washington University in Saint Louis, where she received her doctorate in art history. In 1990, she joined the art history faculty at Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia, where she also co-directed the Birke Art Gallery. Dr. Laufer joined the Department of Art faculty at Auburn University as an instructor in 1996 and divided her time between teaching and working as a guest curator for institutions including the High Museum of Art, Morris Museum of Art, Columbus Museum, and the Georgia Museum of Art. As a guest curator, Dr. Laufer planned exhibitions throughout the country including, Recent Graphics from

American Printshops, Mitchell Museum, Mount Vernon, Illinois; Herb Fink: Drawings and Watercolors, 1978-1987, Illinois Arts Gallery; Bart Parker Photographs, Center of Contemporary Art, Saint Louis, Missouri; Modernism in the South, Morris Museum of Art, Augusta, Georgia and Myths and Metaphors: The Art of Leo Twiggs for the Georgia Museum of Art, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, among many others. In 2006 she was asked to serve as the Interim Co-Director of the Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art at Auburn University and was named Director the following year. In 2018 Dr. Laufer was named Director Emerita upon her retirement, having served Auburn University for 22 years. Since retirement, she has curated two exhibitions. The first co-curated with Cindy Buckner for the Asheville Art Museum entitled A Telling Instinct: John James Audubon and Contemporary Art and the most recent for the Georgia Museum of Art, Carl Holty: Romantic Modernist. Dr. Laufer has contributed to numerous art-related publications, written scripts for documentary art films, served on countless arts panels and lectured widely. She currently lives in Asheville, North Carolina with her husband Tom Butler, also a retired museum director, and their two opera-loving dachshunds, Isolde, and Siegfried. Excerpts from Dr. Laufer’s nomination letters: The Southeastern museum community has been immeasurably enriched by Dr. Laufer’s presence in our region, and I can think of no one more deserving of the James R. Short Award. She will continue to contribute to the expansion and the practical application of high standards and best practices in museums, since we will continue to seek her services, as I have done, as recently as the day on which this support is being written, and benefit from her counsel and example. Marilyn Laufer will distinguish the Short Award. I support her nomination with enthusiasm. She is a credit to the profession and deserves this recognition.

Marilyn Laufer 31

Alabama Humanities Foundation, chairing the 2008 Face the Future Humanities Leadership Summit: Humanities & Technology in the 21st Century, a statewide conference for cultural organizations in Birmingham, Alabama, receiving the Schwartz Prize for the Alabama Humanities Foundation Grant Project, Alabama Prison Arts and Education Project: Pilot Course in Survey of Southern Literature, and serving as the  Program Director and Regional Director for the Southeast on the American Association for Museum Volunteers Board.

Outstanding Service to the Museum Profession Award Susan Perry, Executive Director, Southeastern Museums Conference, 2011–2020

Initiated in 1999, this award recognizes a leader with 10 or more years of service to an allied or affiliated professional organization. Such a leader will have assisted the museum profession in areas such as program organization and long-term cultural development. Susan Perry, former Executive Director of the Southeastern Museums Conference (SEMC), is the 2020 recipient of the Outstanding Service to the Museum Profession Award. Susan served as Executive Director of SEMC from 2011 to 2020, patiently and diligently rebuilding the organization by cultivating relationships with museum professionals from institutions large and small, and gently but firmly pushing a strategic vision of growth focused on service and benefits to constituent members. Prior to her successful tenure with SEMC, Susan was a grants director for the Alabama Humanities Foundation and the Adult Programs Coordinator for the Mint Museum of Art in Charlotte, North Carolina. She holds a B.A. in Art and English from Agnes Scott College, an M.A. in English from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and an M.F.A in Drawing and Painting from California State University. In addition to her work with SEMC, Susan’s many professional activities and achievements include receiving the Distinguished Service Award on behalf of the

Susan has had long-standing professional membership and active participation with the American Alliance of Museums, AAM’s Council of Regional Associations, numerous state museum associations, Phi Beta Kappa, and has been a Board member of the Southern Literary Trail Advisory Board, President of the Friends of Art Board at Queens College, a board Member of the Academic Internship Program Advisory Board and a board member on the Latin American Council of Charlotte. Recently retired from SEMC, Susan continues to be active in the arts and is currently serving on the board of the Rensing Center, an artist-in-residence program providing living and work space to selfdirected applicants looking for an isolated rural, creative landscape in Pickens, South Carolina, as well as enjoying time with her family. Excerpts from Susan Perry’s nomination letters: Susan brought many skills to her position, perhaps the most powerful being her people skills, along with a true love of museums. Her extra personal touch made her a beloved executive director and created a spirit of belonging, fairness, excitement, and empowerment. She leaves SEMC in a very strong position with an engaged board and membership, a healthy endowment built through personal cultivation, and a commitment to initiatives forged through thoughtful strategic planning. Susan was particularly passionate about promoting diversity and inclusion in the field, and worked tremendously hard to provide the resources Southeastern museums need to move the needle in this area 32

Brenda Tindal, Director of Education and Engagement at the International African American Museum (IAAM) in Charleston, South Carolina, is the recipient of the 2020 Museum Leadership Award. Brenda is an awarding-winning educator, scholar, and museum practitioner. Prior to joining the IAAM, Brenda was the Director of Education at the Detroit Historical Society, where she oversaw the K-16 education initiatives and public programming and provided organizational leadership in the areas of museum visitor experience and strategic engagement.

Brenda became the Levine’s first woman and African American, to serve as Staff Historian and Senior VicePresident of Research and Collections. In that capacity, she served as the lead curator and content developer on many exhibitions including K(NO)W Justice K(NO) W Peace—considered one of the first rapid-response exhibits to place local and national community-law enforcement relations into historical and socio-cultural context. As part of the K(NO)W Justice K(NO)W Peace project, she designed, lead, and/or implemented successful public programs and community initiatives, including the Breaking Bread Dinner & Dialogue series; the #KNOWCharlotte civic and corporate enrichment seminars; Listen UP! Charlotte mobile concert series and was a consultant on The Atlantic magazine’s 2017 Race + Justice Summit in Charlotte, North Carolina. Brenda has received numerous awards, including a 2011 Institute of Museum and Library Service (IMLS) fellowship at Princeton University—where she cocurated Your True Friend and Enemy: Princeton and the Civil War exhibit and served as a key researcher for the Princeton & Slavery project.  She has served on boards and review panels, and provided consultation for the National Council on Public History, Institute of Museum and Library Service’s Museums for America grant program, Association of African American Museums (AAAM), American Association for State and Local History, Museums & Race, and Museums as Sites of Social Action (MASS), among other museum and nonprofit organizations. Brenda Tindal earned a B.A. in History and Africana Studies from the University of North Carolina Charlotte, an M.A. in American Studies from Emory University, and will graduate with a Ph.D. in History and Culture from Emory University soon. Brenda recently served as the AAAM 2020 Virtual Conference Program Committee Chair.   Excerpts from Brenda Tindal’s nomination letters:

Brenda launched her career in the museum field in 2003 at the Levine Museum of the New South, in Charlotte, North Carolina, where she was part of the curatorial team that developed Courage: The Carolina Story that Changed America, an exhibit on the region’s role in the landmark school desegregation case, Brown v. Board of Education (1954). The exhibit was awarded the National Medal for Museum Service in 2005—the nation’s highest honor awarded to museums and libraries. In 2015,

Brenda is a historian who uses her curatorial work to foment social change. She is a leader SEMC needs in this region now. Recently we have lost Civil Rights luminaries John Lewis and C. T. Vivian, as a keeper of the culture; Brenda not only embodies their legacies by the act of telling stories, but their activism and commitment to social change. Leaders like Brenda Tindal are poised to take museum curation out of the “institutions” and into the streets. I firmly believe that the museum field and society will benefit

Museum Leadership Award Brenda Tindal, Director of Education and Engagement at the International African American Museum

Initiated in 1994, this award recognizes mid-career museum professionals who have shown significant advancement within the profession by leadership in museum activities at his or her institution, within the museum profession as a whole, and especially in the southeast region.


greatly and move closer to “a more perfect union” from the work of curators like Brenda Tindal.

Southport, North Carolina, is the 2020 recipient of the Emerging Museum Professionals Award.

Brenda’s rapid response exhibition, K/Now Justice, K/Now Peace, demonstrated her ability to share authority with the community to present a powerful, timely response precisely when it was most needed. Brenda is a consummate professional, treasured thought partner, and champion of the power of museums to be institutions of transformation. She is also a skilled curator and educator who brings her commitment and passion for scholarship to bear in each role she plays. Her impact on our field has been tremendous and she is just getting started. I can think of no better practitioner/scholar than Brenda Tindal to be presented with this high honor. She is, quite literally, the truth.

Originally from San Diego, California, Katy attended the University of South Carolina, earning her B.A. in History and an M.A. in Secondary Education Social Studies. She finished her post-graduate studies in 2016 and moved to Myrtle Beach, where she worked as an educator at Ripley’s Aquarium, a Volunteer Coordinator and Visitor Services Associate at the Kaminski House, and as an Activities Director at the Hilton. Since 2018, Katy has been the Curator of Education at the North Carolina Maritime Museum where she leads class trips from preschool to high school, offering a menu of topics for each age group that conform to state education standards and developing classes and outreach programs across counties. In her position, Katy also travels to remote schools to develop programs for all ages and abilities and creates homeschool classes for parents to take their children to the museum and learn in a non-traditional atmosphere, a program that has grown exponentially.

Emerging Museum Professionals Award Caitlin (Katy) Menne, Curator of Education at the North Carolina Maritime Museum at Southport

Initiated in 2007, this award recognizes emerging professionals who have demonstrated excellence and leadership in museum activities at their institutions, within the museum profession, and especially in the southeast region.     Caitlin (Katy) Menne, Curator of Education at the North Carolina Maritime Museum at Southport in

Katy is passionate about creating safe spaces for individuals of all abilities within the museum and spearheaded Sensory Saturdays, a program that welcomes visitors in a calm environment where they can learn. Katy’s work assisted the Museum at Southport in becoming the first Certified Autism Center in North Carolina and she worked diligently to train volunteers and staff for this certification. In her short time at Southport, Katy has greatly expanded the museum’s social media presence with different education programs and increased its accessibility for users with various interests in multiple locations. Besides her work in North Carolina, Katy also has a big picture perspective of the museum world and was scheduled to present at two national conferences. Katy is actively involved with SEMC’s Equity and Inclusion Action Team and has moderated several virtual discussions for the Museums Cannot be Silent series. She is an active member of the North Carolina Museums Council serving on the Program Committee and on the DEAI Team for the Environmental Educators of North Carolina. Katy also works tirelessly within her


community to network with local North Carolina historic site educators and include other area museums in her programming.

SEMC’s 2020 Exhibition Competition Winners

Excerpts from Katy Menne’s nomination letters:

Under $10,000 Budget Gold: Orange County Regional Historical Center — The Accidental Historian Silver: LSU Museum of Art — Adore/Adorn: The Elsie Michie Contemporary Jewelry Collection Bronze: McClung Museum of Natural History & Culture — Debut: Recent Acquisitions

Ms. Menne never stops—she is constantly thinking about collaboration with other institutions, building an incredible education department at the museum, and expanding our reach far beyond the Lower Cape Fear. She genuinely cares that all people have a chance for a better education and is involved in several committees to aid in that vision. She takes countless webinars to incorporate new ideas in the field. When the pandemic hit, she identified it as a challenge and was determined to reach as many people as possible taking natural and cultural history of the Lower Cape Fear to their homes. She created education bundles for families, and these supplemental materials have been mailed as far west as Texas and north to Connecticut! Whether in person or virtually, her positive spirit and desire to educate in an engaging manner radiate.  She makes learning about our maritime heritage incredibly accessible and appealing.  She puts a smile on your face and in your heart. The James R. Short, Museum Leadership, Outstanding Service to the Museum Profession Award, Emerging Museum Professional, and Distinguished Contributor awards were presented during the SEMC Virtual Annual Business Meeting on October 20, 2020.

Under $25,000 Budget

Gold: Western Carolina University Fine Arts

Museum — Resounding Change: Sonic Art and the Environment Silver: Emory University Libraries — Framing Shadows: Portraits of Nannies from the Robert Langmuir African American Photograph Collection Silver: Morris Center for Lowcountry Heritage — Beyond the Oaks: Lowcountry Plantations Bronze: Vulcan Park and Museum — Right or Privilege? Alabama Women and the Vote Honorable Mention: Georgia Museum of Art, University of Georgia — Mary Lee Bendolph: Quilted Memories Over $25,000 Budget  Gold: The Florida Holocaust Museum — Beaches, Benches, and Boycotts: The Civil Rights Movement in Tampa Bay Silver: Hunter Museum of American Art — Noel W. Anderson: Blak Origin Moment Bronze: Emory University Libraries — Speak What Must Be Spoken Bronze: Telfair Museums — Suzanne Jackson: Five Decades Honorable Mention: Georgia Museum of Art, University of Georgia — Material Georgia 1733–1900: Two Decades of Scholarship Over $100,000 Budget  Gold: Knoxville Museum of Art — Beauford Delaney and James Baldwin: Through the Unusual Door Silver: Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art — Crystals in Art: Ancient to Today Bronze: The Mint Museum — Classic Black   35

Many thanks to the 2020  Exhibition Competition Co-Chairs and Judges: Ann Rowson Love, PhD, Associate Professor, Director, Museum Education & Visitor-Centered Curation, Liaison to The Ringling  Department of Art Education, Florida State University Emilie Arnold, Exhibition Developer, Dalton, Georgia  2020 Exhibition Competition Judges: Rebecca Bush, CurCom representative, Curator of History/Exhibitions Manager, The Columbus Museum Jeremy Underwood, NAME representative, Building Four Fabrication Michelle Schulte, EdCom representative, program chair, and Gallery Director/Chief Curator at the Anna Lamar Switzer Center for the Visual Arts, Pensacola State College

Best in Show: Deborah Roberts: The Evolution of Mimi, Georgia Museum of Art, University of Georgia

Annual Reports Gold: Gibbes Museum of Art

SEMC’s 2020 Publication Competition Winners BEST IN SHOW

Deborah Roberts: The Evolution of Mimi, Georgia Museum of Art, University of Georgia ANNUAL REPORTS Gold: Gibbes Museum of Art Silver: Florida Museum of Natural History Bronze: Wiregrass Museum of Art

BOOKS & CATALOGUES Gold: Vitus Shell: ‘Bout It ‘Bout It, The Political Power

of Just Being Vitus Shell, Hilliard Art Museum, University of Louisiana at Lafayette Silver: Appalachia Now! An Interdisciplinary Survey of Contemporary Art in Southern Appalachia, Asheville Art Museum Bronze: Envisioning the Future, Asheville Art Museum Honorable Mention: Material Georgia 1733–1900: Two Decades of Scholarship, Georgia Museum of Art, University of Georgia


Brohures & Rack Cards Gold: The Mint Museum

Books & Catalogues Gold: Hilliard Art Museum, University of Louisiana at Lafayette

BROCHURES & RACK CARDS Gold: Live at the Mint Brochure, The Mint

Museum Silver: Asheville Art Museum Bronze: Never Abandon Imagination Rack Card, The Mint Museum Honorable Mention: Site Brochure, Fort Ward Museum and Historic Site  CAMPAIGNS Gold: Grand Opening Celebration, Asheville Art


Silver: Adore Adorn Exhibition, LSU Museum

of Art Bronze: Never Abandon Imagination Campaign, The Mint Museum  Honorable Mention: L’Amour du Vin, Knoxville Museum of Art

Campaigns Gold: Asheville Art Museum


Honorable Mention: 2020 Coveted Couture Save the

Date, The Mint Museum

Gallery Guides Gold: The Mint Museum

GALLERY GUIDES Gold: Immersed In Light: Studio Drift at The Mint

Gallery, The Mint Museum Silver: Frederick Douglass: Embers of Freedom curriculum guide, SCAD Museum of Art Bronze: Form & Function: Shoe Art by Chris Francis curriculum guide, SCAD FASH Museum of Fashion + Film

Magazines & Newsletters Gold: LSU Museum of Art

MAGAZINES & NEWSLETTERS Gold: Art Talk/LSU Museum of Art Newsletter, LSU

Invitations Gold: Telfair Museum

INVITATIONS Gold: Telfair Ball Invitation, Telfair Museums Silver: Celebrate Reynolda invitation, Reynolda

House Museum of American Art Bronze: Classic Black Opening Invitation, The Mint Museum

Museum of Art Silver: Binder Magazine, Columbia Museum of Art Bronze: History Matters, Atlanta History Center  Honorable Mention: Time Travelers’ Gazette, Orange County Regional History Center MAILERS & CALENDARS  Gold: Telfair Museums  Silver: Marco Island Historical Society  Bronze: Muscarelle Museum of Art at

William and Mary


Mailers & Calendars Gold: Telfair Museums

POSTERS Gold: 15th Anniversary Poster, LSU Museum

of Art Silver: Yard Party for Art hand screen-printed souvenir, Wiregrass Museum of Art

Many thanks to the 2020 Publication Competition Chair and Judges: Monty Fields, Curator of Exhibits, Kentucky Derby Museum, Louisville, Kentucky 2020 Publication Competition Judges: Scott Erbes, Curator of Decorative Arts and Design The Speed Art Museum, Louisville, Kentucky

Posters Gold: LSU Museum of Art

Michael Herbert, Creative Director, Solid Light, Louisville, Kentucky Chelsea Niemeier, Senior Graphic Designer Kentucky Derby Museum, Louisville, Kentucky

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Applications Gold: Appleton Museum of Art

SEMC’s 2020 Technology Competition Winners APPLICATIONS  

Gold: Appleton Museum of Art App, Appleton

Museum of Art Silver: Museum App Launch, Wiregrass Museum of Art Bronze: Explore Helen and Sautee Nacoochee Phone App, Sautee Nacoochee Cultural Center CAMPAIGN

Digital Education Gold: Museum of History and Holocaust Education at Kennesaw State University

Silver: Glenn Ligon Campaign, Hunter Museum

of American Art

DIGITAL EDUCATION Gold: Digital Education Resources for the Pandemic

Pivot, Museum of History and Holocaust Education at Kennesaw State University Silver: Museum App Launch, Orange County Regional History Center Bronze: Virtual Programs: Virtual Art By The Glass & Studio at Home, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art Honorable Mention: Free Livestream History Programs for the Public, Northeast Georgia History Center

DIGITAL MARKETING Gold: Yard Party for Art website and related

digital marketing campaign, Wiregrass Museum of Art Silver: Trails & Grounds Takeover with Clay Bakker, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art Bronze: Daily Inspirations on Instagram, Georgia Museum of Art Honorable Mention: History at Home, North Carolina Museum of History GALLERY INSTALLATIONS 

Gold: Mercer Music At Capricorn; Riggs Ward

Design Silver: Hunter Museum of American Art; Glenn Ligon Interactive  


Media Production Gold: Appleton Museum of Art

Student Projects Gold: Muscarelle Museum of Art


YARDPARTYFORART.COM Digital Marketing Gold: Wiregrass Museum of Art

MEDIA PRODUCTION Gold: Curating a Tragedy: Documenting the PULSE

Nightclub Shooting, Orange County Regional History Center Silver: Colin Quashie: Linked, Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art at the College of Charleston Bronze: CVBR, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art Honorable Mention: One Night Only: A Virtual Event for Members, Wiregrass Museum of Art  STUDENT PROJECTS 

Gold:  Rising: The American Indian Movement and

the Third Space of Sovereignty, Muscarelle Museum of Art at William & Mary Silver: Glass to Digital: Restoration of Early Twentieth Century Negatives, Northeast Georgia History Center   Gallery Installations Gold: Mercer Music At Capricorn, Riggs Ward Design


Many thanks to the 2020  Technology  Competition Co-Chairs and Judges: Anna E. Tucker, Curator, Museum of the Southern Jewish Experience, New Orleans, Louisiana Scott Warren, Historic Site Manager II, President James K. Polk State Historic Site, Pineville, North Carolina  2020 Technology Competition Judges: Scotty Almany, Digital Media, Programming & Exhibit Logistics Manager, Birthplace of Country Music Lizz Biswell, Associate Director, Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art, College of Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina Alexander Brooks (Jury Chair),  Education Manager, Gaston County Museum, Dallas, North Carolina Kate Daly, Visual Culture Archivist, Atlanta History Center, Atlanta, Georgia   Dana-Marie Lemmer, Director and Curator, Wiregrass Museum of Art, Dothan, Alabama Ainsley Powell,  Curator of Collections,  City of Raleigh, Parks, Recreation and Cultural Resources Department, Historic Resources and Museum Program, Raleigh, North Carolina 

Student: Lesley Jones Project title: Starting Anew: Restoration of Collections Storage at the NE GA History Center, Northeast Georgia History Center School: University of North Georgia Degree: M.A., History

SEMC’s 2020 SWIM Competition Winners University students throughout our region are engaged in challenging and important work in southeastern museums. They are doing research, producing exhibits, conducting oral history interviews, creating content for websites, and developing public programs. SEMC is committed to recognizing and rewarding excellence in museum work done by students through the annual Spotlight on Student Work in Museums (SWIM) Awards.  Many thanks to the 2020 Student Work in Museums Co-Chairs: Pam Meister, Director,  Mountain Heritage Center, Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, North Carolina Patricia A. Hobbs , Senior Curator of Art Museums at W&L, Washington and Lee University, Lexington, Virginia

Student: Rebekkah Watkins Project title: Exhibit Lesson Plans for Underrepresented Subject Areas & Grade Levels, Turchin Center for the Visual Arts School: Appalachian State University  Degree: Ed.D, Educational Leadership


Student: Naomi Edmondson  Project title: Cartographic Countering: Encouraging Productive Dialogue Between the Charleston Renaissance Artists and African American contributions to “Historic Charleston,” Gibbes Museum of Art School: Virginial Commonwealth University  Degree: M.A., Art History 

Student: Devon Vandervort  Project title: Immigration Brochure, SCAD Library, Special Collections School: Savannah College of Art and Design Degree: B.F.A., Art History 

Student: Sommer Martin  Project title: Into the Exhibits: Research and Modification of NE GA History Center Exhibits, Northeast Georgia History Center School: Illinois Wesleyan University  Degree: B.A., Anthropology

Student: Ruth Moreno Carpio Project title: In For a Penny and Out For a Pound: Accessing Currency from 1849-1950, Northeast Georgia History Center School: University of North Georgia Degree: B.A., History Eduation 



What Will Be Brought into the “New Normal”? KAT Y MEN N E Curator of Education at the North Carolina Maritime Museum at Southport and the 2020 SEMC Emerging Museum Professionals Award Recipient

It’s the question echoing through personal and professional lives: What will be allowed after COVID-19, temporary closures, and other 2020 impacts? For the N.C. Maritime Museum at Southport (NCMMSpt), it’s a commitment to making diversity, equity, accessibility, and inclusion front and center in its mission and vision-something that started with the idea for a new program in 2018. But what do diversity, equity, accessibility, and inclusion really mean? While it is often hard to separate these key terms, the crew here uses the following definitions, adapted from the Minneapolis Institute of Art, Minneapolis. Diversity: Uniqueness of individual or group, not limited to gender identity and expression, race, national origin, sexual orientation, religion, disability, and age; as well as The North Carolina Maritime Museum at Southport, a Certified Autism Center, as of March 2020

cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds, life experiences, skills, thoughts, perspectives, and ideas. To ensure we are taking into consideration all voices and perspectives, NCMMSpt crew uses phrases and questions such as “Help me understand...” and “What are we missing?” Equity: Acknowledging diversity, celebrating what makes us unique, and working together to eliminate barriers that prevent participation of all people and communities. Staff at NCMMSpt work to create and sustain an equitable environment by acknowledging our own life experiences, recognizing where we are strong and where we need additional help. Accessibility: Making accommodations for people with all types of disabilities. NCMMSpt staff creates both physical and cognitive accommodations using variations of language, varying 45

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height of information panels and artifacts, and offering an array of program supplies. Inclusion: Cultivating an environment where people feel supported, listened to, and prepared to do their personal best. Staff at NCMMSpt create inclusive environments by welcoming all people and reassuring them that they belong here. Specific measures include being aware of the language used, providing calm down spaces, and providing staff and volunteer awareness training.

Now back to that new program that planted the seed that has blossomed into so much more than expected. In late-2018, the crew of the NC Maritime Museum at Southport first discussed the idea to offer a sensory-sensitive experience for patrons who may want to visit but need a calmer space to learn. This program, dubbed “Sensory Saturday,� offered dimmed lights, no audio or flashy interactives, and an activity or craft for the first two hours of operation on the first Saturday of every month. The first offering was in January 2019, and the program is currently planned to continue through the end of 2021. During the first 48

few months of the temporary COVID-19 closure, this program was paused; but it was adapted as an activity sheet posted to the museum’s Facebook page since late summer. At the implementation of Sensory Saturday, no one would have foreseen it growing into what it has become. This one program led to staff sitting on related councils and planning committees and set the museum on the path of earning the distinction as the first Certified Autism Center in the state of North Carolina. It also has led to new partnerships, including one with a local community college’s Occupational Therapy Assistant program. From this seed, firm roots have grown to anchor the mission and vision of this institution. In the planning stages of setting annual work plans and personal goals for the upcoming year, staff identified a desire to show a more complete interpretation of the contributors to maritime history and culture in the Lower Cape Fear of North Carolina. While conversations with the Black communities have previously occurred in part, these are now occurring more openly and honestly. Similarly, Native American tribes and nations had not been properly represented. Through curiosity, research, and webinars, the staff has discovered a broader avenue to discuss the region’s first indigenous mariners. Through a collaborative effort of local tribes, the State of North Carolina, community partners, and staff, a Land Acknowledgement was drafted and edited to reflect the indigenous peoples whose land the museum sits on and the tribes and nations still within this region. Over the course of the last few years, staff and volunteers have observed that not all patrons of the museum speak English. Through research and knowledge of the region, staff has identified a desire for Spanish way-finding signage and a tour that is accessible and inclusive to many. When the doors reopened in midSeptember, the staff made sure all directional signage was in both English and Spanish. Translation was acquired and adapted through a partner organization within the State Department of Natural and Cultural Resources. While we hope to have more options for non-English speakers, we are delighted to offer these wayfinding signs to make more people feel comfortable. We also rolled out a “semi-guided” video tour of the exhibit hall that allows patrons to engage with the

materials and content at their own pace and level. The tour is in English spoken word and includes closed captions, as well as an American Sign Language interpreter. As with any project, these practices could come with costs. We found that the pushback we were expecting has not come. In its place, we discovered resounding support in word and monetary donations. Much of the world today is looking for institutions that stand for DEAi. The crew at NCMMSpt has made a deliberate effort to welcome all people to the physical museum, as well as in its virtual learning, programs, and community spaces. And it’s something any site can embrace as well. Here are some quick tips to implement today! 1. Text your city and state to (907) 312-5085 to find out the native lands you inhabit. Land Acknowledgment templates and guidance can often be found online for most communities. 2. Move through your space and imagine if you could not see, hear, walk, or communicate. How would you access the information? What adjustments could be made to make it a more inclusive environment? 3. Search for the Autism Society of the county or state to start a conversation with a trusted source within the community. See if they are interested in an in­ person or virtual program for their group. *Be very mindful that the organization you approach is reputable and does not believe and support programs and therapies that may be found unethical. 4. Please remember to be mindful: The one Black board member or the one family with a child with special needs should not always be tapped for information or advice. remember diversity is good; so, ask around and make other connections. We recognize this is a massive project to undertake; and starting conversations can be scary, especially in institutions that may not have operated in the most equitable way. Do not shy away from that. By starting these conversations, you are making a statement to walk away from antiquated thought and to improve the institution. Just remember to pace yourself! We are trying to improve every day. This is a marathon, not a sprint.



A  SPECIAL THANKS SEMC Endowment Contributions Many thanks to our endowment contributors for investing in the future of SEMC! When you are thinking of honoring or remembering someone, please consider a contribution to the SEMC endowment. For more information, contact Executive Director Zinnia Willits at 404.814.2048 or zwillits@semcdirect.net. Matthew Davis Mary LaGue Elise LeCompte Darcie MacMahon Robert Sullivan

THE PAST PRESIDENTS CIRCLE Members of the Past Presidents Circle contribute $150 annually for at least two years to the endowment fund: George Bassi Sharon Bennett David Butler Tom Butler Tamra Sindler Carboni Micheal A. Hudson

Douglas Noble Robert Rathburn Graig D. Shaak Robert Sullivan Kristen Miller Zohn

THE WILLIAM T. AND SYLVIA F. ALDERSON ENDOWMENT FELLOWS Thirty members of SEMC have made commitments of distinction as Alderson Fellows. Their investment of at least $1,000 each is a significant leadership gift, reflective of a personal commitment to the professional association that has meant so much to each of them. Platinum Alderson Fellows  (minimum $5,000) Sylvia F. Alderson Bob Rathburn Graig D. Shaak Nancy & Robert Sullivan Medallion Alderson Fellows  (minimum $2,500) George Bassi Sharon Bennett David Butler Tamra Sindler Carboni William U. Eiland

Hunter Museum of American Art, Chattanooga, Tennessee

Martha Battle Jackson Pamela Meister Richard Waterhouse Our Current Alderson Fellows  (minimum $1,000) T. Patrick Brennan Michael Brothers W. James Burns Horace Harmon Brian Hicks Pamela Hisey Micheal Hudson Kathleen Hutton Rick Jackson Andrew Ladis John Lancaster Elise LeCompte Allyn Lord Michael Anne Lynn R. Andrew Maass Darcie MacMahon Robin Seage Person Allison Reid Steve Rucker Heather Marie Wells Kristen Miller Zohn


Other SEMC Contributions

Zinnia Willits, President’s Travel Scholarship John Woods, Annual Meeting Scholarships

Angie Albright, Martha Battle Jackson JIMI Fund Scott Alvey, General Operating Caroline Carpenter, General Operating Julie B. Harris, Martha Battle Jackson Jimi Fund Elise LeCompte, Martha Battle Jackson Jimi Fund and Endowment Darcie MacMahon, Leadership Institute Rosalind Martin, Leadership Institute Corinne Midgett, Virtual Programming Mary Miller, Virtual Programming Catherine Pears, Leadership Institute Susan Perry, Leadership Institute Scott Warren, Seasoned Museum Professional Scholarship and Virtual Programming L. Carole Wharton, Leadership Institute Zinnia Willits, Leadership Institute

New or Renewal Memberships Received SEMC thanks those who have renewed or joined our organization for the first time between March 1, 2020, and October 31, 2020. Without your support and participation we could not provide region-wide services such as our Awards and Scholarship programs, as well as our outstanding Annual Meetings and nationally acclaimed Jekyll Island Management Institute. If you are an individual member and your museum is not an institutional member, please encourage them to join. To learn more about SEMC memberships and benefits, or to join online, visit semcdirect.net, email memberservices@semcdirect.net, or call 404.814.2047. For your convenience, the last page of this newsletter is a membership application.



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Vanderbilt University Fine Arts Gallery, Nashville, Tennessee Waterworks Visual Arts Center, Salisbury, North Carolina

(Category 2: $150 ) Aiken County Historical Museum, Aiken, South Carolina Bartow History Museum, Cartersville, Georgia Beaches Museum, Jacksonville Beach, Florida Bertha Lee Strickland Cultural Museum, Seneca, South Carolina Blue Ridge Institute & Museum, Ferrum, Virginia Calhoun County Museum, St. Matthews, South Carolina Casa Feliz Historic Home Museum, Winter Park, Florida Cherokee County Historical Society, Canton, Georgia Clinton House Museum, Fayetteville, Arkansas Computer Museum of America, Roswell, Georgia East Tennessee Historical Society, Knoxville, Tennessee Hampton University Museum, Hampton, Virginia Hilliard Art Museum University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Lafayette, Louisiana

Historic Natchez Foundation, Natchez, Mississippi Horry County Museum, Conway, South Carolina International Museum of the Horse, Lexington, Kentucky Kennesaw State University - Museums, Archives, Kennesaw, Georgia LaGrange Art Museum, LaGrange, Georgia Marietta Museum of History, Marietta, Georgia Matheson History Museum, Gainesville, Florida Morris Center for Lowcountry Heritage, Ridgeland, South Carolina Mosaic Templars Cultural, Little Rock, Arkansas Museum of the American Printing House for the Blind, Louisville, Kentucky Paul W. Bryant Museum, Tuscaloosa, Alabama President James K. Polk State Historic Site/ NC Dept of Natural & Cultural Resources, Pineville, North Carolina River Discovery Center, Paducah, Kentucky Robert C. Williams Museum of Papermaking, Atlanta, Georgia SCAD FASH Museum of Fashion + Film, Atlanta, Georgia


Sumter County Museum, Sumter, South Carolina Thronateeska Heritage Foundation, Inc., Albany, Georgia The Mennello Museum of American Art, Orlando, Florida Thomas County Historical Society, Thomasville, Georgia Tryon Palace, New Bern, North Carolina University of Mississippi Museum & Historic Houses, Oxford, Mississippi University of Richmond Museums, Richmond, Virginia Wetzel County Museum, New Martinsville, West Virginia (Category 3: $250 ) Amelia Island Museum of History, Fernandina Beach, Florida City of Raleigh - Historic Resources & Museum Program, Raleigh, North Carolina Hickory Museum of Art, Hickory, North Carolina Historic Oakland Foundation, Atlanta, Georgia Magnolia Mound Plantation, Baton Rouge, Louisiana Museum Center at 5ive Points, Cleveland, Tennessee Old State House Museum, Little Rock, Arkansas

President James K Polk Home & Museum, Columbia, Tennessee West Baton Rouge Museum, Port Allen, Louisiana Wiregrass Museum of Art, Dothan, Alabama (Category 4: $350 ) Alexandria Museum of Art, Alexandria, Louisiana Anniston Museum of Natural History, Anniston, Alabama Augusta Museum of History, Augusta, Georgia Blowing Rock Art & History Museum, Blowing Rock, North Carolina Casemate Museum, Fort Monroe Authority, Fort Monroe, Virginia Center for Puppetry Arts, Atlanta, Georgia Children’s Hands on Museum, Tuscaloosa, Alabama City of Birmingham Sloss Furnaces, Birmingham, Alabama Cook Museum of Natural Science, Decatur, Alabama Coral Gables Museum, Miami, Florida Discovery Park of America, Inc., Union City, Tennessee

Baltimore New York Atlanta 67

Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art, Charleston, South Carolina Hermann-Grima & Gallier Historic Houses, New Orleans, Louisiana High Point Museum, High Point, North Carolina Hills & Dales Estate, LaGrange, Georgia Jekyll Island Museum, Jekyll Island, Georgia Leepa-Rattner Museum, Tarpon Springs, Florida Louisiana State University Museum of Art, Baton Rouge, Louisiana Office of Historic Alexandria, Alexandria, Virginia Orange County Regional History Center, Orlando, Florida Sautee Nacoochee Cultural Center, Sautee Nacoochee, Georgia Shiloh Museum of Ozark History, Springdale, Arkansas The Charleston Museum, Charleston, South Carolina The Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia, Atlanta, Georgia U. S. Marshals Museum, Inc., Fort Smith, Arkansas

SPIRITS OF KENTUCKY Frazier History Museum

West Virginia Department of Arts, Culture and History, Charleston, West Virginia Whalehead in Historic Corolla, Moyock, North Carolina (Category 5: $450 ) Alabama Department of Archives and History, Montgomery, Alabama Asheville Art Museum, Asheville, North Carolina Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, Charlotte, North Carolina Cape Fear Museum of History and Science, Wilmington, North Carolina Coastal Georgia Historical Society, St. Simons Island, Georgia Columbia Museum of Art, Columbia, South Carolina Culture & Heritage Museums, Rock Hill, South Carolina Greenville County Museum of Art, Greenville, South Carolina Historic Arkansas Museum, Little Rock, Arkansas Hunter Museum of American Art, Chattanooga, Tennessee Huntington Museum of Art, Huntington, West Virginia




Children’s Museum of Indianapolis


HERE BE THE DRAGONS Traveling Exhibit

ATX MISSION TO MARS Kennedy Space Center


Huntsville Museum of Art, Huntsville, Alabama Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art at Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse & Museum, Jupiter, Florida Kentucky Derby Museum, Louisville, Kentucky Knoxville Museum of Art, Knoxville, Tennessee Louisiana Art & Science Museum, Baton Rouge, Louisiana Louisiana’s Old State Capitol, Baton Rouge, Louisiana McClung Museum of Natural History and Culture, Knoxville, Tennessee Mississippi Arts and Entertainment Experience, Meridian, Mississippi Mississippi Department of Archives and History, Jackson, Mississippi MOCA Jacksonville, Jacksonville, Florida Morse Museum of American Art, Winter Park, Florida Muscarelle Museum of Art, Williamsburg, Virginia Museum of Arts & Sciences, Daytona Beach, Florida National Museum of the Marine Corps, Triangle, Virginia National Sporting Library & Museum, Middleburg, Virginia

North Carolina Museum of History, Raleigh, North Carolina Oak Alley Foundation, Vacherie, Louisiana Orlando Museum of Art, Inc, Orlando, Florida Polk Museum of Art, Lakeland, Florida Reynolda House Museum of American Art, Winston-Salem, North Carolina South Carolina State Museum, Columbia, South Carolina Tampa Bay History Center, Tampa, Florida Tampa Museum of Art, Inc., Tampa, Florida Tellus Science Museum, Cartersville, Georgia The Columbus Museum, Columbus, Georgia The Florida Holocaust Museum, St. Petersburg, Florida Virginia Museum of History & Culture, Richmond, Virginia William Breman Jewish Heritage Museum, Atlanta, Georgia The Wolfsonian – FIU, Miami Beach, Florida


(Category 6: $550 )

Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, North Carolina

Arkansas Arts Center, Little Rock, Arkansas Birmingham Museum of Art, Birmingham, Alabama Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, Nashville, Tennessee Frist Art Museum, Nashville, Tennessee Florida Museum of Natural History, Gainesville, Florida High Museum of Art, Atlanta, Georgia Historic New Orleans Collection, New Orleans, Louisiana Kentucky Historical Society, Frankfort, Kentucky National Civil Rights Museum, Memphis, Tennessee Telfair Museums, Savannah, Georgia The Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk, Virginia

ACADEMIC MEMBERS ($250) Henry B. Plant Museum, Tampa, Florida Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, Tennessee

CORPORATE MEMBERS Business Associate ($350) Alexander Haas, Atlanta, Georgia Available Light, Boston, Massachusetts Banks Creative, Charleston, South Carolina Blair, Inc, Springfield, Virginia Conserv, Birmingham, Alabama Creative Arts Unlimited, Pinellas Park, Florida Gaylord Archival, Syracuse, New York Haizlip Studio, Memphis, Tennessee Helms Briscoe, Alpharetta, Georgia Hutchinson Design Group, Alexandria, Virginia Keen DC, LLC, Silver Spring, Maryland Corporate Friend ($1,200) 10-31-MuseumRails, Louisa, Virginia 1220 Exhibits, Inc., Nashville, Tennessee Bonsai Fine Arts Inc, Glen Burnie, Maryland

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Willis Towers Watson - Fine Art, Jewelry, Potomac, Maryland Zone Display Cases, Charlesbourg, Quebec Corporate Partner ($2,100) Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, Charleston, South Carolina National Museum of African American History and Culture, Smithsonian Institution-Office of Strategic Partnerships, Washington, District of Columbia

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Canton, William O. Golding (1874–1943). Golding was kidnapped as a boy on Savannah riverfront in 1882 and spent life at sea.

Telfair Museums in Savannah has acquired 17 drawings by important American folk artist William O. Golding (1874–1943), giving the museum one of the two largest collections of his work in the world.

signature pencil-and-crayon style from 1932 through 1939, during his time as a patient at the U.S. Marine Hospital in Savannah. The newly acquired drawings include a diverse cross-section of Golding’s travels and experiences, depicting sail and steam ships, whaling vessels, a Chinese port, the Rock of Gibraltar, Cape Horn, France, and Tahiti—and possibly the artist’s only known self-portrait.

Golding created the 17 maritime drawings in his

“We’re excited to acquire the largest known group of



Whaler, William O. Golding (1874–1943)

remaining works by Golding, which span his entire active period and the full gamut of his subject matter,” said Harry DeLorme, Telfair’s senior curator of education, who is in the process of organizing a large exhibition of Golding’s work that will debut in 2022. “This collection will be an invaluable resource as we research his work and bring his amazing art and story to a wider audience.” ​ Telfair’s permanent collection already included four of Golding’s works, bringing the museum’s holdings to 21

of the about 100 drawings he is thought to have produced. Others are in the collections of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the American Folk Art Museum in New York, and the Morris Museum of Art in Augusta.



Fuller E. Callaway’s letterhead depicts all of his business ventures, from sketches of his cotton mills to lists of his banks and department stores.


opposite: Fuller E. Callaway Foundation President, Tripp Penn, remarked on the impact of Callaway Mills and the Callaway family’s philanthropy at the opening ceremony. He is standing next to the Milstead Mill bell. Photo courtesy of Shannon Belletti.

This year, Hills and Dales Estate in LaGrange, GA, celebrated the 150th birthday of Fuller E. Callaway Sr. and the 120th anniversary of the opening of his first cotton mill, Unity. In celebration of these milestones, the estate is excited to share their newest exhibit, Spinning a Yarn: Unraveling the Callaway Mills Story.

citizens of Lagrange by funding community programs for the mill villages such as housing, parks, churches, hospitals, schools, greenhouses, YMCAs, Men’s and Women’s Clubs, gardens, gymnasiums, direct healthcare including dentistry, and profit-sharing. Callaway Mills and the Callaway family are cornerstones in the history of this community.

The exhibit tells the story of Fuller E. Callaway Sr.’s textile mill enterprise, Callaway Mills, which lasted from 1900 until the mills were sold in 1968. The brand was known nationwide as the “Label of Luxury” for textiles due to their progressive research, creative designs, hardworking employees, and a national sales network. While the economic effect of the mills was great, Fuller Sr. also impacted the social welfare of the mill employees and

While the core purpose of this exhibit is to share the story of Fuller Sr.’s business, the hope was that it would attract a more diverse audience with the inclusion of information on some of the people in the mill communities, recreation teams and performances, and military service. We also wanted to share our textile heritage with more recent residents and younger citizens so they would have a stronger sense of our community history. 74


Unity Mill with cow: Fuller Sr. served as Unity’s secretary, treasurer, and director, and chose the mill’s first product, a heavy canvas-style material that is both strong and water-resistant known as cotton duck.



Lift Truck Drivers: (Front to back) Tom Freeman, Johnny Ellison, Henry Lee Cotton, James Wood, Green Tucker, Enoch Dickson, Ollie Buford, and Nora Yancey are employed as Hyster lift truck Drivers at Valway Plant, Dye Plant, and Hillside Plant, all of which were part of Callaway’s textile enterprise.

Some of the more interesting artifacts on display were loaned by former employees of Callaway Mills or their relatives.

the largest and only outdoor artifact in the exhibit, was held outdoors in front of a small audience. It was also livestreamed on social media, a first for the organization.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the exhibit opening originally scheduled for July 15, Fuller Sr.’s birthday, was postponed until September 18. The ceremony, which included the ringing of the Milstead Mill bell,

Spinning a Yarn: Unraveling the Callaway Mills Story will be on display until February 27, 2021. Find out more about Hills and Dales Estate and this exhibition at hillsanddales.org. 78

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LOUISIANA LSU Museum of Art’s exhibition Letitia Huckaby: This Same Dusty Road features quilted photographic works based on Huckaby’s faith, family, and cultural heritage in Louisiana. Much of the work in this exhibition grows out of memories of visiting family who lived along Louisiana Highway 19. Through heirloom fabrics, traditional hand-quilting techniques, and photography, Huckaby mines the legacy of her family—particularly the matriarchs—connecting and confronting past and present inequities. She composes her family portraits to evoke old masterworks and altar pieces. Another portrait series features nuns at the Sisters of the Holy Family Mother House, which was founded in 1842 by African American women. Support for this exhibition and all LSU MOA exhibitions is provided by the Annual Exhibition Fund donors. Now on view at LSU Museum of Art until March 14, 2021. Learn more: www.lsumoa. org/letitia-huckaby. Letitia Huckaby holds an MFA in Photography from the University of North Texas, a BFA in Photography from the University of Boston at Lesley, and a BA in Journalism from the University of Oklahoma at Norman, Oklahoma. Her work is part of the permanent collections of the Library of Congress, Art Museum of Southeast Texas in Beaumont, the Samella Lewis Contemporary Art Collection at Scripps College in Claremont, California, the Brandywine Workshop in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, among others. She has had residencies with the Gee’s Bend Quilters and Brandywine. Letitia Huckaby also served as guest curator to place selected photographs from Southbound: Photographs of and about the New South (also on view at LSU MOA and organized by the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art ) in LSU MOA’s Art in Louisiana permanent galleries to add a new lens through which to view the collection. Southbound artists featured among LSU MOA’s permanent collection include Will Jacks, Kathleen Robbins, Titus Brooks Heagins, Keith Calhoun and Chandra McCormick, Stacy Kranitz, and Jeanine Michna-Bales.

Installation views of Letitia Huckaby: This Same Dusty Road at LSU Museum of Art



innovations FLORIDA Earlier in the year when COVID-19 forced businesses across the world to close their doors to the public, museums looked at the online world as a means to connect, albeit virtually, with their visitors. The Appleton Museum of Art is located in Ocala, Florida and like many other museums, it increased the development and delivery of free digital assets for its members and the general public, both youth and adults. This included educational and curatorial videos, as well as games, puzzles and online artist talks. The Appleton team also devised a unique online event to generate a revenue stream called “Appleton Store @ Home.” This regular, monthly virtual shopping experience through Zoom allows shoppers to enjoy live product demonstrations by Appleton Store manager Griselle “Gigi” Gonzalez, who shares her favorite merchandise with viewers live from the Appleton Store. By hosting the event in the store, Gigi is able to also curate personal shopping experiences for her guests. Engaged shoppers are invited to use the Zoom chat feature to request other merchandise they may wish to view and purchase. This way they can easily add a couple of extra items to their basket from the safety and comfort of their own home. Visitor Services staff are available close by on telephone lines to either take orders or to assist shoppers with gift needs through the Zoom chat feature. These events were created to meet the needs of the museum patrons who were unable to visit the museum store during the temporary closure. Now that the museum has

The graphic used for Appleton Store @ Home is a bitmoji of Gigi who runs the actual events.

reopened, the team has continued to offer the online shopping nights due to their popularity. The Appleton is hosting an exclusive Black Friday shopping event for museum members and two further shopping events before Dec. 25. Participants will be able to do all their holiday shopping online. To find out more information on upcoming “Appleton Store @Home” events, please check the event section on the Appleton Museum Facebook page, or visit AppletonMuseum.org. 82



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people and places

Austin Bell

Dr. Torren Gatson


municipally issued badges used by free people of color and enslaved workers in the antebellum south particularly with regard to Savannah.

Austin Bell, Curator of Collections for the Marco Island Historical Society, was awarded the Gulfshore Business 40 Under 40 Award, given annually to rising young professionals in Southwest Florida.

GEORGIA The Davenport House Museum held their Harvest Lecture via Zoom on November 16, 2020. The lecture was entitled Mobility in America’s First Planned City: Understanding Slave Badges and Enslaved Autonomy on the Southern Landscape. Dr. Torren Gatson spoke on

Dr. Torren Gatson completed his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from North Carolina Central University and his Ph.D. from Middle Tennessee State University. Dr. Gatson is a trained public historian and a scholar of United States southern history, with an emphasis in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries African American built environment. As an historic preservationist, Dr. Gatson conceptualizes the impact of African American material culture on the physical and cultural landscape. This year’s Harvest Lecture Series was proudly supported by ABR Digital Office Solutions. 84

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IMPORTANT DATES The deadline for Winter/Spring 2021 Inside SEMC newsletter is March 26, 2021. To submit information for the newsletter, please contact the Council Director in your state or memberservices@semcdirect.net.

SEMC SEMC 2021 Program Proposal Deadline SEMC 2021 Program Committee Meeting SEMC Council Mid-Year Meeting National Museums Meetings America Alliance of Museums Advocacy Day American Alliance of Museums 2021 Annual Meeting American Association of State and Local History Annual Meeting State Museum Meetings Arkansas Museums Association Georgia Association of Museums and Galleries North Carolina Museums Council South Carolina Federation of Museums Tennessee Association of Museums Virginia Association of Museums West Virginia Association of Museums

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Profile for Southeastern Museums Conference (SEMC)

Inside SEMC Fall 2020  

The Newsletter of the Southeastern Museums Conference

Inside SEMC Fall 2020  

The Newsletter of the Southeastern Museums Conference