Preservation and Progress
All times are Eastern Standard Time. Schedule subject to change.
Thursday, October 20, 2022
Dee is President of Preservation Delaware and lives with her family in her childhood home in Rockland, Delaware adjacent to Brandywine Creek State Park. Here her passion for conservation and historic preservation was instilled exploring the woods and streams of the park as a child, and watching as the acres around were developed and historic resources and open space lost forever. Dee served as the Executive Director of Preservation Delaware from 1995-2002. Dee then became the Executive Director of S.A.V.E., a land use, conservation planning and transportation advocacy organization based in Chester County, Pennsylvania. While at S.A.V.E. Dee led initiatives to protect historic bridges and rural community character, being recognized with Preservation Pennsylvania’s Chairman’s Award in 2012. She has served on numerous nonprofit boards including many in the conservation and preservation arena. In 2010, Dee co-founded Plastic Free Delaware and continues to lead its initiatives today. Since November 2018 Dee has served as a New Castle County Council Member and has already led the passage of several ordinances which strengthen county code regarding historic resources.
Following ten years as the Deputy Director of the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural
Affairs, Suzanne began her service as Delaware’s State Historic Preservation Officer in July
2022. She holds a B.A. in anthropology from the University of Delaware, a M.A. in museum
studies from the University of Washington and attended the Museum Management Institute, a
program of the J. Paul Getty Trust. With over 35 years of experience in the museum and
preservation field she has experience in all aspects of division operations including fiscal
management, programming, collections, capital projects, and preservation and strategic
planning. She has worked in Florida, Virginia and Delaware at the Fort Lauderdale Historical
Society, the Petersburg Museums, and the Valentine Museum the prior to returning to
Delaware where she was raised.
Keynote Speaker - W. Barksdale Maynard
W. Barksdale Maynard is the author of seven university press books about American history, art, and architecture, including Buildings of Delaware in the Buildings of the United States Series. In 2020 he was invited to write the American entries in Sir Banister Fletcher’s A History of Architecture for the Royal Institute of British Architects. His 2021 book Artists of Wyeth Country: Howard Pyle, N. C. Wyeth, and Andrew Wyeth is a rare, unauthorized biography of a local artistic dynasty and has generated controversy. Also in 2021 he edited The Classicist magazine on the subject of Mid Atlantic architecture. Currently he is a lecturer at the University of Delaware.
Faith Kuehn, Ph.D.
Faith earned a Ph.D. in Entomology from the University of Arizona, M.S. in Botany and Zoology from the University of Oklahoma, a B.A. in Zoology from Connecticut College. and an M.B.A from the University of Delaware. She worked in Research, Development, and Technical Support for E.I. DuPont de Nemours & Co.’s Agricultural Division and later as Plant Industries Administrator for the Delaware Department of Agriculture. She chaired the “Friends of the Spiral Cemetery, leading a team of State employees and members of the mental health community to erect a cemetery monument recognizing those buried there. Faith collaborated with State legislators and Archives to establish a Delaware Historic Marker at the Spiral Cemetery in 2016 (NCC 213) and Farnhurst Potter’s Field in 2020 (NCC 254). She is currently working with Delaware Master Naturalist and community volunteers to restore Farnhurst Potter’s Field and dignify the graves.
Regina Barry, Ph.D.
Regina M. Barry, Ph.D., has been doing genealogy for 40+ years - and re-did most of it over again during the last 20 of those years! She is a volunteer librarian at the Wilmington Family History Center (Dickinson Lane) and teaches special-interest classes there year-round (2nd Saturday of the Month Chats & Demos). In a firm commitment to a digital future, she put a handful of original documents and pictures in the safe-deposit box and eliminated 8 double file-cabinets of genealogy paper - scanned into the cloud (with physical off-site backups).
She has lectured at regional genealogical conferences, grade schools, scout troops, the State Archives of Delaware in Dover and has published several articles. Her areas of special interest are early southern colonial court records, African-American genealogical research and 'Genealogy for the Timid, Tense and Terrified - Getting Started!' Other favorite topics include (but are not limited to!) - 'Oh, No - My Ancestor did NOT do That!', 'Madhouses, Workhouses, Orphanages and Jails - so that's where he was...', 'Divorce? Who Needs It?' and 'Libel and Slander - Great Genealogy Tools'.
Gloria Henry is the site supervisor of the John Dickinson Plantation, a museum operated by the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs which is a National Historic Landmark and a unit of the First State National Historical Park. Gloria’s history degree from the University of Delaware has enabled her to spend the last 31 years, conducting historic demonstrations, portraying enslaved individuals, transcribing primary documents, conducting tours, creating exhibits, and developing interactive programs. Her current research focuses on the enslaved, free and indentured African American people who lived, labored, and died on the John Dickinson Plantation. Gloria Henry is currently the Vice-President of the Underground Railroad Coalition of Delaware and an advisory board member for The Real American Revolution Multimedia Center and Consortium for Civic Education. Gloria Henry is passionate about sharing Delaware history.
Michael Kalmbach received his MFA at the University of Delaware in 2008. Shortly after graduation he accepted a position at the Delaware College of Art & Design, and founded the New Wilmington Art Association, an artist collective that was active from August 2008 to April 2013. This work led to Michael’s involvement with the Chris White Community Development Corporation, which developed the 23-unit artist live/work space, Shipley Lofts. Kalmbach served the CWCDC as Board Chairman from 2013-2016. In June 2011, he accepted a contract with the State’s Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health to develop and direct a peer-run art space. The Creative Vision Factory has been open since December of 2011, and fosters the creative potential of individuals on the behavioral health spectrum in a studio art environment that cultivates integration with the community through a program of exhibitions, workshops, and communal workspace.
Kalmbach has served on the Delaware State Arts Council since 2016, and from this seat in 2021, he led the successful initiative to include Hip Hop as a funding category of the Delaware Division of the Arts’ Individual Artist Fellowship program. He is the recipient of several awards, including the 2010 Governor’s Awards for the Arts’ Peggy Amsterdam Award for Outstanding Achievement, the 2012 League of Women Voters of New Castle County’s Carrie Chapman Catt Award, and a 2017 University of Delaware College of Arts & Sciences Alumni Achievement Award. Michael maintains his painting practice and has exhibited his work in venues throughout the Mid-Atlantic, including the Delaware Art Museum, the Delaware Contemporary, the Biggs Museum of American Art, and UnSmoke Systems in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
RuthAnn Purchase James
RuthAnn Purchase James is a linguist turned sociologist of Lenape-Welsh descent, whose studies have taken her across nearly every continent, seeking those universal truths that guide us to live together well with All Our Relations. Her greatest honor is working toward Lenape language restoration and restoring dignity for her mother’s mother’s people, who experienced the forced removal from Egg Harbor, NJ to Meniolagomeka, a safe “Indian Town” founded by Moravians in the Lehigh Valley.
Learning to honor her mother’s mother’s people, RuthAnn is a Water Protector immersed in Unami dialect of Lenape Language, supporting cultural restoration and sustainable development through the arts, with honor for Lenape Everywhere.
Dan Shortridge is a historian, marketing consultant, former journalist, and ex-government communications leader who blends storytelling skills with a deep appreciation for the past. He has led PR and marketing for the Delaware Department of Agriculture, the Delaware State Housing Authority, and the Sussex Technical School District. Dan is the author of “DIY Public Relations,” a media handbook for local nonprofits and small businesses, and the co-author of “Secret Delaware: A Guide to the Weird, Wonderful, and Obscure” and “100 Things to Do in Delaware Before You Die.” He is at work on his fourth local-interest book, about the vanished and disappeared places of the First State.
Gene Castellano is an avid researcher of Delaware history and a former trustee of the Delaware Historical Society, where he chaired the Buildings and Grounds committee. He has authored several papers and given lectures on many local topics including the Bancroft textile mills and Woodlawn Trustees. He is also the author of Wilmington: Preservation and Progress.
Gene holds a Bachelor of Chemical Engineering degree from Villanova University and an M.A. in Liberal Studies from the University of Delaware. He also holds Professional Certifications in Museum Studies and Historic Preservation from UD. During his business career, he held positions in product development, finance and leadership with the DuPont Company and W. L. Gore and Associates, Inc. While at Gore, he led the creation of the company’s history archive.
In 2016, he joined the staff of Hagley Museum and Library to start-up Hagley Heritage Curators, a program to help companies and trade associations preserve and research their history. He is presently a contract archivist and historian for the Woodlawn Trustees.
Gene lives in Wilmington and is a board member of Preservation Delaware and the Siegel Jewish Community Center.
Rebecca L. Wilson has over forty years’ experience in non-profit organizations, over thirty of these years in senior level management positions. She has worked in a number of museums ranging from decorative arts, anthropology & archeology, art, and historic sites – Old Swedes Historic Site; New Castle Historical Society; Jekyll Island Museum; Tampa Museum of Art; University Museum, University of Pennsylvania; and Winterthur Museum & Gardens as well as, regional museum association the Mid-Atlantic Association of Museums. She has lectured on collection issues, policies and procedures, ethics, and leadership.
Wilson has worked on preservation projects both in Delaware and Georgia. Additionally, she has developed many preservation programs, seminars, and workshops on landscape, historic structures, and interiors, for the Mid Atlantic Association of Museums. Wilson worked for close to 25 years in institutions where she developed preservation plans and oversaw the preservation projects. She is concerned with preservation of Delaware icons and helping individuals understand why preservation is an important component to the state’s history.
Linda Suskie is Board Co-Chair of Arasapha Garden Club. Summaries of her research on the history of Arasapha Garden Club and the Amstel House garden can be viewed at www.arasapha.org/history and www.arasapha.org/amstel-house-garden. She is a historic architecture enthusiast and a tour guide for New Castle Historical Society. Her “Delmarva Backroads” blog (https://delmarvabackroads.blogspot.com) focuses on historic buildings along the Delaware Bayshore Byway.
Brenton Grom was appointed Director of the George Read II Read House & Gardens in 2018 after two years as Curator of Special Collections at the Delaware Historical Society’s research library. His time at the Read House, a National Historic Landmark acquired by the Society in 1975, has included an overhaul of its interpretive philosophy, development strategy, and branding, as well as a $1M HVAC upgrade. He is currently spearheading a renovation campaign in partnership with DAVID RUBIN Land Collective of Philadelphia to make the Read House landscape environmentally, financially, and socially sustainable for the next generation.
Mr. Grom also founded and directs the Society’s Harry N. Baetjer III Junior Fellows Program, a highly competitive summer experience for high-school students of widely varying backgrounds and interests. The program combines hand-on internship projects with a rigorous seminar component, and fellows regularly go on to attend top colleges including Yale, MIT, Stanford, St. Andrews (UK), Swarthmore, the University of Delaware, and others.
He studied musicology at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and Case Western Reserve University and American history and material culture at the University of Delaware, and has held fellowships at the American Antiquarian Society, Library of Congress, Massachusetts Historical Society, Clements Library (University of Michigan), Historic Deerfield, and Trinity College (Hartford), among others. His past research investigates the relationship between manuscript culture, print culture, and collective memory in early American sacred music. He is a co-chair of the Mill Summit leadership conference and has most recently moderated museum conference sessions on resolving generational bias and integrating facilities planning with interpretive strategy.
Amy Golden-Shepherd is the new Deputy Director of the Division of Historical and Cultural
Affairs. In her 28 years as an educator, she spent a significant amount of time engaging in
diversity, equity, and inclusion work and building community through conversation and
engagement. Her drive is for creating opportunities for people to share stories that have for too
long gone unheard.
Meg Hutchins is the Engagement & Collections Manager for the DHCA. Since joining in 2021,
they have been managing a team of collections and engagement professionals, as well as
leading special projects in inclusive history. Meg has a background in social history, museum
studies and historic preservation and enjoys helping DHCA reach its full potential.
As the Historic Sites Team Manager, Dan Citron is responsible for the museums and historic
sites that the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs owns and operates
throughout the state. These include the Zwaanendael Museum, John Dickinson Plantation,
Johnson Victrola Museum, The Old State House, and New Castle Court House Museum, all of
which are regularly open year-round, and Cooch’s Bridge Historic Site, which is under
development to be open full time. Dan holds a B.A. in History from the Pennsylvania State
University. With over 20 years’ experience in the museum field, Dan began his career in
education and interpretation at the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation and Fort Delaware State
Park. He is excited to be working on a variety of large and small projects, programs, and
events with the dedicated and creative staff of the Sites Team.
Gwen Davis is Delaware’s Deputy State Historic Preservation Officer, whose office is within
the Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs. She has the privilege of leading a dedicated team
of archaeologists, architectural historians, historians and information resource specialists who
carry out the work of the SHPO. Gwen is an archaeologist with over 30 years’ experience. She
holds degrees in anthropology with a specialization in archaeology from the University of
Delaware (B.A.) and the State University of New York at Albany (M.A.)
Abdullah R. Muhammad, Ph.D.
Dr. Abdullah R. Muhammad spent his formative years in Baltimore, MD, where he lived for 38 years. After graduating from Baltimore’s top college prep high school (Baltimore City College High School), he enrolled at Bowdoin College, Brunswick, ME, after turning down acceptance to the Air Force Academy. After only 3 years at Bowdoin, he graduated cum laude as an early graduate. After leaving Bowdoin, Dr. Muhammad returned to Baltimore to teach English at his high school alma mater. Although he had been admitted to four law schools, the lack of funding and the start of a new family pushed him to embark on a successful 17-year career in the insurance industry instead.
As a successful insurance agent, Dr. Muhammad had time to maintain his commitment to education by rising from PTA president at his daughters’ middle school, to Regional PTA Coordinator, to President of Baltimore PTAs and PTOs, and finally to Parent Representative on the Superintendent’s Advisory Board. While serving as an Advisory Board member, he was able to revamp an ailing and failing Dropout Retrieval Program, institute a Citywide In-school Suspension Program, and establish a mandate for every school to have an active Parent Organization.
In 1993, Dr. Muhammad moved to New York City, where he was given the opportunity to complete his Master of Arts degree at Teachers College, Columbia University. He completed his degree with honors in 1996, while working full-time as a Special Education teacher for middle school students in Queens, NY. He moved to Delaware in 2003, after spending 10 years studying and teaching in New York City, where he successfully completed two master’s degrees in education, and served as a principal for one year.
After arriving in Delaware, Dr. Muhammad served one year in the Colonial School District where he discovered a need for a “new kind” of history book. He began by publishing a #1-selling Delaware History calendar, followed by his reader-friendly history book, which capsulates the pivotal and often “first-of-its-time” historical events of Delaware. This “one-of-a-kind” history book, The Making of Delaware One Day at a Time quickly became the #1-selling history book in the state within 3 months after its release!
Dr. Muhammad served as an Adjunct Professor in the History Department at Delaware State University, where he completed his doctoral degree in under 3 years and completed his second history book, “Africans in New Sweden: The Untold Story”. Prior to joining the teaching staff at DSU, he was recruited to serve on the board of Delaware Preservation Fund. While serving on the Board of DPF, he served as both Vice President and President, before joining the Board of Preservation Delaware, Inc. In addition to his position as Project Director for the DuPont Colored School Oral History Project, he serves as Chairman of the New Castle County Library Advisory Board, Vice President of Old Swedes Historic Site, and In-House Historian for the New Sweden Centre.
Aleasa Jay Hogate
Aleasa is the Vice President and Education Director for the New Sweden Centre. She has also served as the Swedish Colonial Society's recording secretary 2000-2014 and Trustee for the New Sweden Colonial Farmstead. In 2011, she initiated an archaeological "search for Fort Elfsborg," the Swedish fort built in 1643 on the western banks of New Jersey. No evidence was found, but it renewed interest in finding the New Sweden Colony established in New Jersey.
In 1988, she organized an art completion and traveling art show for the 350th Anniversary of New Sweden. She and her husband Joe (now deceased) took the winning art works around to ten different places in the Delaware River Valley.
After many years of effort under her leadership, the Crane Hook Church Monument was relocated to the grounds of Old Swedes Church, where it is now accessible to the public. A new historic marker conveys the story of the Crane Hook Congregation that built Holy Trinity Church—the 1699 National landmark on Church Street in the city of Wilmington.
June 6, 2004, Aleasa conceived, designed, and raised the money to erect the New Sweden Heritage monument in Pennsville, which was dedicated by the Ambassador of Sweden, Jan Eliason; Consul General of Finland, Jukka Leino, and Nanticoke Lenape Tribal Co-Chairman Lewis Pierce.
Aleasa has lectured on New Sweden at local schools, lodges, Women’s Clubs, Churches, historical societies, as well as VASA/SWEA in Washington, D.C.; Salem County Rotary Club, Stockholm Rotary Club, Midsommer with Swedish Americans in Lindsborg, KS, Swedish American Society, Portland Oregon. Also, she has had articles about colonial New Sweden published in many newsletters.
Aleasa is a charter member of the Pennsville Historical Society, Salem County Historical Society, Genealogical Society of Salem County, the Woman's Club of Pennsville, the Swedish Log Cabin Society, and the American Swedish Historical Museum. She has received many awards and recognitions such as: Outstanding Volunteer Award on Behalf of Learning-Disabled Children, Women of Achievement in Art in Salem County, Elected Fellow of the Swedish Colonial Society, Swedish Council of America Merit Award, Community Spirit Award in Salem County, Daughters of American Revolution National President's Community Contribution award, the Salem Preservation Award, and the Swedish Colonial Society Distinguished Service Award.
Aleasa is the mother of three sons—Joe, Mark, and Paul—and two grandsons, Jesse and Aedan. As a full time volunteer, she promotes colonial Swedish history throughout the Delaware River Valley in the persona of her ancestor Elisabeth Dalbo, wife of Anders Larsson Dalbo, one of the first families to come to New Sweden in 1640.
Janet Anderson, a now retired engineer, has been involved with Colonial Swedish history in the Delaware Valley since 1998 when she took a class to successfully become a sailing crew member of the Kalmar Nyckel (the Tall Ship of Delaware, a re-creation of the ship that brought European settlers to the first permanent settlement in the Delaware Valley).
Since then, she has become involved with other similar organizations, including the New Sweden Centre (NSC) and the Delaware Swedish Colonial Society (DSCS), serving in various offices such as President, Secretary, and Treasurer. Currently, she is President of the NSC and has been for the past 10 years. In all her years as president, Janet has learned that the best way to get big things accomplished is to let Aleasa Hogate, Vice-President of the NSC, take the lead!
Deb Hofmann grew up in Lower Bucks County surrounded with Revolutionary War history. A teacher for more than 51 years, Deb has taught all ages and a continuum of abilities, both children and adults. She taught college level classes focused on how children (and adults) learn.
The seed of Deb's interest in New Sweden was planted in 1988 with the visit of His Majesty King Carl XVI Gustav. Ten years later, in 1998, the Kalmar Nyckel Foundation nurtured that seed when Deb became a member of its first sailor training class. She was trained to sail the 17th century recreation of the Kalmar Nyckel, the ship that brought the first European settlers to Delaware from Sweden and Finland. One of the responsibilities of the crew was to inform guests of the role of the Swedish Colony on the Christina River. This led her to join the New Sweden Centre, which increased her reading and interest in the small, short-lived colony that gave so much to the future of America.
Who Wore What When is one of many programs the New Sweden Centre has sponsored in an effort to inform people of the history of the Delaware Valley and the contributions of the New Sweden Colony.
Friday, October 21, 2022
John has lived in Delaware since 1971. He attended St. Mark's High School and received a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Delaware in 1983. His wife is Dr. Lindsey Slater, a physician with Nephrology Associates. They live in the Holly Oak community in Eastern Brandywine Hundred. John has served as New Castle County Councilman for the Eighth District since 2004. He has been committed to preserving historic resources in the district and throughout New Castle County.
Laura developed her passion for storytelling early on, and found a way to turn her passion into a career. Laura tells the stories of people and projects, communicating values, building trust, and connecting employees and customers alike. After many years as a marketing, communications, and business development professional in the AEC industry, she has learned that when marketing can work in tandem with business development to use a company’s stories to demonstrate what they can do – magic can happen.
Christopher Donahue, AIA, BIM+R
Chris Donahue was an expert at virtual design and construction before most of the industry even knew it existed, having started his journey with BIM as early as 20 years ago. Coming from a background in architecture and engineering, Chris has a designer’s mindset. He understands design at a fundamental level – which is why he is so very good at dissecting it to find potential disruptions to the construction process, and opportunities for cost savings for his clients. As Director of Virtual Design & Construction (VDC) and Building Information Modeling (BIM) Chris uses immersive emerging technologies to provide improved project outcomes, project cost savings, improved regulatory approval and permitting outcomes, lowered risk, and better post-construction facilities management. Chris manages a team of tech professionals who find creative, forward-thinking uses of the most current construction technology to solve even the most complex challenges.
Carey Bradley, EIT
Chris’ right hand man and technology extraordinaire, Carey brings a litany of knowledge to the table regarding virtual design and construction. Touting extensive, hands-on experience as a tradesman in multiple fields, Carey offers a trained eye from the professional perspectives of mechanical, electrical, plumbing, masonry, and more. He is responsible for the creation of EDiS Company’s entire BIM Services process manual, and as such, knows the ins and outs of applying this technology to the real work.
Gregg Perry had been dabbling in wood since his college days, building crude pine furniture and eventually opening a showroom in Mullica Hill, NJ. As his skills and love of 18th period furniture and design increased, he decided to pursue furniture making full time. While doing a year apprenticeship under a master in South Jersey, he opened his first furniture studio in Topton,PA. Perry trained and employed four workers for the next 14 years, quickly becoming in the top tier of 18th. Century reproduction furniture makers in the country; producing a line of 24 pieces in the Philadelphia Chippendale-style in tiger maple which was distributed through dealers in 12 major cities. In 2000 Perry became a certified Horologist while after studying at the British Horological Institute and Watch and Clock Museum. He specialized in the conservation and restoration of 17th to 19th century clocks, watches and scientific instruments.
In 2001 Perry went to Paris, France where he enrolled in a furniture and wooden artifact conservation program at the infamous École Boulle. This program was a master’s degree in combination with the Louvre Museum. While in Paris, Perry also apprenticed under four of the main disciplines in the French restorer’s repertoire — gilding, marquetry, French polishing and sculpting; and also included an apprenticeship in clock restoration with a leading Parisian horologist.
Perry has earned multiple professional certifications and degrees, including: Certification in French marquetry, Certified in UK in Grade 2 and grade 2 Star Historic Preservation of Endangered Buildings. Additionally, Perry has an Advanced degree from Ecole Boulle and the Louvre Museum in Paris in Furniture and Wooden Artifact Conservation and Restoration, A Certificate from West Dean College in the UK in Conservation of Leather, Certified French and Italian gilder and a Certification from Switzerland in enamel conservation.
Gregg Perry has taught wood courses at NYU and was an instructor for ten years at the NAWCC School of Horology, teaching decorative art courses in marquetry, wood carving, Urushi lacquer, gilding and metallurgy.
Today, Gregg Perry operates a unique studio in Alloway, NJ that restores and conserves clocks, their wooden cases and period furniture from the 16th to 19th. Century. He also fabricates replacement historical architectural millwork including doors and windows. In addition he has started not for profits to save historic 18th. Century buildings in declining towns, giving voice to the most fragile objects of art — our historical architecture.
Michael Emmons is Assistant Director and Senior Architectural Historian at the Center for Historic Architecture & Design (CHAD) at the University of Delaware, a research unit that engages in historic preservation projects throughout the Mid-Atlantic and beyond. He also teaches in the Historic Preservation program at UD's Biden School of Public Policy & Administration, including one of the program’s core courses, Theory & Practice. Michael is Preservation Delaware's vice president for New Castle County, and serves on the Education Committee.
Nicky Vann is the Director of Grants and Awards at the National Trust for Historic Preservation, an organization that awarded grants totaling $9.5 million in 2021 to preservation projects across the United States. Nicky joined the National Trust in 2004. Prior to coming to the National Trust, Nicky worked for various women’s organizations overseeing grantmaking and program compliance at Zonta International and Genesis House in Chicago, and the American Association of University Women in Washington, D.C. Nicky was raised outside of Cleveland and currently lives in Washington, DC. She holds a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Megan J. Brown
Megan has worked at the National Park Service for 19 years, starting as a Grants Management Specialist, and then spending 10 years as the Certified Local Government (CLG) Coordinator, and now serves as the Chief of the State, Tribal, Local, Plans & Grants Division (STLPG) located within the Cultural Resources, Partnerships and Science Directorate of the National Park Service in Washington, DC. STLPG is responsible for the management of the Federal Preservation Partnership Program which is supported by grants from the Historic Preservation Fund (HPF). Currently, STLPG awards over $170 million annually to State, Tribal, and local preservation partners for historic preservation projects in their communities. Over 1000 active grants fund annual assistance to States and Tribes, as well as 8 competitive grant programs when funded by Congress that support Underrepresented Communities, African American Civil Rights, Save America’s Treasures, and Historically Black Colleges and Universities. With a staff of 20, the division works hard to provide the outreach and training necessary to enable our partners to carry out the programs outlined by the National Historic Preservation Act and funded by the HPF.
Before joining NPS, Megan worked in the Southwest Office of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, in Fort Worth, Texas, and the State Historic Preservation Office in South Carolina where she managed the State Grant and Federal Tax Incentive programs. Her education includes a Bachelor in Architecture from Auburn University and Master in Historic Preservation from the University of South Carolina. She is an avid equestrian and enjoys time and travel with her family, horses, and friends.
Jeremy Rothwell is a Preservation Delaware Board Member and Secretary
Emily Whaley is an Architectural Historian with the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural
Affairs’ State Historic Preservation Office. Whaley earned a B.A. in Historic Preservation from
the University of Mary Washington. Whaley’s responsibilities at the division include reviewing
nominations and project proposals for the National Register of Historic Places, historic
preservation tax credits, consulting with federal, state and local agencies and applicants on
proposed construction projects; and other preservation planning work. In her free time, she
enjoys volunteering at her local historical society.
Kara Briggs is an Architectural Historian with the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural
Affairs’ State Historic Preservation Office, where she serves as the manager of the State
Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program. Kara holds a master’s degree in Urban Affairs and
Public Policy with a concentration in historic preservation from the University of Delaware,
where she also earned certificates in museum studies and human-subjects training. She holds
a bachelor’s degree in Interior Design from the Savannah College of Art and Design. In
addition to her work at the SHPO, Kara has worked as a cultural resource consultant,
collections manager, research assistant, and exhibit designer, and formerly served as the site
supervisor for the Division’s John Dickinson Plantation. She is the author of “Images of
America: Forty Acres” about the history of this Wilmington neighborhood.
Alexandra Tarantino is an architectural historian and Cultural Resource Specialist with the National Park Service in the Denver Service Center (DSC). Prior to joining the DSC, she worked as an Environmental Specialist at the Delaware Department of Transportation and as a Historic Preservation Specialist at the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. Alex holds a B.A. in Art History and a Certificate in Historic Preservation from Rutgers University, and an M.A. in Historic Preservation from the University of Delaware. During her time at UD, she worked on the Mid-Atlantic Historic Buildings and Landscapes Survey at the Center for Historic Architecture and Design. She has served on Preservation Delaware's Board of Directors since January 2020 and is Kent County Vice President and Chair of the Education Committee.
Alexandra Deutsch, a graduate of Vassar College and the Winterthur Program in American Material Culture, is the John L. and Marjorie P. McGraw Director of Collections at the Winterthur Museum. She leads Winterthur’s Collections Division that includes curatorial, conservation, registration, exhibitions, estate history, interpretation and programming. Prior to arriving at Winterthur in 2019, she was Vice-President of Collections and Interpretation and Chief Curator at the Maryland Center for History and Culture, formerly the Maryland Historical Society and has held positions at the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, Bennington Museum, Chapman Historical Museum and Historic Annapolis Foundations. Her publications include Spectrum of Fashion (2019), Structure and Perspective: David Brewster Explores Maryland’s Social Landscape (2017) and Woman of Two Worlds: Elizabeth Patterson Bonaparte (2016) and she has written and lectured about various topics in American material culture throughout her career with a particular emphasis on women’s and fashion history. During her tenure at Winterthur, she has overseen the museum’s reimagined exhibitions schedule which includes Outside In: Nature-Inspired Design at Winterthur (May 2021 to the present), Jacqueline Kennedy and H.F. du Pont: From Winterthur to the White House (May 2022-January 8, 2022) and Ann Lowe, American Couturier (September 9, 2023-January 7, 2023).
Elaine Rice Bachmann
Elaine Rice Bachmann curated the exhibit, Jacqueline Kennedy and H. F. du Pont: From Winterthur to the White House. Currently Bachmann is the Archivist for the State of Maryland. A graduate of the Winterthur program in Material Culture and the University of Delaware, the topic was the subject of her masters’ thesis. Bachmann co-authored with James Archer Abbott the book entitled Designing Camelot about the Kennedy white house.
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