Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Voters reject Access for All by narrow margin
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Categories: News

With all but 9,000 ballots counted at King County Elections headquarters, Access for All campaign manager Jack Sorensen on Monday, August 7, officially announced that the campaign for King County Proposition One has conceded defeat.

“With the ballots that have been counted since election day, we made it to 49 percent,” Sorensen said, “…given how few are left to be counted we won’t be able close the gap in the coming days.”

He went on to say that campaign workers and supporters had a lot to be proud of, from completing hundreds of volunteer shifts, to mobilizing dozens of organizations and phone banking tens of thousands of voters.

“[W]e introduced thousands of voters to the importance of arts, science and heritage programs — many of whom had never thought about a cultural access program before. That’s a victory in itself,” Sorensen said.

The 4Culture Board also has responded to the loss, noting that Prop One required the creation and implementation of geographic and equity plans to guide the distribution of funds.

“Even though the measure did not pass, we recognize the necessity of these plans and pledge to move forward with work on them,” the Board said in a statement.

Sorensen encouraged Access for All supporters to continue working for the principles Proposition One espoused. “As I’ve said, we didn’t give up in Olympia, we didn’t give up in the King County Council, and we’re not giving up today.”


AKCHO membership benefit – access to AASLH conference online
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Categories: News

This year, as in previous years, AKCHO is pleased to provide its members in good standing with a valuable professional development opportunity — free access to the online sessions that are being offered as part of the annual meeting of the American Association for State and Local History.

While the annual meeting is being held in Austin, Texas, from September 6-9, our members can attend many of the sessions in real time from the comfort of their own computers at home or at work.

Here’s the line-up of sessions that are available to you:

Thursday, September 7
Field Services Alliance Tips: Caring for Collections on a Budget
8-9:15 AM
Every museum works within the confines of a budget. We all know the best practices and what we should do for our organizations, but the question stopping us is usually: How? Join us for a series of tips and tricks addressing budget-friendly practices for collections care, exhibition, and disaster planning.
Karen DePauw, Coordinator, Local History Services, Indiana Historical Society

Historic Preservation Never Ends: Practical Maintenance for Your Historic Buildings
9:30-10:45 AM
A historic building expresses the tangible past like few other artifacts can-but needs its own collections care. Learn proper preservation stewardship for your museum: the basics of routine maintenance, working with construction professionals, the guiding ideas of preservation and how to inform stakeholders about the processes and costs involved.
Evelyn Montgomery, Director of Collections, Exhibits and Preservation, Dallas Heritage Village

Engaging Programs = Engaging Communities?
Noon-1:15 PM
History museums and historic sites are always part of a community, but what makes a community want to engage with it? This session will explore three different approaches as well as develop a set of practical steps to help you engage more effectively with your local community.
Max A. van Balgooy, President, Engaging Places LLC

Friday, September 8
Innovative Audience Engagement From Outside the Museum Bubble
8-9:15 AM
What techniques and practices from outside the “museum bubble” inspire us to push the boundaries of audience engagement? After reviewing innovative experiences from “non-museum” organizations that meaningfully connect audiences and content, we’ll use creative thinking strategies to brainstorm intersections with museum work and techniques our field might adapt or borrow

Seeking Absent Voices: Inclusion and Relevance; Examples, Tools, and a Conversation
9:30-10:45 AM
Your institution is missing its full potential. Be motivated to build relationships in your communities and to collect and convey the stories you’re missing. Observe the value of digging deeper. Learn tools for meaningful engagement. And be forewarned of challenges you will face if you open this door.
Steve Boyd-Smith, Manager of Interpretation and Design, 106 Group

The Art of Saying “No”: Declining Collections Gifts Gracefully
Noon-1:15 PM 
Saying “no” to potential donations is a difficult part of collections work. Yet, this skill is essential to maintaining relevance and sustainability. Participants will learn how to say “no” gracefully, why a collections policy is their ally and how to suggest alternative homes for the items.
Aimee E. Newell, Ph.D., Executive Director, Luzerne County Historical Society

If you are interested in taking advantage of this benefit personally, or in having your staff or volunteers participate in these sessions, please contact Barbara McMichael at and she will forward the login information to you when it becomes available.


Gannis to helm EHC
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Categories: News

Eastside Heritage Center (EHC) has announced the selection of Josh Gannis as its next Executive Director. The selection was made after nine months of extensive strategic planning and regional searching. Starting at his new position on August 2, Gannis will lead EHC in its mission to preserve and share the history of East King County with the community. 

Gannis comes to EHC with more than 13 years of experience in both large and small scale education, and culturally focused non-profit organizations. Most recently, he worked as Youth Education Manager for The Mountaineers and prior to that he was the Program Director at the Mercer Slough Environmental Education Center for their partnership program with the Pacific Science Center and City of Bellevue.  For over seven years, he served as the Associate Director of the Crissy Field Center of the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy, where he spearheaded a nationally acclaimed program designed to engage underserved residents of the San Francisco Bay community with the natural and cultural resources of the National Park. His work helped the National Park Service in the Pacific Region create more inclusive programming and outreach strategies.

Gannis has a B.A. degree in History from Central Connecticut State University, and a Master’s in U.S. Constitutional History from San Francisco State University. Upon assuming his new position, he can be contacted at

“EHC remains very grateful for the eleven years that Heather Trescases was our Executive Director,” Board President Rick Carlson said, “and we are excited as we look to the future, with Josh as our new Executive Director.  Additionally, we believe that our new trustees, Mike Johnson, Jerry O’Day and Bruce Morgan will add additional depth and support for EHC’s growth.”

Eastside Heritage Center maintains and preserves the largest collection of East King County based heritage. With over 60,000 artifacts, photos and archival materials in their collection, the organization is focused on sharing this collection through outreach, exhibits, presentations, and a wide variety of educational programs. 


AKCHO Board report – July 2017
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Categories: News

At its July meeting, AKCHO Board members focused on efforts to support Proposition One (“Access for All”) in the weeks leading up to the August 1 primary. Board members were unanimous in endorsing the measure earlier this year and now are asking all AKCHO members to join in actively supporting the passage of this .1% county-wide sales tax on non–essential items.

If approved by voters, Access for All would fund non-profit heritage, arts, and science organizations to increase cultural equity and access programs over a 7-year period. The tax would be expected to produce approximately $68,000,000 in 2018, and funding would be distributed by 4Culture. Of special interest to many AKCHO members, $4.5 million would be set aside to fund “community heritage organizations” in King County council districts that currently have no Regional Cultural Organization (organizations that have annual revenues over $1,250,000 and annual attendance over 50,000).

In other business, Board members considered funding options for operating expenses for the second half of 2017 and beyond. Among the suggestions raised were an auction (either held online or at one of AKCHO’s annual events), an increase in membership dues, and/or a more robust effort in soliciting grants and donations. Decisions on these options will be announced in the fall. The Board welcomes feedback from AKCHO members – please direct comments and suggestions to

Finally, there are a couple of open seats on the Board and current Board members discussed recruitment efforts and the particular demographic, geographic and skill set objectives they hope to meet in filling the positions. If you are interested in learning more about these positions, Alice Stenstrom is overseeing Board recruitment. Contact her at


Museum of Flight leadership to transition
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Categories: News
Museum of Flight President and CEO Doug King has announced that he will step down as leader of that organization, effective August 15. King will stay on as a consultant to the Museum and will assist with the transition as well as handling a variety of external assignments. The Museum’s current Executive Vice President, Matt Hayes, will take over as President and CEO. 

 “This is a good time to make this change,” said King, who took on his dual roles at the Museum seven years ago. Among his accomplishments, he noted the campaign to raise funds for multiple projects including the building of the Aviation Pavilion to cover much of the Museum’s large aircraft collection, and innovative new educational programs. King also spearheaded the restructuring of staff assignments and an ongoing, long-range planning process.  

Anne Simpson, chairwoman of the Museum’s Board of Trustees, lauded King’s “exemplary” leadership, citing the success of the Museum’s “Inspiration Begins Here” campaign as an example. She noted that he will be staying on during this transition time to continue his active role with the current Access for All campaign and to promote the Museum’s Aviation Learning Centers.

Matt Hayes will become President and CEO of the Museum of Flight in mid-August.

Matt Hayes was the unanimous choice of the Executive Committee and the Board of Trustees to become King’s successor. A lifelong devotee of aviation and history, Hayes soloed an airplane by the time he was 16 and before he got his driver’s license. Hayes joined the Museum as a volunteer in 2000, working to restore a World War II B-17 bomber. He has been the Museum’s Chief Financial Officer since 2010 and in January of this year was named Executive Vice President.



Heritage Advisor is published by the Association of King County Historical Organizations as a service to members and those who support its mission. We update our website continually throughout the month, and on the first of every month we e-mail a condensed version of Heritage Advisor to our mailing list – you can subscribe to this service by filling out the requested information in the right sidebar on this page.

AKCHO was established in 1977 to encourage cooperation among historical organizations; promote and encourage the study and preservation of the history and heritage of King County through member organizations, individual members, and the community they serve; and support such preservation efforts through public awareness and understanding of legislative issues.

The Heritage Advisor welcomes submissions of news items, calendar items, and opinion columns from AKCHO members, HA subscribers, and readers. Articles are limited to 300 words and they should have a strong relevance to historic preservation and heritage issues in King County, Washington. Submission of an article does not guarantee publication. AKCHO does not pay for published submissions. All articles are subject to review by AKCHO staff. Please send your article within the body of an email (no attachments, please) to

AKCHO welcomes new members year round. Individual memberships are $15. Organization memberships are $35. Join more than 150 individuals and organizations supporting heritage work and historic preservation in King County. For more information and an application form, visit


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AKCHO was established to encourage cooperation among historical organizations and to promote and encourage the study and preservation of the history and heritage of King County through member organizations, individual members, and the community they serve, and to support such preservation efforts through public awareness and understanding of legislative issues.

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Twilight Tour of Novelty Cemetery Friday, August 25, 2017 at 7 p.m. Where: Novelty Cemetery just south of Duvall, WA Some prominent Duvall residents that are buried at the Novelty Cemetery will come...

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