From the Director's Desk - March News

March 23
A Note from John Mayer, Executive Director

One Year Ago...

My first day working for the museum was March 2, 2016.  (You might find a picture of me on this website...I'm at my new desk with some miscellaneous items behind me, a little unsure what to do first.) It has been a very full year and interesting to look back - we have accomplished much.

My greatest satisfaction is in the way an organization is taking form.  This "news" does not make the headlines - but it is so important for our future.  Here are a few things to recognize -

The Board of Directors work well together and are dedicated to the museum.

There are ten volunteer members of the Board.  They meet monthly, are all part of at least one of our four committees (Program, Collections, Development, Finance).  Gradually our standards and routines are building more and more capacity.

The Strategic Plan is guiding our progress.

In September we approved a revised mission statement ("Champion the history of Amesbury's industry and people") and three goals - to find a location, to develop new programs, and to work to high professional standards.  I see steady progress towards each of these.  Most notably with our program plans.  There are many new and exciting projects in the works.

We are addressing fundamental museum issues.

Improving storage and cataloging our collection of carriages and sleighs will establish standards for acquiring more objects, and this will directly influence future exhibits and programs.  This small project - funded by MASS Humanities - will provide direction to our work with historic artifacts of all types.  Museums are places for objects, this is a critical initiative.

Gradually we are expanding our base of financial support.

In February, the Board created an agency fund with the Essex County Community Foundation - in effect, we established an endowment.  We did not have resources available to make more than a minimum investment in this fund.  But we did it, and we are hopeful this will become a solid foundation for our future.

We'll need to keep at this through membership (don't forget to renew yours!), grants, sponsorship and the like.  

The Community has been extremely supportive.

Over this past year, I have met so many wonderful people.  The interest and support from all of you says much about our opportunity to build a first-class organization for Amesbury.

Here is to another exciting year in 2018!

As always - do not hesitate to share your thoughts.  Thank you for your support and I hope to see you at our upcoming events - Monday, April 3 at Crave for "History on Tap", and on Thursday, April 13 at Amesbury City Hall for guest speaker Philip Winn speaking about placemaking in Amesbury.  Visit our Facebook page or our Calendar page for details. 

John Mayer, Executive Director 

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