Professional Development Conversation: Building Your Future in a Changing Museum World

  • On Wednesday, September 29, 2021, the Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM) hosted a virtual professional development conversation featuring Lonnie G. Bunch III, secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, Stephanie Stebich, the Margaret and Terry Stent Director of SAAM, and Smithsonian museum professionals from a variety of disciplines and backgrounds. 

    Museums are powered by professionals with wide-ranging backgrounds—from historians and scientists to accountants, attorneys, computer programmers, and graphic designers. During this engaging virtual conversation, Smithsonian staff discussed the changing landscape of the museum field and the need for greater diversity among professional staff. The program also highlighted the unique career paths staff took and offered advice and guidance to aspiring museum professionals.

    Speakers Include: 
    - Lonnie G. Bunch III, Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution
    - Stephanie Stebich, Margaret and Terry Stent Director of the Smithsonian American Art Museum
    - Daniel Finn, Media Conservator, Smithsonian American Art Museum
    - Ashawna Franklin, Assistant Docent Coordinator, Smithsonian American Art Museum 
    - Virginia Thaxton, Horticulturist, Smithsonian Gardens 
    - Grace Lopez, Exhibits Graphic Designer, Smithsonian American Art Museum 
    - Karen Siatras, Senior Designer, Smithsonian American Art Museum