Back from AASLH with Flashes of Leadership Inspiration

Admittedly, we’ve been back for more than a week, but it takes a while to process a meeting as big as AASLH’s annual event. Here, in no particular order, are some take aways from our three-day adventure:

  • Minneapolis is a pretty cool place. As is St. Paul.
  • We were impressed by the Minnesota History Center and the Walker Art Center.  In both institutions, their commitment to diversity showed big time.
  • We really liked MHC’s insistence that museums need to meet teachers where they are–time starved and over-worked–and “curate” the vast field of history for them.
  • We really liked the way Dina Bailey reinforced the notion of leading from the bottom up by saying that leadership is like sparks around a room–that every time a staff member raises a hand, volunteers for a project or takes part in discussion, they are leading.
  • We got a lump in our throats listening to Ryan Spencer speak from his heart about being a servant leader and his devotion to museum stewardship.
  • We loved hearing a group of museum women quote A. A. Milne while encouraging each other to be braver, smarter, stronger.
  • We applaud members of AASLH’s program committee who are thinking about a 2015 session on “Leading Well, Leaving Well,” so discussion will start on how to leave while you’re at your best whether you’re 40 and moving on or 65 and bowing out.
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