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Confronting a Problematic Legacy

90-minute session

Location: Hilton Albany, Governor E

Day/Time: Sunday, April 7 // 1 - 2:30 PM

About: As caretakers of the Bush House Museum, the Salem Art Association has a special responsibility to look closely at the historical record and, when evidence of oppression or racism comes to light, to acknowledge wrongdoings in an honest and upfront manner.  And yet, simply condemning past racism is not enough. At SAA, we believe in the power of art to not only educate, entertain, delight, and dazzle, but to simultaneously interrogate, stimulate, and challenge. With these goals in mind, our team is re-imagining and re-inventing our programming and our curatorial work, particularly as it relates to the intersection of contemporary art and historical sites. In our talk, we will share some of the history surrounding this house and then discuss our process for making change, including issues such as defining community, sharing power, and working with artists.

In New York State, New York State Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation invested $20 million for the renovation of Philipse Manor State Historic Site buildings, grounds, and a new permanent exhibition with the goal to secure the structure and reinterpret the Manor's history to help visitors better understand the complex relationships that took place at the Manor from its construction during the Dutch Colonial period to the American Revolution and beyond. 


Tammy Jo Wilson, Director of Bush House Museum Exhibits & Programming, Bush House Museum, Salem, Oregon

Tammy Jo Wilson is a black female artist and curator residing just south of Portland, Oregon in historic Oregon City. She received her BFA from the Pacific Northwest College of Art and her MFA from San Jose State University. She has exhibited her work nationally and was awarded the Leland Ironworks Gold Spot Artist Residency in 2017. That same year, Wilson and her husband artist Owen Premore co-founded the arts organization Art in Oregon (AiO). This statewide 501c(3) non-profit works to foster culturally rich regional communities through partnerships, advocacy, and investment in artists, businesses, educational spaces, and community spaces. AiO believes in building and sustaining art patronage through pride in Oregon artists and pride in art ownership. Additionally, she works in the art department at Lewis & Clark College as the Visual Arts & Technology Program Manager.

Lavada Nahon, Interpreter of African American History, New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation

Lavada Nahon is a cultural and culinary historian with 30 years public history experience. She focuses on New Netherland and New York, 17 th through 19 th centuries, specifically, the lives and cultures of Africans and their descendants, enslaved and free. Lavada is also the first Interpreter of African American History for New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, Bureau of Historic Sites. A position she has held for five years. She has worked a wide variety of historic sites and organizations around the tri-state region, and is a noted hearth cook and teacher. Her mission is to bring history to life by giving presence to the Africans and people of African descent enslaved and free, in New Netherland and New York in whatever way possible.

Michael Lord, Historic Site Manager, Philipse Manor Hall Site

Michael A. Lord is the Site Director at Philipse Manor Hall State Historic Site in Yonkers, NY. He is a public historian with over thirty years of experience in program development,interpretive planning, museum education, and historic site management. Michael’s primary tasks have been to develop and implement engaging site interpretations designed to explore new perspectives on the past. A graduate of Amherst College with degrees in History and Black Studies, he has worked and consulted at numerous historic sites and museums. By opening conversations about the issues, events, and individuals surrounding colonial enslavement, Michael shows visitors how history can be used as a tool for understanding the present.

Conference Cancellation Policy

If for any reason, MANY cancels the conference, we will issue you a full refund. 

If you cancel your registration before Monday April 1, that request must be made in writing via email to We will refund you the full amount of your registration, minus a $45 administrative fee. 

Refunds requested after April 1 will not be granted, including requests made based on absence due to illness, late arrival and/or weather conditions. No refunds will be issued on special event tickets at any point due to restaurants and caterers requiring payment in advance.

Special event ticket purchases are non-refundable; restaurants and caterers require payment in advance. you are welcome to give or sell them to a colleague attending the conference. Please notify MANY staff in advance of the conference regarding any transfer of special event tickets. 

Please see your hotel confirmation email for your individual hotel reservation cancellation policy. 

Video/Photography Policy

By registering for and attending our Annual Conference "Giving Voice to Value" you grant the Museum Association of New York (MANY) and its authorized representatives permission to film, photograph, or otherwise record your participation in the conference and associated special events.

You further agree that such images, photographs, and recordings may be used by MANY without your prior approval in any form and for any lawful purpose including, without limitation, promoting MANY. Such use will not entitle you to any credit or compensation.

You release MANY, its officers, and employees from any liability connected with the use of any image, photograph, or recording taken during MANY's Annual Conference and associated special events.

Conference Code of Conduct

The Museum Association of New York (MANY) is dedicated to providing a safe, inclusive, and welcoming conference experience for all participants. All attendees are expected to follow this Code of Conduct, which applies to all pre-conference workshops, concurrent sessions, special events, and capstone experiences.

Compliance with the Code of Conduct is expected from all conference participants; including, but not limited to, attendees, speakers, staff, organizers, contractors, volunteers, exhibitors, and sponsors. Read more.

The Museum Association of New York helps shape a better future for museums and museum professionals by uplifting best practices and building organizational capacity through advocacy, training, and networking opportunities.

Museum Association of New York is a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit organization. 

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