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Understanding Place: Relationship Building with Indigenous Communities

75-minute session

Location: Hilton Albany, Kelsey

Day/Time: Monday, April 8 // 9:15 - 10:30 AM

About: Are you interested in building or strengthening your organization’s relationships with local Indigenous communities? In this session, the Long Island Children’s Museum, Denise Silva-Dennis of the Shinnecock Nation, and Allison McGovern, an Anthropological Archaeologist discuss the ways in which they, and others, collaborated to make connections, deepen cultural understanding and share learning. Value is given voice through authentic relationship building, listening and collaboration. Discover ways in which your organization can further your connections.


Jeanmarie Walsh Mansfield, Director of Special Projects & Community Initiatives, Long Island Children's Museum

Walsh Mansfield is a certified elementary and art teacher with a BFA in Fine Arts from RISD and a Master's of Arts in Education from Bennington College. At Long Island Children’s Museum for 19 years, Walsh Mansfield oversees community outreach initiatives, visual arts exhibits and programming and is Co-Chair of the Museums DEAI Committee.

Denise "Weetahmoe" Silva-Dennis, Educator and Artist, Shinnecock Nation

Denise “Weetahmoe” Silva-Dennis (Shinnecock/Hassanamisco-Nipmuc) Dennis is an educator and artist with significant expertise in Shinnecock culture, history, matrilineal society, stories & legends. Dennis sits on the boards of the Niamuck Land Trust, Shinnecock Kelp Farmers, Graves Protection Warrior Society, Hampton Community Outreach Boards and the Peconic Land Trust. Dennis appears in "A is for Arts and Crafts" Episode 5405: Sesame Street Self-Portraits, facilitating a Talking Stick workshop at the Shinnecock Boys and Girls Club.

Allison McGovern, PHD, Anthropological Archaeologist, Suffolk County Vanderbilt Museum

McGovern is a consulting anthropological archaeologist and Associate Executive Director of the Suffolk County Vanderbilt Museum. Her research integrates archaeology with historical research methods, public engagement, planning, and historic preservation advocacy. She is active in professional service as a member of the Professional Archaeologists of New York City, an elected Board member of the New York Archaeological Council, a member of the Suffolk County Parks Historic Trust Committee, various local preservation and historical societies.

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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