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Future Proof Museums – Participants

Participants - pilot programme

These organisations applied and were selected for the first Future Proof Museums; below are the biographies of those that took part.

The new cohort of museums taking part will be listed here shortly.
Find out more about the programme here.

Cara Sutherland, Curator
Mental Health Museum

I have been fortunate to have worked in a variety of roles within the cultural sector; all of which have involved working with wonderful collections, inspiring communities and committed colleagues. I am passionate about museums’ impact on social change and using collections to help empower communities.

I look forward to engaging with those taking part in the programme. I believe it will enable me to approach the future of the museum with greater confidence and enthusiasm for change; to see our journey through prepared and ambitious eyes.

Carolyn Dalton, Heritage Services Manager
Doncaster Museum and Art Gallery

I have either worked or volunteered in museums since I was 16 (which is a longer time than I care to contemplate). My training is as a curator and I have worked in Norfolk, Poole and Lancashire on my route to Doncaster where I am now in my third position, moving from Curatorial Manager, to Manager of the Museum & Art Gallery to Heritage Services Manager (with the joining of museums, local studies and archives). I am also interested in the wider museums sector and have been President of the Yorkshire Fed as well as the Museums Association’s Representative for Yorkshire.

Janet Vitmayer, Director
Horniman Museum and Gardens

Janet has worked in UK museums since 1976 at a national, regional and local level. She is driven by a fascination with the power of collections to communicate, inspire and redefine the way we look at the world. Prior to being a CEO her work focused on exhibition curation, learning and interpretation.

Since 1999 she has been CEO of the Horniman Museum and Gardens guiding the Museum through a major transformation including trebling visitor numbers, extending the Museum and redeveloping its 16.5 acres of Gardens. The Horniman now attracts circa 860,000 visits each year and in 2013 was a finalist in the Art Fund’s Museum of the Year, and joint winner of the Telegraph Family Friendly Museum of the Year.

Janice Hayes, Collections, Heritage and Archives Manager
Warrington Museum and Art Gallery, Culture Warrington

I have a wide range of experience across the profession in both local authority and more recently in a charitable trust. I originally entered the museum world in an Education role but subsequently developed experience in Social & Local History curatorship; co-ordinating exhibitions programmes; Community Outreach, managing Front of House operations, successful external fundraising and managing capital projects. As the Principal Museum Officer in Warrington Borough Council’s Neighbourhood and Cultural Services section I was part of the team preparing for outsourcing to Warrington Cultural Trust in partnership with the Pyramid Arts Centre and Parr Hall Concert venue. I’m currently involved in a major application to the HLF to create an integrated heritage hub widening access to the museum, archives and art galleries and ensure the organisation’s sustainability.

Janita Bagshawe, Director
Royal Pavilion and Museums, Brighton and Hove

Janita has over thirty years experience in museums, much of it at the Royal Pavilion and Museums (a multi-site local authority service). Prior to becoming director, she held a number of senior management positions with a range of responsibilities including learning, exhibitions, income generation, sponsorship, operations and fundraising. Previous employment and experience included voluntary work and posts in museum education and teaching in Norfolk, Swindon and Brighton. She is MA rep for the South East, is a Trustee of Culture 24 and is on the steering groups for Brighton and Hove’s Arts & Creative Industries Commission and Women Leaders in Museums Network.

Jeremy Knight, Museum and Heritage Manager
Horsham Museum and Art Gallery

I have worked in museums for over 30 years, including 5 years as a volunteer. In that time I have written and managed 7 HLF projects including redeveloping a museum. Currently involved in collection rationalisation, gallery developments, new art gallery, 20+ temporary exhibitions p.a., museum management etc. Also involved in the wider remit of District Visitor Economy, Arts development and engagement, developer funded public art projects, Community Heritage projects (rescuing and capturing) War Memorials, Reminiscence work etc. Stayed at Horsham for 27 years because it is constantly changing and developing, responding to the new demands and expectations.

Joanne Bartholomew, Chief Executive
Thackray Medical Museum

Joanne Bartholomew leads a team of 25 staff, supported by 8 trustees and 30 volunteers. She is currently leading a £5m redevelopment project to secure investment in the museum’s Grade ii listed building and facilities, and developing a new business model and plan to ensure future sustainability of the museum. Joanne is currently a member of the National Alliance for Museums, Health and Wellbeing steering group, and was Chair of the UK Medical Collections Group subject specialist network from 2012-15. Joanne joined Thackray Medical Museum in 2003 as senior curator, becoming a director in 2012, and CEO in 2014.

Kate Arnold-Forster, Director
Museum of English Rural Life

Kate Arnold-Forster has worked in the museums sector as a volunteer, curator, consultant and director for more than 25 years. Since 2002 she has been responsible for the direction of the Museum of English Rural Life and the strategic development of the University’s museums, archives and special collections, where she has led a major programme of capital re-development and renewal. She is Co-Director of the University’s Centre for Collections-Based Research.

She plays an active role in the wider profession and has held positions on national and regional bodies, including the Designation and Accreditation panels and in advising on governance, strategy and policy. She is Co-Chair of the University Museums Group, a founder committee member of Women Leaders in Museums, a Fellow of the Museums Association and has a longstanding interest in professional development.

Katy Ashton, Director
People’s History Museum

Katy Ashton is Director of the People’s History Museum and has over 15 years experience working in national, local authority and independent museums with a wide range of subjects and collections. Katy’s background is in learning, social justice and citizenship in museums. She is interested in the role of museums in tackling contemporary issues and ideas, focusing on democracy and politics in her current role. Katy has a History Degree, an MA in Museum Studies and is an Associate of the Museums Association. Katy is the Chair of the NWFED and a member of the Women Leaders in Museums Network.

Kevin Moore, Director
National Football Museum

Dr Kevin Moore has been Director of the National Football Museum since the beginning of the project in 1997. He is an experienced museum professional of international stature. He is regularly invited to give papers at museum and academic conferences around the world, and has published a number of major books about museums. Kevin is chair of the Sport in Museums Network, the organisation of the UK’s sports museums, libraries and archives, which is recognised as an important Subject Specialist Network by ACE. He is a Visiting Fellow at the University of Central Lancashire, De Montfort University, Manchester Metropolitan University and a Fellow of the RSA.

Lisa Broadest, Manager, Heritage Services
Clifton Park Museum, Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council

I am the Manager of Heritage Services for Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council, which includes Clifton Park Museum, the York and Lancaster Regimental Museum, Boston Castle, Archives and Local Studies and five additional historic buildings.

Previously I was the Principal Officer, Archives and Local Studies for Rotherham Council and prior to that the Principal Archivist at Doncaster Council. I qualified as an archivist over 15 years ago. I am an active member of the Museums Association, Archives and Records Association as well as within the Yorkshire Medium Museum Services network.

Mary Godwin, Director
Cornwall’s Regimental Museum

Mary’s first museum job was at the Design Museum in London where she was Collections Manager. She then became Curator/Archivist for international corporate business Cable & Wireless plc, where she was also Community Investment Manager.

Mary moved to Cornwall in 1999 to become Director of Porthcurno Telegraph Museum, was awarded Associateship of the Museums Association and became a Trustee of Newlyn Art Gallery. In 2006 she attended the University of East Anglia Museum Leadership course and became the Community Museums Officer for Devon. In 2008 Mary became Director of Lyme Regis Museum and Manager of the Cornwall Museum Development team. In 2011 she moved to Arts Council England as Relationship Manager for Museums covering the South West. Mary has recently been appointed as the first ever Director of Cornwall’s Regimental Museum at Bodmin.

Max Dunbar, Chief Executive
Manchester Jewish Museum

Max Dunbar has been Chief Executive of Manchester Jewish Museum (MJM) for the past 4 years and has recently secured HLF support for a £5million museum extension to house new galleries and new spaces for learning and events. Prior to MJM, Max has worked in a range of museums, galleries and libraries, including Liverpool Record Office, the World Rugby Museum and the National Portrait Gallery. Max also spent 5 years working as a Sporting Memorabilia Specialist at Christie’s Fine Art Auctioneers.

Philippa Rawlinson, Director of Operations/Deputy CEO
Shakespeare Birthplace Trust

Philippa Rawlinson is the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust’s Deputy CEO and Director of Operations. She is responsible for the management and maintenance of the five Shakespeare Houses and Gardens open to the public and heads its commercial arm SBT Trading Ltd. After studying Zoology at Cambridge University Philippa joined Sainsbury’s graduate programme and subsequently held a number of management positions. Philippa later completed a Masters degree in the Conservation of Historic Buildings to facilitate a change to the heritage sector and managed property portfolios for the National Trust for 12 years before moving to SBT in 2013.

Sheila Hennings, Venues and Learning Manager
Hampshire Cultural Trust

Early roles at the Black Country Living Museum and Birmingham Community Museums showed me the affection a venue can hold in its locality, along with its potential to bring history to life for all ages. 7 years as Manager at Cressing Temple, a 13th century heritage site in Essex, allowed me to explore commercial partnerships; hosting food, art, and trade fairs, and to organise living history and seasonal events.

I am an Area Manager for Hampshire Cultural Trust based at the flagship venue Milestones in Basingstoke, which offers a unique indoor living history experience.

Simon Lace, Heritage Services Manager
The Guildhall Museum, Medway Council

I have 30 years experience in the museum sector as an educator, curator and a director in Stockport, Bolton, east and west London, Maidstone and Rochester.

I am currently employed as Heritage Services Manager at Medway Council. I am responsible for Rochester and Upnor Castles; Temple Manor; Eastgate House; the Old Brook Pumping Station; and the Medway Archives. Before that I spent ten years as the Museums’ Manager for Maidstone Council and was responsible for the £4.5million redevelopment of Maidstone Museum.

Simon May, Group Manager: Museums and Libraries
Southend-on-Sea Borough Council

Simon has led the Museum Service in Southend since July 2014, adding Museums to his responsibility for Libraries. Over the past four years the library service has set a 15 year strategy, opened a major new Central Library, The Forum, and undergone two profound service developments introducing self-service and the widespread core use of volunteers. Together these have left the service fit for the next 15 years and sustainable.

Simon has had a steep but enjoyable learning curve with Museums and is looking forward to preparing the service to be sustainable. He is leading on Southend’s major new museum.

Steven Parissien, Director
Compton Verney

Dr Steven Parissien is Director of Compton Verney museum and gallery in Warwickshire. Steven obtained both his undergraduate and doctoral degrees from Oxford University and joined Compton Verney in January 2009. Since then he has steered the gallery through a comprehensive restructure, launched new curatorial and commercial initiatives, and framed the site’s HLF-supported Park Restoration Project.

Steven has written extensively on architectural and cultural history – his 12 books to date range from Regency Style (Phaidon, 1992) to The Comfort of the Past (Paul Holberton, 2015) – is a Visiting Fellow of Kellogg College, Oxford, and Warwick University, and is joint chair of the National Pub Design Awards.

Sue Mackay, Curator
Keswick Museum and Art Gallery

I joined Keswick Museum in January 2014 in the middle of a £2.1m transformational project. The building work was finished but introducing and adapting the completely new business model was yet to begin. I brought with me experience of trust status, self-sufficiency and volunteer workforces within museums from previous recent roles. I have been a collections manager, learning manager and primary school teacher across a career dedicated to community, engagement and heritage.

Tim Desmond, CEO
Galleries of Justice Museum

Since 2006 Tim has been Chief Executive of the Egalitarian Trust whose vision is equal opportunity for all to learn about the law, and consists of the Galleries of Justice Museum in Nottingham and the National Centre for Citizenship and the Law (NCCL). The Trust now also operates at the Royal Courts of Justice in London and Manchester Civil Justice Centre.

He is Chair of East Midlands Museum Service and a Visiting Professor in Heritage Management at Nottingham Trent University.

Picture of Cara Sutherland