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Webinar: Emergency & Disaster Response
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Emergency & Disaster Response

Live Webinar
Wednesday, July 17, 2019
2 - 3:15pm ET




This webinar provides guidance on preparing for and responding to natural and human-caused disasters.

From a leak in a storage space to  building construction across the street to a widespread natural disaster, unplanned for situations are unpredictable. And, importantly, they can happen to any organization.   Such events may leave cultural assets, employees, artists, and even the public vulnerable, and will likely require complex coordinated efforts with first responders, government agencies, private entities, and more.

In our conversation, we’ll discuss questions around:  What is a curator’s role in emergency planning and disaster response? How can we best plan ahead and mitigate potential damage to our exhibitions, collections, or community partnerships? What resources are available to provide support and assist before, during, and in the aftermath? This webinar will provide guidance on how curators can prepare for and respond in such circumstances. Together we’ll garner advice and information about responding to unforeseen situations, with key speakers giving valuable examples of where plans succeeded or failed. 

Emergency & Disaster Response is part of the AAMC Foundation’s webinar series, which offers live online discussions on essential skills, timely issues, and latest discoveries that define the profession of an art curator, and enhance understanding and development in the field. This coming year of webinar topics have been developed around the central theme of the “outward-facing-curator,” dissecting ways in which curators collaborate and engage with audiences internally & externally.


Meet the Speakers
(listed alphabetically)


Barbara Chamberlain, Director of Art Collection Management, AIG Private Client Group

 Barbara is Director of Art Collection Management at AIG Private Client Group. She came to AIG in 2008 with 11 years of collections management experience in retail, corporate and public art. She began her career at a contemporary art gallery in New York City after which she was assistant curator of The FORBES Magazine Collection. Before coming to AIG, Barbara was registrar at the Appleton Museum of Art in Ocala, Florida. Today, she provides collection management, risk management and loss prevention services, and claims assistance for private collections policyholders in the Central and Southeastern U.S. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in art history and psychology from Smith College and Master of Arts degree in museum studies from Johns Hopkins University where she is now an adjunct professor.


Susan Edwards, Executive Director and CEO, Frist Art Museum

Susan Edwards has served as Executive Director and CEO of the Frist Art Museum in Nashville, Tennessee, since 2004. During her tenure, the Frist was awarded accreditation by the American Alliance of Museums (AAM) and has presented more than two hundred exhibitions. Edwards earned BA and MA degrees at the University of South Carolina and a Ph.D. from the City University of New York (CUNY) Graduate Center. She is an acknowledged expert in American art and photography, has organized exhibitions, published and lectured widely on modern and contemporary artists, material culture, and photography. She has also taught these subjects at New York University, Queens College/CUNY, School of Visual Arts, and Vanderbilt University. She has published numerous essays for exhibition catalogues as well as articles in national and international journals. She is a member of the Association of Art Museum Directors, AAM, International Council of Museums, Art Table, and the College Art Association. She currently serves on the advisory boards of the Bogliasco Foundation, Harvard Art Museum Collections Committee, Alfred Stieglitz Advisory Committee (Crystal Bridges/Fisk University) and Historic Nashville.


Rebecca Kennedy, Collections Care Specialist and Founder, Curae Collections Care, LLC

While working at the Smithsonian Institution for 11 years as a Collections Manager and Preservation Specialist Rebecca Kennedy was tasked with implementing institution-wide trainings on emergency preparedness and response. In 2016, she received a certification in First Aid to Cultural Heritage in Times of Crisis from ICCROM, pushing her skills in emergency response. Rebecca is Chair Emeritus of the American Institute for Conservation’s Emergency Committee and is on the steering committee for the DC Alliance for Response. She is also a Professional Associate (PA) of the AIC.


Daniel Odess, Head of the Science and Research Program and Disaster Response Coordinator for Cultural Resources, National Parks Service

Dr. Daniel Odess is head of the Science and Research Program and Disaster Response Coordinator for Cultural Resources with the National Park Service. He works on an array of issues related to science and historic preservation, including disaster preparedness, response, and recovery, climate change adaptation, large landscape conservation, and tribal consultation. He served as the Historic Properties Specialist leading the effort to protect cultural resources on behalf of the U.S. Coast Guard for the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Response. Prior to joining NPS, he was associate professor and curator of archaeology at the University of Alaska Museum of the North.


Jamaal B. Sheats, Director and Curator, Fisk University Galleries; Assistant Professor, Fisk University; Moderator

Through his dual positions at Fisk University Jamaal B. Sheats is able to work with students, faculty, and the community in ways that integrate his expertise and passion for the arts, education, and mentorship. At the Galleries, Sheats has curated over 15 art exhibitions, welcomed over 16,000 visitors, created a Fellowship for post-doctoral scholars, and instituted a continuous pipeline of charitable giving through an annual Friends of the Gallery Campaign. In 2017, Sheats led efforts to secure funding from the Ford Foundation and Walton Family Foundation to establish the Fisk University Museum Leadership Program, a 2-year certificate program that aims to diversify art museum leadership. Sheats is a board member of the Arts & Business Council, HBCU Alliance of Museums and Galleries, and Association of Academic Museum & Galleries. He obtained his Bachelor of Arts degree in Art from Fisk University and a Master of Fine Arts degree with a concentration in Studio Art from the School of the Museum of Fine Art, Boston and Tufts University.


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