CAJM 2014: Retreat/Forward
CONNECTING TO COMMUNITIES IN CHANGING TIMES
- See to left: A variety of conference presentations and reading lists.
CAJM's 2014 national gathering, Retreat/Forward: Connecting to Communities in Changing Times, took place March 23-25, 2014 in the idyllic setting of the Bon Secours Retreat and Conference Center near Baltimore, MD. Over two and a half stimulating, focused, and fun days participants reflected on current cultural trends, the state of the Jewish museum field, strategies for strengthening our institutions - and CAJM itself. Balancing the theoretical and the practical, the retreat shifted our customary ratio of presentation and conversation, placing new emphasis on dialogue, breakout sessions, and small group discussions.
Avi Decter, CAJM's new Board Chair, Managing Director of History Now, and former Director of the Jewish Museum of Maryland, and Zachary Levine, Curator at the Jewish Historical Society of Greater Washington, served as Co-Chairs for Retreat/Forward. Marvin Pinkert, Executive Director of the Jewish Museum of Maryland and former Director of the National Archives Experience, was Host Chair.
Presenters and session leaders shared information and perspectives on the arrival of participatory culture and the emergence of new learning trends; changing audiences and audience expectations; new norms for civic/community engagement; and evolution within Jewish communities.
They included Ford W. Bell, President of the American Alliance of Museums; Marsha Semmel, former Acting Director of the Federal Institute of Museum and Library Services; Steven M. Cohen, advisor to the Pew Research Center study, "A Portrait of Jewish Americans," and Research Professor of Jewish Social Policy, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion; Liz Lerman, MacArthur Fellow and founder of Liz Lerman Dance; Mary Alexander, Director of the Museum Advancement Program at the Maryland Historical Trust; Lisa Eisen, National Director of the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation; Laura Schiavo, Assistant Professor of Museum Studies at The George Washington University; and Gary Vikan, former Director of the The Walters Art Museum.
Preeminent national consultants participating included Richard Evans, President of EmcArts; Randi Korn, President of Randi Korn & Associates; Peter Linett, Chairman and Chief Idea Officer of Slover Linett Audience Research; and Katherine Prince, Senior Director of Strategic Foresight at KnowledgeWorks.
Other colleagues serving as panelists were Aleisa Fishman of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Michelle DelCarlo from the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History, Susan Bronson, Executive Director of the Yiddish Book Center, Barbara Schaffer Bacon, co-director of Animating Democracy, Benjamin Filene, Associate Professor and Director of Public History at The University of North Carolina, and Rabbi Daniel G. Zemel.
See full bios for all of the presenters.