Sustaining Places

Resources for small museums and historic sites

Workshop News & Registration

Upcoming Workshops



Is your board of trustees sinking under the challenge of meeting the needs of your museum, historical society or historic house? Do your meetings feel like time spent rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic? You need BOARD S.O.S!, a two-part workshop that will help you diagnose your board’s strengths and weaknesses and develop realistic strategies for change.

Part 1: Steer Clear of the Iceberg will help you

  • understand your board’s legal, ethical and operational obligations as stewards of cultural heritage;
  • diagnose your challenges and avoid common fallacies about successful boards of trustees;
  • create an effective board structure and build leadership in the board;
  • develop strategies for targeted recruitment and training; and
  • help you move from a “working” board to a “governing” board.

Part 2 : Launching the Lifeboats and Setting a Course for Smooth(er) Sailing will help you

  • set priorities and create strategies for growing a more informed and functional board of trustees;
  • develop strategies for getting the board member commitment that you need to achieve your museum’s mission;
  • help you set realistic expectations for board fundraising in support of your organization; and
  • get your board paperwork in order, including clearly written trustee position descriptions, service agreements, and orientation materials.

There will be plenty of time for conversation with the workshop leaders, and you’ll meet others who face similar challenges. As with all Sustaining Places workshops, you’ll receive a wealth of helpful materials to carry back to your organization. Attendance is limited to 15.


Oct. 27 and  Nov. 10, 2014DMA Logo
10 a.m. to 3 p.m.


Read House & Gardens
42 The Strand
New Castle, DE 19720

Tri-State Coalition of Historic Places Member OR Delaware Museum Association Member: $30
Non-Member (Individual): $60
Non-Member (Institution): $70

Expert Instructors:
Kimberly Andrews (Shofuso Japanese House and Gardens)

Previously a preservation consultant to over fifty cultural heritage organizations, Kim Andrews has been Executive Director of Shofuso Japanese House and Garden since 2010, overseeing comprehensive strategic planning and implementation while raising almost $1 million for capital projects and capacity-building. Shofuso’s board has undergone a complete rebirth in this time. Kim is also a founding board member and treasurer of the North American Japanese Garden Association, a current board member of the Japan America Society of Greater Philadelphia, and a former board member of three other nonprofits.

Armand Battisti (Independent development and fundraising consultant)

Armand Battisti’s 35-year career in development includes, most recently, positions at the Winterthur Museum and the University of Delaware.  An expert on working with boards of trustees on fundraising, Armand has directed or participated in four capital campaigns and has raised numerous major gifts, mostly from individuals.   After retiring from the university, Armand started his own fundraising consulting business in 2013, serving museum and social non-profit organizations in our region.  He also teaches Fundraising Principles for the Museum Studies Program at the University of Delaware.


REGISTRATION CLOSED: Taming Your Treasures: Collections Management for Beginners

SPencer With Net, LegsDo your collections need to be catalogued? Do you want to train an intern or volunteer to get started on that neglected inventorying project? Is your small museum or historic site considering using museum software such as PastPerfect?

If you answered “yes” to just one of these questions, then this workshop is for you!

This hands-on, two-session workshop will teach you best practices in handling, describing, photographing, labeling, and keeping track of your museum’s treasures. After cataloguing a small sampling of your collections after the first session, on the second meeting day, you will share your work and what you learned with the other participants. You will receive feedback on strategizing how to plan your museum’s cataloguing or inventorying project. You will also receive hands-on training with PastPerfect Museum Software. After you complete this workshop, you will walk away with tools for gaining intellectual control over your collection so that you and your visitors will be able to work with and learn from your museum’s treasures today and in the future.

This workshop, which will emphasize three-dimensional collections, is designed for beginners and is suitable for (but not limited to):

  • Interns or non-collections staff or volunteers who have never catalogued, inventoried, or labeled collections objects but will in the future
  • Board members or non-collection staff or volunteers who have never catalogued, inventoried, or labeled collections objects but want to learn more about best practices in collections management
  • Professional or volunteer staff who assess and plan for future cataloguing and inventorying projects
  • Professional or volunteer staff considering implementing software such as PastPerfect in the near future to digitize their collections records


Nov. 3 and 17, 2014 (Round II – this a repeat of the two-day workshop that was offered in Sept.)
10 a.m. to 3 p.m.


Hale-Byrnes House (Nov. 3)
606 Stanton-Christiana Rd.
Newark, DE 19713

University of Delaware History Department (Nov. 17)
203 Munroe Hall
Newark, DE 19716

Tri-State Coalition of Historic Places Member: $30
Non-Member (Individual): $60
Non-Member (Institution): $70

Expert Instructors:
Nicole Belolan (Sustaining Places)
Brian Gomez (PastPerfect Software)

Be sure to subscribe to our mailing list for updates and registration information.



Both workshops have been filled. Check back for information about our upcoming repeat-workshop on board development.

Step 1: Fill out the form below and indicate which workshop you would like to attend. This will hold your place in the workshop, and we will confirm receipt of your information.  Your registration will be complete once we receive your form (see PDF below) and payment.

Step 2:

Fill out a registration form and mail it with your check to:

Sustaining Places Workshops
Museum Studies Program
University of Delaware
77 East Main Street
Newark, DE 19716

Past Workshops

Check out the titles and some resources from the previous workshops that Sustaining Places has offered.

Mailing Address

University of Delaware
Museum Studies Program, Sustaining Places
77 E. Main St.
Newark, DE 19711