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Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Over-the-Rhine Museum Hires Director of Museum Administration

New Director of Museum Administration Donna Harris is the first full-time staff member at the Over-the-Rhine Museum

Donna Harris has been named the director of museum administration for the Over-the-Rhine Museum, becoming the first full-time employee for the previously all-volunteer organization devoted to promoting Cincinnati history in the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood.

The hiring of Harris, who has served with the Ohio History Service Corps assisting local history museums in efforts to build capacity, will bring the museum’s efforts and goal to open a permanent home at 3 West McMicken Street to a new level, said museum founder and current Vice Chair Anne Steinert.

“We are extremely excited to have Donna on board. She brings the perfect combination of skills to move our emerging organization forward...She will increase our capacity for fundraising, interpretive planning, and other large projects as we move to create a bricks-and-mortar urban history museum in Over-the-Rhine,” Steinert said.

At the Ohio History Service Corps, based at the Cincinnati Art Museum, Harris’ duties included designing evaluation strategies, facilitating strategic plans and developing policy for a variety of museums in the Cincinnati area. The Ohio History Service Corps is an AmeriCorps program.

Harris brings with her more than 20 years of non-profit experience. She has worked with both government agencies and community-based organizations developing programs, writing grants and conducting evaluations. She holds a BA in psychology from the University of Central Florida, an MS in health promotion from Mississippi State, and a certificate in museum studies from Northwestern University.

Her position is funded by the George and Margaret McLane Foundation, a Cincinnati-based foundation committed to building community and improving people's lives by supporting organizations that strive to enrich people’s lives through creative arts and the humanities.

The Over-the-Rhine Museum’s mission is to “inspire understanding and respect for the people who have created and lived in Cincinnati’s historic Over-the-Rhine neighborhood by working with visitors and community members to uncover, present, and preserve their stories in an immersive experience.”

“I am excited to be working with the museum and looking forward to supporting them in preserving and sharing the stories of Over-the-Rhine,” Harris said.

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