Alcione is a museum research specialist at the Anacostia Community Museum and the curator of the 2010-2011 exhibit Word Shout Song: Lorenzo Dow Turner Connecting Communities through Language. She spent 27 years working at the World Bank as a researcher and librarian while maintaining a parallel career as an independent scholar. She first started working at the museum as a volunteer in 2006, then received a contract in 2008 to work on the Turner exhibit and finally was hired on a permanent basis in 2009. She has published on the history of the Black Seminoles and also on the history of Afro-Brazilians who returned to West Africa in the 19th century. She will also be involved in researching the changes that happened in the Washington, D.C. area due to the Civil War. The research will look into the population shifts that changed Washington, D.C. from a small Southern town into a metropolis.
Ariana Curtis, PhD, is the Curator of Latino Studies at the Anacostia Community Museum. She conducts research, plans exhibitions and programs, and develops collections as related to various aspects of Latino experiences. She is currently working on projects that bring multitiered engagements and partnerships to the museum, including a symposium and publication, a Smithsonian-wide research project, Latino-related collections development, and multiple exhibitions. She received her BA from Duke University and her MA and Ph.D. from American University. Her research specialties are racial constructions in the U.S.; Latino urban experiences; Blackness in U.S., Latin America, and the Caribbean; African Diaspora; urban immigration/migrations; and neoliberalism/globalization. Email Ariana at CurtisA@si.edu.
Joshua Gorman, Ph.D serves as ACM collections manager. He manages the access, care and preservation of museum object and archival collections. He has an enduring research interest in the ways museums and heritage sites are used for community and economic development as well as the roles these sites play in community formation and corroboration. He is currently applying this interest to an investigation of the histories of economic and community development East of the Anacostia River in Washington DC. He also has a strong interest in the formation of a coherent community bias within the new museology and the ways that influences collection creation, access and care. Recent publications include Building a Nation: Chickasaw Museums and the construction of history and heritage (University of Alabama Press, 2011) contributed a chapter to Marstine, ed., New Directions in Museum Ethics (Routledge, 2012). See Josh’s posts here, email Josh at Gormanj@si.edu.
Portia James serves as ACM’s Senior Curator. Her responsibilities include the oversight of exhibitions, publications, and research-based programs. Past exhibitions that she has curated include Real McCoy: African American Inventors and Innovators (1989); Black Mosaic: Community, Race and Ethnicity Among Black Immigrants in Washington, D.C. (1994); Down Through the Years: Stories From the Anacostia Museum Collection (1996); Jubilee (2008); East of the River: Continuity and Change (2007); and Call and Response: Community and Creativity (2011-12). Currently she is working on developing museum partnerships and networks with other cultural institutions and organizations that are also interested in doing community-based projects.
Gail S. Lowe
Gail S. Lowe, PhD, is the ACM historian and conducts research for museum projects, exhibitions, and publications, and also curates exhibitions. At present, she is co-curator of the exhibition currently on view Reclaiming the Edge: Urban Waterways and Civic Engagement and the historian and project manager for the Urban Waterways initiative. She edited East of the River (2010), the volume of essays accompanying the museum’s 45th anniversary exhibition. Other publications include Kind Regards of S. G. Brown (1983; co-authored with Louise Daniel Hutchinson) and A Different Drummer: John Kinard and the Anacostia Museum, 1967–1989 (published December 1993; co-authored with Zora Martin-Felton). Email Gail at Loweg@si.edu.
Jennifer Morris is the ACM archivist. She oversees archival processing, cataloguing, and reference services. Her interests are in the care and preservation of family papers, historical photographs, and cultural heritage archives. She earned a BA in Anthropology from the University of Maryland, College Park and a MLIS from the University of Pittsburgh.
Susana Raab is the ACM staff photographer. Much of her work there focuses on documenting urban communities and waterways; ethnic and cultural community events; urban arts in Washington, D.C.; and community life in Washington, D.C. neighborhoods east of the Anacostia River. Raab was born in Lima, Peru and raised throughout the United States. Susana has been the recipient of the White House News Photographers’ Project Grant, a DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities Artist Fellowship, Honorable Mentions in Center’s Project Competition and Curator’s Choice Awards, and a Puffin Grant, among others. Her work is held in the collection of the Smithsonian Institution’s Museum of American History, The Library of Congress, Division of Prints & Photographs, The Art Museum of the Americas, The EnFoco Collection, and the DC Public Art Bank. She received her MA in Visual Communications from Ohio University and her BA in English Literature from James Madison University. Email Susana at Raabs@si.edu.
Baasil Wilder is the ACM Librarian. He administers the museum’s library, cares for books and other materials, and assists staff and researchers in finding information. He also provides reference, research, bibliographic services, and instruction in the use of library resources. His interests include community museology, teaching, and urban ecology. Baasil was born in Washington, DC. He is currently working on a serials budget review, an inventory of unbarcoded serials, and cataloging ACM Education department books for children. He received his MS in Library Science from UNC. Email Baasil at WilderB@si.edu