David B. Brownlee
Chairman, Shapiro-Weitzenhoffer Professor of the History of Art, University of Pennsylvania
Jaffe Professor of the History of Art, University of Pennsylvania
Professor of English (Cinema Studies), University of Pennsylvania
Evan C. Thompson Professor for Excellence in Teaching, Mathematics, and Dean of the College, University of Pennsylvania
Oliver St. Clair Franklin
O.B.E. Investment analyst (former President of International House)
George W. Gephart Jr.
President & CEO, Academy of Natural Sciences
Executive Director, Redevelopment Authority, City of Philadelphia
Executive Director and President, The Barnes Foundation
Director, Wagner Free Institute
Executive Director, City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program
Walter H. Annenberg Professor of History and Civic House Faculty Advisor, University of Pennsylvania
Joseph J. Rishel
Gisela and Dennis Alter Senior Curator of European Painting before 1900, Philadelphia Museum of Art
H. Carton Rogers III
Vice Provost and Director of Libraries, University of Pennsylvania
Ralph M. Rosen
Rose Family Endowed Term Professor of Classical Studies, and Associate Dean for Graduate Studies, University of Pennsylvania
Chief Cultural Officer, Office of the Arts, Culture, and the Creative Economy, City of Philadelphia
In 1937 a small group of women, primarily wives and relatives of Penn Museum's Board of Managers, formed the Women's Committee to stimulate interest in the Museum's research and educational programs, while contributing a warming "woman's touch" to the building and its facilities.
Visitors to the Museum today unknowingly benefit from the efforts of these capable, energetic, far-sighted women. They began a tradition of initiating and developing new projects, wherever they saw a need, and supporting these until they became integrated into the Museum structure when appropriate.
A look back shows that almost every phase of Museum activity has benefited from Women’s Committee's initiatives: support for research and educational programs, including funding professional development opportunities and publications; hands-on sorting of artifacts; helping curators and keepers in storage; furnishing a Conservation Laboratory; and underwriting training of a Conservator.
Other programs were developed to engage a larger public: lectures showcasing current research ran for years before becoming part of Museum Events. Women's Committee Tours continue to invite travelers to visit archaeological sites all over the world with Museum scholars.
To interpret the Museum's collections, the Women's Committee established the Volunteer Guides program and published a Guide to the Collections. Later, Mobile Guides took Museum artifacts directly into the schools. Both Guides programs are administered by the Museum's Education Department today.
The Women’s Committee founded the Museum's first coffee shop, which became the Museum Cafe. They also started The Pyramid Shop, still the best place to buy children's gifts. The Casting Committee continues to hand-craft reproductions of Museum artifacts, available for purchase in the Museum Shop. On Sundays, gallery visitors are welcomed by our “Meeters and Greeters.”
For 30 years, the Women's Committee wrote and published the Members' Newsletter predecessor to the Museum's When in the World? calendar and the "Museum Mosaic" feature in Expedition magazine. The Committee also supported a public relations position until the Museum set up a Public Information Office in 1980.
In the 1990's, the Women's Committee inspired two exhibits: "Toys," coincided with the Committee's first Peace Around the World multi-cultural family holiday celebration, now a Museum-sponsored annual event. "44 Celebrity Eyes" highlighted collections in storage by displaying artifacts chosen by twenty-two prominent individuals, in tribute to the new Mainwaring Wing.
Celebrating its’ 75th Anniversary in 2012, Committee Members have been dedicated to assisting the Penn Museum: whether planting gardens, refurbishing bathrooms and entranceways, or providing flower arrangements to grace the entrances, the House and Garden committee has been there. From auctions to galas our activities raise awareness and funds while bringing old and new friends to the Museum.
Michael J. Kowalski,W74, PAR, Chairman
Robert M. Baylis
David Brownlee, Ph.D., HOM85 (ex-officio)
David T. Clancy, W70
William L. Conrad, PAR
Carrie S. Cox, PAR
Susan Frier Danilow, Esquire, CW74, G74, PAR
Michael Feng, C79
Steven J. Fluharty, Ph.D., C79, GR81, HOM92, PAR (ex-officio)
Criswell C. Gonzalez
Peter G. Gould, LPS10
Ingrid A. Graham
Amy Gutmann, Ph.D., HOM04 (ex-officio)
John C. Hover II, C65, WG67
Stacey Rosner Lane, Esquire, C80, GR13, PAR
Diane von Schlegell Levy
Joseph E. Lundy, Esquire, W65
Frederick J. Manning, W69
Carlos L. Nottebohm, W64
Geraldine Paier, Ph.D., HUP66, NU68, GNU85, GR94
William L. Potter, WG88
Vincent Price, Ph.D., HOM98, (ex-officio)
John R. Rockwell, W64, WG66, PAR
Eric J. Schoenberg, Ph.D., GEN93, WG93, PAR
Julian Siggers, Ph.D. (ex-officio)
Nicole Stach, Esquire (ex-officio)
Nancy Freeman Tabas, PAR (ex-officio)
Gregory Annenberg Weingarten
Jill Topkis Weiss, C89, WG93
Susan W. Catherwood (Chairman Emerita)
Mary Bert Gutman, PAR
Bruce Mainwaring, C47, PAR
Sara S. Senior, CW52, PAR
Charles K. Williams II, Ph.D., GR78, HON97
Josephine Hueber, CW47, PAR
For 125 years, our Museum’s three-part mission—research, collections stewardship, and educational outreach—has been focused around improving our understanding of our shared human heritage. Our collection of roughly one million objects covers the entire history of humanity—from stone tools and household items to architectural monuments and fine art objects—and reveals the incredible and diverse accomplishments of people from all over the world.
Most of the objects in our collection come directly from our own archaeological excavations and anthropological expeditions, and—as our archives house the related field notes, letters, research reports, photographs, and drawings—we are able to present them in our galleries with an understanding of their cultural and environmental contexts. And Penn archaeologists and anthropologists are still exploring, excavating, and researching around the world today—often with Penn students among their team members. You can read about their discoveries on their research pages or blog entries on this site, or visit the Museum to hear them lecture and ask them questions at one of our many programs and events.
Since its founding in 1887, the Penn Museum has been a museum of the world and for the world—at its heart, about exploration and discovery. I invite you to share in our great, human adventure. Return to our website often. I promise you will find something new every time. And come and enjoy our galleries. In addition to magnificent objects, our interactive features will offer you plenty of ways to explore for yourself, and to tell us what you think and what else you would like to see.
Penn Museum is 125 years old and still exploring—we invite you to join the voyage of discovery.
Julian Siggers, Ph.D.