Whitney Baker Head of Conservation Services at the University of Kansas Libraries.
Head of Conservation Services, KU Libraries, Lecturer
Kenneth Spencer Research Library, Room 250

Whitney Baker received her MLS with an Advanced Certificate in Library and Archives Conservation from the University of Texas at Austin. She completed her undergraduate work at KU (BA Chemistry and Spanish), and has held the post of Conservator for KU Libraries since 2002.  She previously worked in conservation at the Library of Congress and the University of Kentucky.

Baker teaches MUSE 706, Conservation Principles and Practices, for the Museum Studies program.

Head shot of Andy Bentley
Collection Manager, Ichthyology, Bioinformatics Manager, Usability Lead, Specify Collections Management Software, Biodiversity Institute & Natural History Museum
Dyche Hall

My research focuses on collection management – specifically of preservation, digitization, databasing, and maintenance of wet and cryogenic collections. I also have an interest in database development and usability. I have also served as president of the Society for the Preservation of Natural History Collections (SPNHC) (2013-2018).



Tashia Dare, lecturer in the KU Museum Studies Program.
Bailey Hall, room 303C

Tashia Dare has been a lecturer at KU since 2015. She received her master's in religious studies, focusing on the ancient Near East and Mediterranean, and a graduate certificate in peace and conflict studies from KU. She also holds a bachelor's in art history from KU. Her research interests include the affects of armed conflict on cultural heritage, specifically museums and archaeological sites, and issues related to the trafficking of antiquities. Prior to working in higher education Tashia spent more than six years working in museums.

Black woman with shoulder-length curly hair wearing a purple sweater and smiling at the camera
Director, Museum Studies Program, Associate Professor, American Studies and African & African American Studies, Artistic Director, KC Melting Pot Theatre
Lippincott Hall, room 6

Dr. Nicole Hodges Persley is an award-winning professor and director. She is an associate professor of American Studies and African American Studies who specializes areas of hip-hop studies, acting and directing, and African American performance in theater, film and television. An artist-scholar, Hodges Persley creates intentional bridges between the entertainment industry and academia. She is the author of Sampling and Remixing Blackness in Hip-Hop Performance and Breaking It Down: Auditioning for Artists of the Global Majority, co-written with Monica Ndounou of Dartmouth University

Brittany Keegan
Curator-Collections Manager, Watkins Museum of History, Lecturer 

Brittany holds a B.A. in American History and an M.A. in Museum Studies both from the University of Kansas. She has been working with the Watkins Community Museum of History collections and exhibits in various capacities since 2007. In addition to managing the collections, Brittany coordinates volunteers and maintains the Museum’s research resources.

Brittany co-teaches MUSE 704, Introduction to Collections Management and Utilization and MUSE 703, Introduction to Museum Exhibits for the Museum Studies program. 

Steve Nowak
Executive Director, Watkins Museum of History, Lecturer

Steve joined the staff at the Watkins Museum in February 2011. He has had a 25-year career in museum work, with experience in collections management, exhibition development, public programming, and education. His background is in American art, history, and material culture. In addition to his management responsibilities, Steve looks forward to developing public programs, increasing museum involvement with schools and teachers, and working with members of the Douglas County Historical Society.

Steve co-teaches MUSE 704, Introduction to Collections Management and Utilization and MUSE 703, Introduction to Museum Exhibits. Steve also teaches Museum Audience Development for the Museum Studies program.

Kristina Walker
Director of Education & Interpretation, Spencer Museum of Art

Kristina Walker holds an M.A. in visual art education, emphasis in art museum education, and a B.F.A. in art history, both from the University of Kansas. She has been with the Spencer Museum of Art at the University of Kansas in Lawrence for 24 years. As director of education since 2004, Walker oversees the development, production, and evaluation of interpretative materials and experiences that engage visitors with the Museum’s collection and special exhibitions. Her current focus is on developing strategies for incorporating emerging technologies into interpretive materials and strengthening engagement with youth and family audiences and university and college students.

Kristina teaches MUSE 705 Introduction to Museum Public Education for the Museum Studies Program.

Dr. Peter H. Welsh
Professor of Museum Studies
Lippincott Hall, room 6

Professor Welsh's research has addressed a range of issues including the historical and legal background by which museums have come to control culturally sensitive objects; the public representation and interpretation of culture; and concerns over the sustainability of local history museums. He has worked with native cultures in Wyoming and the Southwest, and has conducted archaeological research in Arizona and China. He earned his PhD at the University of Pennsylvania.

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June 2020 Newsletter
January 2019 Newsletter
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