Emering Museum Professional
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USS KIDD Veterans Museum Executive Director Alejandra Juan was named “Emerging Museum Professional” by the Louisiana Association of Museums (LAM) at their annual awards luncheon held at the Diamond Grill in Alexandria, La., on Sept. 14, 2015. Juan is in her second year as Executive Director of the USS KIDD Veterans Museum. In that time, her strong leadership skills and public relations background have helped her reenergize the organization and build stronger ties within the community.
“I can’t think of anyone more deserving of this award than Alex Juan,” said Louisiana Naval War Memorial Commission Chairman Joe Jenkins. “Her strong leadership skills and passion for raising community awareness have benefited the KIDD in ways we could not have imagined.”
In the past 18 months, KIDD has garnered local, national and international attention for new programming initiated under Juan’s tenure such as the KIDD Keynotes lecture series, Yoga and Art Therapy for Veterans, an expanded First Free Sunday program with themed arts & crafts, Sponsor a Veteran, adults-only Twilight Tours, and more. Fifty complimentary events are now available to the public due to her commitment to diversifying programming, community partnerships and her focus on reaching newer audiences. “LAM has become a close-knit society with all of the budget cuts to the museum industry in recent years,” said Sherry Wagener, President of the Louisiana Association of Museums. “For those of us who have survived those cuts, it was thrilling to find a fresh, new face in our museum community. Alex Juan is benefitting our profession in such an invigorating way by providing great new ideas to one of our long-term and long-established members. We were honored to give this award to someone of her high caliber.” Under Juan’s stewardship, KIDD staff and volunteers have also flourished with two volunteers receiving awards for excellence from the Historic Naval Ship Association, an international organization with over 170 historic vessels located across five continents. Volunteer recruitment and community partnerships have also increased under Juan’s guidance with over $ 177,000 of new funding and in-kind services being received in the first half of 2015.
“Alex goes above and beyond in all that she does and for that, we could not be more pleased to have her as our executive director,” said Jenkins.