The MESDA Summer Institute is led by MESDA Curator Dr. Daniel Ackermann (’07). In addition to Dr. Ackermann, students work closely with MESDA curators and staff including Robert Leath (’91), Chief Curator; Gary Albert (’08), Director of MESDA Research; Johanna Brown (’93), Curator of Moravian Decorative Arts; Jenny Garwood, Adjunct Curator of Textiles; and Frank Vagnone, President and CEO of Old Salem Museums & Gardens and author of The Anarchist Guide to Historic House Museums.
During the Institute, students will also work with a number of distinguished curators and scholars from other museums and academic institutions. Among those joining the class are:
- Dr. Torren Gatson (’15, ’16, ’17), Assistant Professor of History at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.
- Ronald L. Hurst (’78), Carlisle Humelsine Chief Curator and Vice President, Collections, Conservation, and Museums at Colonial Williamsburg, co-author of Southern Furniture 1680-1830: The Colonial Williamsburg Collection.
- Dr. Cristian Koot, Professor of History at Towson University, author of Empire at the Periphery: British Colonists, Anglo-Dutch Trade, and the Development of the British Atlantic, 1621-1713, and A Biography of a Map in Motion: Augustine Herrman’s Chesapeake.
- Dr. Louis Nelson (’96), Professor of Architectural History and Vice Provost for Academic Outreach at the University of Virginia, author of The Beauty of Holiness: Anglicanism and Architecture in Colonial South Carolina, Architecture and Empire in Jamaica, and co-editor ofEducated in Tyranny: Slavery at Thomas Jefferson’s University.
- Dr. Anthony S. Parent Jr., Professor of History at Wake Forest University, author of Foul Means: The Formation of a Slave Society in Virginia 1660-1740, and co-author of Old Dominion, New Commonwealth: A History of Virginia 1607-2007.
- Matthew Webster, Director of the Grainger Department of Architectural Preservation and Research, Colonial Williamsburg.
- Dr. Jennifer Van Horn (’04), Assistant Professor of Art History and History at the University of Delaware, author of The Power of Objects in Eighteenth Century British America.
- Carolyn Weekley, Curator of Paintings Emerita, Colonial Williamsburg, author of Painters and Paintings in the Early American South.