Community Blog

Cultural Institutions & We Are Still In

By: Emily Johnsen, Stephanie Shapiro, & Sarah Sutton, of AAM’s Environment & Climate Network  

 

How great is the museum field’s impact on the United States? Greater than you may realize: the American Alliance of Museums (AAM 2017) tells us there are about 35,000 museums and historic sites in the United States, contributing $50 billion in USD to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), including $6 billion USD to trade, transportation, and utilities.

 

  • If the museum sector were a state, it would rank just behind Albany, the capital of New York State, in economic impact.
  • If the museum sector tracked its environmental footprint, it could no longer ignore the facts of its direct impact on climate change.  
  •  Americans visit those 35,000 museums in person at a rate of 850 million times in a year, and another 524 million times online (more in-person visits than attendance at all major league sports and theme parks combined).
  •  Americans trust those museums more than any media, and more than politicians and academia.

In our economic and carbon footprints, and through that public trust, we find our responsibility and public authority to significantly impact climate change.

 

The best current research, and much experience, tells us that aligned efforts, consistent support, and cooperative practice is what helps create change on a scale that has substantial and necessary impact. Zoos, gardens, aquariums, museums and historic sites of all sizes have the ability to develop coordinated, collaborative efforts to make environmentally sustainable behaviors and practices a priority in our institutions and in our communities. We have the opportunity now to leverage our capacity to create and scale that change through We Are Still In (WASI).

 

Cultural institutions are joining WASI to build their skills and knowledge in sustainability and resilience, and to collaborate with each other and across sectors. Cultural institutions are part of solutions to bigger problems in their communities: climate resilience, social equity, just transitions, reduced environmental impacts and more. Through WASI, we find our opportunity to be that change.  

 

As of April 2018, cultural institutions are a formal sector of the WASI coalition – the world’s largest gathering of “sub-national actors” committed to the goals of the Paris Agreement. We are aligning the significant abilities, resources, and influence of our sector, with the work and resources of other sectors, to address challenges and opportunities associated with environmental sustainability and a changing climate for the benefit of us all.

 

AAM endorses participation in WASI (Museum, July/August 2018), and the Environment & Climate Network’s WASI team is working hard to encourage wide participation. California institutions, including Balboa Park Cultural Partnership, California Academy of Sciences, and Monterey Bay Aquarium have joined, as have state and regional museum associations.

The focus of our work is much more than reducing carbon; it is how to use education, research, and communications to mobilize collaborative and collective action, from every sector, to pursue an inclusive agenda for significant environmental impact. These impacts are research-based commitments to benefit the planet through the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the Paris Agreement. Institutions choose their own paths, according to their own missions, to tackle important causes in their community and on behalf of the planet’s populations.    

 

WASI is made up of 23 organizations, including Bloomberg Philanthropies, Ceres, Climate Nexus, Environmental Defense Fund, Rocky Mountain Institute, Second Nature, Sierra Club, Sustainable Museums, The Climate Group, We Mean Business, and World Wildlife Fund. The Secretariat, made up of World Wildlife Fund, Ceres, and Climate Nexus, manages the day-to-day operations. The leadership team, made up of point people from each sector, coordinates the participation of the more than 2,800 signatories from higher education, faith organizations, health care, business and investors, state and tribes, and cities and counties. Sarah Sutton is the Sector Leader for Cultural Institutions. That means we have a knowledge and power pipeline that runs from our sector to six others already doing this work and looking for collaborative partners.

 

Through WASI, cultural institutions:

  • Raise their profiles locally and nationally,
  •  Access better tools and information for institutional advancement,
  •  Gain peer mentors to advance this work more effectively, and
  •  Demonstrate their awareness of this critical issue and willingness to address it on behalf of their communities.

 

It is complex work and a heavy lift to develop mitigation and adaptation responses that protect our 35,000+ sites and museums and their resources, and to respond to new regulations. On their own, site staff cannot discover and implement responses to a wide array of new challenges while also fulfilling their day-to-day responsibilities. It is only through cooperative efforts that any sector can adequately deal with these multifaceted challenges.

 

Other sectors have knowledge and resources that we need. Cultural institutions have subject matter expertise, trust as an information resource, public engagement bandwidth, and communication skills that other sectors need. The cultural institutions sector strengthens WASI by leveraging sites’ resources and participation in community-based and other cooperative initiatives. WASI strengthens the cultural institutions’ sector by highlighting sites’ and museums’ economic value, knowledge resources, and public engagement capacity for environmental and climate response through mission-based activities. WASI also strengthens individual cultural institutions by sharing resources and expertise to advance environmental sustainability and climate responses, and by being the conduit for multi-sector cooperative initiatives. WASI can be a gateway to potential projects ranging from community energy production, to cooperative green infrastructure development and funding, and to joint research projects with schools and universities, or product development in investors and businesses.   


Next month, the world is coming to California for the Global Climate Action Summit, an international gathering of heads of state and their sustainability teams to discuss advancing each nation’s commitments. Sarah Sutton, lead of the WASI Cultural Institutions sector will be there, as will a number of cultural institution signatories. They will share what they learn about the national effort to create collaborative paths to significant environmental impact – and make sure that museums, zoos, gardens, aquariums, and historic sites can benefit from and add value to that important work.

Please consider attending one of our weekly Zoom sessions to introduce you to WASI, explore how to sign up, and hear about the commitments you can choose or set for yourself. You can sign on at any time, and add or change your commitments at any time. What matters is that you see where you can start, and you can begin by attending one of our weekly Zoom sessions, with more to be listed on the AAM website each month.

 

The California Association of Museums and its members have led in this way before with the Green Museums Initiative and the Ignite conversations. We are grateful that Celeste DeWald (Executive Director, CAM) and Michaeleen Gallagher (CAM Green Museums Initiative Committee Co-Chair; Director of Education and Environmental Programs Annenberg Foundation Trust @ Sunnylands) and are continuing to create space for conversations about new phases of this work. We on the WASI team seek to help the field reach beyond its borders for the greater good, and hope that you will help us keep up that momentum.

 

The changes that our human world need most are all related to climate change. If humans address the causes and opportunities of that changing climate, we can build a safer and more just, healthy, and eventually, peaceful world. Museums have both a limitless value in building that world, and a shared responsibility to do so.

 

Blog with reflections from the California Association of Museums Conference in Palm Springs
By: Carolyn Hope Lopez, 2018 CAM Fellow

The 2018 CAM Conference, Modern Museums: Relevant & Resilient was the first museum conference I attended. The chance to participate could not have arrived at a more perfect moment. During a time when I felt discouraged by the museum field, the CAM conference reminded me that there are museum professionals doing amazing work who are willing to help emerging professionals. 

In May 2017, I graduated with my master’s degree in museum studies with a focus in collections management from George Washington University. Immediately after, I began an 8-month internship with the J. Paul Getty Museum in the registrar’s office. This was an incredible opportunity to receive right after graduation. It was also paid, which is hard to come by for museum internships. I felt extremely lucky, to say the least, to be able to come home to Los Angeles, California, and start my career at such a prestigious museum and to be compensated for my internship. 

These feelings, however, were pushed aside by the beginning of 2018, when feelings of anxiety cluttered my mind. I asked myself, “What is my next step?” Looking at museum websites, searching for collections management jobs in Los Angeles, I was discouraged by the lack of openings I felt qualified for. The opportunities that were available seemed to require more experience and skills than I had. I knew that one day I could apply for those positions, but I knew that I would need more training. Or, was I just underestimating my qualifications? And, if I did see something I felt qualified for, how would I craft the perfect cover letter along with a polished resume? 

In addition, I was beginning to feel the financial pressures of living in Los Angeles and student loan providers were contacting me for their first payment. Knowing full well that the nonprofit world of museums meant a lower salary, I did not realize the strain it would put on my life until now. 

Soon I found myself drifting to various websites for companies unrelated to museums and cultural institutions. “Could I do this in the meantime? Do my skills transfer? How long would it take me to get back into collections management? Is this the right move?,” I asked myself.

Not to mention, the museum field is both historically and currently predominantly white, in its leadership, staff, and visitors. There are not many Latinas in the field, let alone in collections management. Coming fresh from a graduate program that also reflected this lack of diversity in both its faculty and student body, I still carried a feeling of being out of place and on my own. 

Putting all these worries on the back burner, I prepared for the CAM 2018 conference. Since this was my first conference, I did not know what to expect. Who was I going to meet? What was I going to gain? How would I present myself? “Wow,” I thought, “I have to write a mock cover letter for the first session and it will be workshopped by a panel of museum professionals!” Although the fear of the unknown made me extremely nervous to attend the conference, I was put at ease and comforted by the team behind the CAM Fellows program. 

After the first 2 sessions, Prepare to Impress: Institutional Research for Cover Letters and Interviews and Getting Your Foot in the Door: Mastering the Elusive Interview, I was relieved to finally get answers to the questions that had constantly haunted me when applying and interviewing for jobs. The impressive panelists for both sessions were encouraging and frank in their opinions on resumes and cover letters. Attendees were also able to break out into groups and work one-on-one with some of the panelists to review resumes and cover letters, and to practice interview questions.   

After the sessions, I had a long conversation with panelist Michelle Powers, who took the time to read through my resume. As she crossed out, circled, and jotted down notes, she encouraged me to be confident in my achievements. She then went on to tell me not to apologize for the areas I was lacking in, but instead to be excited about the opportunity to learn. 

Leaving the first 2 sessions, I felt more confident and motivated to rework my resume and write cover letters that would highlight my successes and prove why I would be a valuable addition to an institution. Furthermore, I realized that I am in an amazing place to take advantage of the connections I do have, and not hesitate about reaching out to other professionals for words of wisdom. Regardless of my feelings of being alone, there is an entire field of museum professionals who can help me. 

Feeling better about my job search, I started to attend various discussions on diversity, equity, and outreach. These were conversations I had yet to have since I graduated from my master’s program, and I was reminded of how much these discussions mean to me. Sessions such as The LatinXperience Study: An Experiential View of LatinX Engagement in the Arts in California and Our Responsibility: Diversity, Equity, and the Role of the Museum Community inspired me to have these difficult conversations at whatever institution I find myself in. I should not only participate in, but lead discussions like this and share my own thoughts and experiences. 

One session at the CAM 2018 conference that had a significant impact on me was Meaningful Community Engagement: Existing Outside Your Walls. Presented by Daniel Aguirre, Community Engagement Manager of the Fleet Science Center, this wonderful presentation gave a glimpse into a yearlong program that encouraged a Latino community to discover and connect with the power of science in their everyday lives. A story during this session that really resonated with me was about Steve “Masa” Wade, a 60-year-old man who left school during the 5th grade and committed his life to building low riders. After being asked to lead a presentation on the engineering of low riding, he refused, asking, “Who am I to teach anyone anything?”

This is common feeling shared by underrepresented communities regardless of their achievements and qualifications, and I immediately knew what Masa meant by his statement. Despite the work I put into earning my degrees and participating in many rewarding internships, I still feel the pains of the “imposter syndrome,” that someone, someday, was going to figure out I do not belong here. Of course, this is not true by any means, but these feelings have been built up over time by racism, inequality, and lack of representation of my community. 

Since I chose to write an article on this session, I was able to connect with Aguirre after the conference and have discussions regarding these concepts and the work he is doing to break down these walls. 

With my career focused in collections management, I often find myself in storage rooms and back offices, away from the public and other departments of a museum. Sometimes I find myself being comfortable in these spaces and forgetting what I can do outside my walls to better the field and my own community. Aguirre has inspired me beyond words to remember what it is that I am passionate about. Having accomplished so much, it means nothing to me if it is not shared with my community. I very much wish to inspire and support others, especially those in the Latino community, to find a career in museums. Although the road may not be easy and and can be very discouraging at times, it is a unique field–one that preserves, presents, and engages with the world’s art and cultural heritage.  

By the end of the 2018 CAM conference, I left with many of my earlier worries settled. These worries were replaced by a new motivation to not give up on the museum field or on myself. I met professionals who were willing to continue these conversations and support me in pursuing my career and my passions. Thus, I want to offer my support to any other museum professional who is feeling the same feelings I struggle with. This blog post is a reminder that someone is out there sharing your struggle. You are not alone. Hopefully, you find comfort in my story, just as I found comfort in the 2018 CAM conference.   
 
About the Author/CAM Fellow:
Born and raised in Los Angeles, California, Carolyn Lopez is a recent graduate of the George Washington University Museum Studies Graduate program. She currently interns at the J. Paul Getty Museum in the Registrar’s Office.

 





Blog with reflections from the California Association of Museums Conference in Palm Springs
By: Tessa Tweet, 2018 CAM Fellow

When I started my first year of college, I told my advisor that I wanted to go into museum education. I liked teaching but didn’t want to be in a classroom. I wanted to communicate ideas and concepts outside of the strict structure of academia, and had always felt at home in museums, from galleries to scientific dioramas. By the start of my senior year in college, after working summers in a museum education department and a few years into my anthropology degree, I knew wholeheartedly that museum education was not for me. My advisor asked why I had the change of heart when only a few semesters before I had been eager to apply to museum studies programs. I told her that I wanted a job where I would be financially secure. I did not want to go to school for a master's degree only to better compete for a part-time, low-paying side job as a barista. Even in institutions devoted to informal education, the education departments seem low in the museum pecking order. And if I wanted to capture my love of communication in an industry where I would be constantly challenged, why not work in tech and pay off my student loans? It all came down to museum education not being practical. Yes, museum education seemed like a perfect fit in some ways, but my pragmatic side shuddered.

Now, almost two years out of college, where am I? I am the School Programs Assistant at The Huntington Library. I attended the CAM Conference in Palm Springs in February, and felt at once invigorated and nervous. It seems clear to me now that my love for museum education is stronger than my doubts. The community at CAM was strong, from the former Getty Multicultural Internship alums that I connected with to the museum professionals who offered to look over my resume. There was a sense of community because you have to love museum work, since it comes hand-in-hand with sacrifices. 

I am still early in my career. I still babysit on the side for a couple that pays well and has cute kids. I hope that the connections I made at CAM mean the uncertainty that steered me away from museums will be uncalled for. Right now, as an emerging professional with less than five years in the museum education field, my excitement outweighs the negatives that I had rattled off to my college advisor a few years ago. I am grateful I decided to follow my interests and my love of informal education. It is the people in the museum field who support each other that make this career worth it – even if it’s not the most pragmatic choice. 

About the Author/CAM Fellow
Tessa Tweet is the School Programs Assistant at The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. She graduated from Pitzer College, where she majored in anthropology and focused on Brazilian culture and museum practices. In 2016 she was a Getty Multicultural Intern at The Getty Foundation. She lives in Pasadena and on weekends, you can find her at the Norton Simon Museum or at any number of used bookstores. 



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Blog with reflections from the California Association of Museums Conference in Palm Springs
By  Leonardo Vilchis-Zarate, CAM 2018 Fellow

I wasn’t sure what to expect before attending the California Association of Museum’s conference in Palm Springs. I had a grasp, based on my own experiences, of what the theme Modern Museums: Relevant and Resilient meant. “Resilient” seemed to reflect the fear of possible NEH and NEA defunding, as well as empowerment from a desire to continue despite this obstacle. “Relevant” was close to me, as I had participated in other museum programs where the topic of institutions as important and relevant to their communities was emphasized. Nonetheless, the conference’s workshops, presentations, and discussions went further than anything I had expected. From the conversations I had, I was happy to hear that many efforts were in place to change museums. It was at the forefront of many people’s minds to bring more audiences into museums and to engage them in different ways. Everyone brought their own issues and solutions to the conference, creating a platform to discuss and advance museums in communities where they are most needed. Even in the presentations on topics I had not previously considered, it was refreshing to hear that there were many professionals trying to do their best and willing to support each other. Learning about everyone's struggles helped me to better understood my own.

See the source imageI was already predisposed to think that museums are relevant and a channel for social justice. From participating in other museum programs, the idea of museums as spaces for transformative change and inclusion mattered deeply to me. I imagined museums could be spaces available for all, where people of different ages, ethnicities, and backgrounds could benefit from thinking about history in alternative ways to how we are taught in classrooms. For the most part, however, I understood this issue as a shortcoming of museums “not doing enough,” but I had no idea how it could be enacted or what barriers museums face when attempting to connect with disadvantaged communities. By attending the conference, I met numerous professionals who were grappling with the issue of community involvement in different ways with their institutions. I became more aware of the varied struggles museums face and understood that social justice had no singular formula that would apply across museums serving communities of different sizes and interests. 

See the source imageThe first workshop I attended was The Tiny Museum and the Big Strategic Plan. Admittedly, I believed that this workshop would be about miniature museums like the egg-shaped NuMu from Guatemala, which was recently replicated at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. The workshop was actually about small museums in comparison to larger ones that have more funding, staff, and other resources. Although I had worked in museums before, this was my first immersion into the interior of museums, where budgets and strategic plans have to be drafted, approved, and carried out. This is a big feat and concern for museums because it affects the entire mission of a museum, how they operate and how they are received by visitors. As part of the workshop, we broke into groups of four and drafted a strategic plan for an existing small museum. We had to look at a particularly diverse and unrelated collection, as is typical of smaller institutions. From this point, we had to devise an idea for how to bring this collection together and establish a mission for the museum. Approaching the program from a historical point of view, our group decided to make it a museum of town history. Following this, we had to figure out a way to get the museum to work. This was difficult as we operated within budget constraints. As our group was comprised of people approaching this conference from different disciplines, our museum may have been a bit naive. In confronting issues of lack of staff, collection size and variety, as well as interpersonal disputes within the group, it was interesting to understand the barriers that affect museums before they can even consider questions of social justice. The session was a fun activity in understanding the range of struggles that museums can face and it was a helpful exercise on how to broach those challenges for the greatest common good.

The tools I gained in this exercise workshop, and the conference overall, are invaluable to understanding my own role within museums. Museums are obviously places with many possibilities and equally as many obstacles. They have so many moving pieces and it’s really important not to lose hope in creating the types of change we wish to see. The obstacles can be overwhelming, but as I learned through this conference, they also present the necessary conflict through which we can learn and help others to learn as well. 

About the Author/CAM Fellow
Leonardo Vilchis-Zarate is an undergraduate art history major at the University of California Riverside where, through the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship, he is conducting research on gentrification and the history of development in Los Angeles. In the summer of 2016, he was a Getty Multicultural Undergraduate Intern at the Pomona College Museum of Art. Also in 2016, he was a part of the Mellon Undergraduate Curatorial Summer Academy at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art where he co-curated a pop-up exhibition on abstraction in photography.

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By Karen Limón Corrales, 2018 CAM Fellow

Growing up undocumented in a working class, mixed-status family, questions of injustice were often on my mind, as was the perceived pressure to pursue a career that would make my parents’ sacrifices worth it. When I began my undergraduate education, I naturally chose Political Science as my major—I dreamt initially of going on to law school, defending and supporting my parents and somehow, through my success, proving myself worthy of citizenship. In my many classes on constitutional law and political theory, however, I felt isolated from my peers whose relationship to the bureaucracy of the legal system was different from mine and who felt safer talking about their experiences than I could.

In my third year of college, I began interning at the Center for the Study of Political Graphics (CSPG), a political poster archive that approaches materials in the collection as historical documents and works of art. It was a stroke of luck that lead me there, a mixture of pending major requirements, astrological guidance, and a quick search for the word “political” on my school’s Career Center website. I didn’t know what an archive was and didn’t understand words in the job description like “cataloguing” or “preservation.” The organization’s website, however, advertised an upcoming exhibition titled No Human Being is Illegal using Yolanda Lopez’s well-known artwork, “Who’s the Illegal Alien, Pilgrim?” I had never heard my humanity defended in such a beautiful and assertive way, and Lopez’s defiant mix of anger and humor transcended immigration narratives I was used to. Despite my confusion around what the work entailed, I was allured by the images and applied.

“Bigger Than Any Border,” Julio Salgado 
Once the archival internship began, I quickly fell in love with CSPG’s collection of social movement prints and posters. Through the task of cataloguing the collection, I became exposed to migrant artists documenting their own existence as well as that of dynamic grassroots movements for change. The first time I came across Julio Salgado’s artwork, I felt empowered by his colorful characters who boldly exclaimed, “Undocumented, unafraid, and unapologetic!” and “No Sir, I will NOT show you my papers.” Through these vibrant and seductive artworks, I learned about immigrant communities actively resisting xenophobic policies like Arizona’s SB1070 and the Secure Communities program. By showing that others like me were openly fighting to defend our humanity, the artwork allowed me to overcome feelings of shame and isolation.

Learning the practice and theory of archiving was life changing, especially because the posters I worked with provided alternative realities to me for the first time. In addition to teaching me more about my own identities, the collection exposed me to struggles for justice all over the world, from Zapatistas in Chiapas to Palestinians in Gaza and beyond. The artwork documented an intimate side of political history I’d never learned about in my classes, one where organized groups of people challenge their oppressors and win. For someone of undocumented status, documenting these victories was a new and radical possibility that changed my personal, political, and professional trajectory.

About the Author/CAM Fellow:

Karen Limón Corrales received her B.A. in Political Science and English Literature at California State University, Long Beach. She was a Getty Multicultural Undergraduate Intern in 2014 at the Center for the Study of Political Graphics and has since worked at various museums in communications, education, and visitor engagement. She currently works at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles.

 

 

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By Michaeleen Gallagher, GMI Committee Member, CAM Board Member, and CAM Past President

As California continues to lead in areas related to environmental accountability, the state’s museum community will also see new legislation and regulations that affect our operational practices. CAM’s Government Relations Committee already reviews bills that may affect museums overall. Moving forward, CAM’s Green Museums Initiative Committee (GMI) will also be looking at legislation that affects museum operations with a focus on how they relate to sustainability and the environment.

GMI will utilize CAM’s blog as a platform to share this information as well as engage in other discussions on green programming and environmental accountability in California museums. As this collaborative model progresses, we hope to increase our cross-committee approach to expand the scope of perspectives and bolster the work of all of CAM’s committees.

In this first blog post, we will highlight AB 802, a bill passed in 2015 that goes into effect on June 1, 2018. AB 802 specifically addresses benchmarking energy use and is intended to provide building owners and stakeholders with information about their building’s energy performance. In the U.S., twenty-four cities and one county are already requiring this type of annual energy benchmarking. The data provided through the benchmarking process helps utilities and governments identify areas of need when designing programs that provide financing, technical expertise, and training.

According to the California Energy Commissions (CEC), the information can also inform real estate investment decisions. Museums can take this opportunity to show leadership in operational practices, allowing us to highlight areas where we are already providing sustainable models. According to the CEC, it may also open funding opportunities and expertise partnerships to achieve increased energy efficiency and share those successes.

Note: It’s important to understand that although the bill refers to “commercial buildings,” in our conversations with the CEC, this designation is a general definition and will include museums. Eventually the regulations will include all commercial and multi-unit residential buildings in California.

How does AB 802 affect institutions in 2018?

“AB 802 requires that utilities provide whole building, aggregated energy use data to owners of commercial and multifamily residential buildings upon request, and requires that owners of buildings larger than 50,000 square feet report their buildings’ energy use to the California Energy Commission by June 1 each year.” – CEC

Institutions that meet ALL of the following criteria are included in the 2018 reporting:

  1. Have a single building OR multiple units that are sharing one energy meter.
  2. Have a total square footage serviced by that meter greater than 50,000 sq.ft.
  3. Have no residential utility account.

What is the responsibility of the utilities?

  1. Upon request of the building owner, they must provide “whole building aggregated energy use data.”

What is the responsibility of the building owners that meet the three requirements listed above?

  1. Request the energy data from their utilities.
  2. Report their buildings’ energy use to the California Energy Commissions by June 1 of each year.

How do institutions report energy data and how is it used?

  1. Submissions will be made through ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager, a free, online tool provided by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
  2. This platform will track and benchmark performance of buildings as the information is submitted.
  3. Building performances will be compared and reported to the CEC.
  4. The CEC and partners are developing resources to interpret the information and provide opportunities to improve performance.
  5. The information will be publicly accessible in 2019

Who will be included beginning in 2019?

  1. Buildings with 17 or more residential utility accounts will be included in 2019
  2. Each year, buildings holding smaller square footage will be included with the intent of all buildings included in the future.

Additional information can be found at www.energy.ca.gov/benchmarking/.

Museums that are not currently required to participate can still opt-in by voluntarily reporting their energy data with the EPA’s Energy Star platform. This will offer those institutions the opportunity to see where their buildings rate in relation to other institutions and building types. This can help inform operational decisions that improve your energy use.

CAM’s GMI Committee will continue to monitor trends and practices that can be shared through this blog. Please stay tuned!

Michaeleen Gallagher has a B.A. in Art History and a M.S. in Evironmental Policy & Management. She has developed curriculum and programming at the Reuben H. Fleet Science and Technology Center in San Diego, The Living Desert in Palm Desert, and the Outer Banks Wildlife Shelter in North Carolina. She spent three years teaching in Japan, has been a symposium speaker for wildlife organizations in NC and VA; and has two published teacher guides for the IMAX™ films, The Magic of Flight and Everest, and in 2014 published the book Art & Nature: The Gardens of Sunnylands. She is now the Director of Education & Environmental Programs at Sunnylands, developing science, art programming, and sustainability policies.