The Friends of the Fort Pitt Museum were described in Monday’s editorial ("Fort Pitt’s Rescuer: The Museum Commission Should Go with the Pros") as "overly ambitious" for wanting to run the museum next year. This despite the fact that many of us have decades of first-hand experience with the museum; we don’t have to take tours of it, as History Center employees do, to find out what it contains.
We would retain (as the History Center would not) four current staff, including PHMC’s own site administrator of 10 years. We will have a blue-ribbon advisory group including Bob Wilburn (formerly head of Carnegie Institute), a retired senior vice president of U.S. Steel, Linda Dickerson and a Duquesne University professor in museum studies. The proposed acting director has a quarter-century of managerial experience, much of it heading non-profit organizations.
This is not a hospital operating room, or even a newspaper. It is a small museum with a small staff and a modest budget. Our experience is more than sufficient for the task at hand, and we bring to management not only that site-specific experience but lower costs and a commitment to retain the unique character of the Fort Pitt Museum. The History Center may seem the obvious choice to some, but maybe they should look a little harder at the facts.
President, Friends of the Fort Pitt Museum