Holly Hurd grew up in a small town in Idaho, and attended school at the University of California at Berkeley and later Cornell University where she received a PHD in Molecular Biology. She moved to Maine with her family in 2001 and, after raising two girls, she began volunteering and later working in the field of history. She graduated with a Masters Degree from the University of Southern Maine’s American and New England Studies program in 2013 and worked as an Educator, Archivist, and Curator at the Osher Map Library, North Yarmouth, Yarmouth and Freeport Historical Societies before becoming the Executive Director of Tate House Museum in May of 2020. She has published two illustrated history books and written various historical articles.
As THM's consulting curator, Laura Fecych Sprague has managed and helped interpret the historic furnishings collection of the George Tate House since 1980. She has also overseen many preservation efforts for the National Historic Landmark. An independent museum curator, Ms. Sprague has studied early Maine's material culture and decorative arts for many years, also contributing to research, exhibitions, and publications for the Bowdoin College Museum of Art, Maine Historical Society, Maine State Museum, and the Portland Museum of Art, among others. She has published and lectured widely, and edited Agreeable Situations: Society, Commerce and Art in Southern Maine, 1780-1830 (1987). She serves on the board of the Maine Historical Society.
Molly is currently an attorney at Bernstein Shur specializing in Health Care. She previously served as a clerk in the Maine Legislature, an aide in the Connecticut Legislature, and an attorney in a small firm in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, focusing on administrative law and appellate litigation.
She enjoys being on a beach or at a lake, camping, reading, and spending time with her family of three young boys and her husband Patrick. She received her BA degree from the University of Maine and JD from Quinnipiac University School of Law.
Dr. Aimée Keithan is a buildings archaeologist with experience in America and Britain researching the history, significance, and preservation issues surrounding historic buildings. She recently completed a PhD in Conservation Studies (Historic Buildings) at the University of York, England. Her research focused on examining the architecture of elite houses to reveal evidence of underrepresented “silent inhabitants”, including servants and enslaved people. During research fellowships at George Washington’s Mount Vernon and the Preservation Society of Newport County her work on servant spaces aimed to draw attention to the evolution of service spaces and the critical role of Black servants in America’s domestic service history. Aimée also has extensive experience with British historic house museums and holds an MA in Buildings Archaeology from the University of York and a BA in Architecture from the University of Maine at Augusta. She is currently the Museum Services Manager at Pejepscot History Center in Brunswick.
Joan and her husband, Jim, moved to Maine in 2002 after spending a career in the insurance industry for most of her working life. Joan’s connection to the Tate House Museum started in 2009 when she took the Portland History Docent course and felt a strong connection to the staff of the museum. She started as a docent and shortly after joined the education and publicity committees. She was asked if she would be interested in running the museum gift shop and has been doing that since 2011. She has held various positions on the Board of Directors over the years.
Alessa Wylie served for 14 years as Director of Old Fort Johnson National Historic Landmark, the 1749 fortified Mohawk Valley homestead of Sir William Johnson. While in New York she also served on the board of Green Hill Cemetery where she created and led the first walking tours for this historic 1858 cemetery. She also helped research and produce the publication Uncovering The Underground Railroad: Abolitionism, and African American Life in Montgomery County, New York, 1820-1890. Alessa moved back to Maine with her husband Steve in 2014 and is currently Manager of Education Programs for Greater Portland Landmarks. They live in South Portland and when not visiting historic sites they can most likely be found at Two Lights State Park.
Eric is a member of the Stroudwater Neighborhood Association who has lived in the neighborhood with his wife Colleen since 2010. He grew up in Orono, Maine and is a graduate from the University of Maine and Southern New Hampshire University. For thirty-seven years, Eric has been employed by Milton CAT, where he has held a variety of marketing and sales related positions. One of his greatest enjoyments is collaborating with other employees across a variety of departments on projects that benefit the company and customers. He has a particular interest in the Tate House Museum and advancing the awareness of the significant role the Tate House and its residents contributed to the history of Portland, the surrounding community, and the State of Maine.
Mike is employed as the Program Lead with the Maine Department of Corrections only juvenile residential transition facility. He devotes his professional time to growth as an educational leader and seeks opportunities to positively impact communities in Maine. Mike attended school at the University of Maine at Farmington and graduated with a BS in Secondary Education Social Studies and a BA in Geography and Community Development. As part of his work as a history and social studies educator, he was awarded the Lawrence H. and Pearl W. Fickett Leadership Scholarship twice. He has served on the Board for the Mission Hope Foundation and enjoys being a high school athletic coach. He is passionate about Maine history and studies many topics in history, geography, education and philosophy.
Dan has had a life-long passion for historic buildings, sketching them at an early age, and later taking every opportunity to seek them out when he travels in the USA and abroad. He and his wife Veronica have been working to restore a 1840s farmhouse in North Yarmouth for over 30 years! His professional career began as an advertising Art and Creative Director in New York City in 1977, and he worked in advertising for 40+ years at different NY and Maine agencies including Mercy Hospital, Hancock Lumber, Oakhurst Dairy, University of Maine, WEX, Casco Northern Bank, Amatos, and Holy Donuts. While employed by Burgess Advertising in Portland, he developed Tate House Museum’s current logo. Dan has received several awards for his work in advertising including the Joan Dow Award for creative excellence, the Conwell Award for lifetime achievement in advertising, and several Broderson awards.
Sadhana is a retired dentist who has been a member of the Maine dental community since 1990. After training at the University of Pennsylvania and specialty training at Tufts University, she moved to Maine to start and run her own solo practice. Sadhana and her husband live in North Yarmouth and have raised their three children there. Sadhana has had an interest in history sparked by classes in British Royal Families as an undergraduate student. Born in India and immigrating to the US at age 5, Sadhana is inspired to understand the variety of cultural norms and way people live around our nation and the world throughout time. When traveling, she makes it a priority to learn the local history and visit museums to gain perspective and to appreciate the current lives of the people.
Bio in progress
Virginia “Gini” is a retired Early Childhood Educator. She graduated from the Portland History Docents program in 2009 and afterwards became interested in the Tate House and Colonial Dames. She joined the Maine chapter of the Dames in 2011. Since that time, she has volunteered as a tour guide and served on the Tate House board.. She serves as Secretary of the Board of Managers of the Colonial Dames and is a member of the D. A. R. Elizabeth Wadsworth Chapter and Past Governor Maine Mayflower Society. She enjoys working in the 18th century Tate House garden, knitting, and cooking.
Tate House Museum
1267 Westbrook Street
Portland, Maine 04102