NAAM E-NEWS – February 2016, Volume 18, Issue 1

February 18, 2016 in Newsletter by Courtney Meredith

NAAM E-NEWS – February 2016, Volume 18, Issue 1

In This Issue


President’s Message

By: Terry Ernest

Occasionally a change in the Federal Tax Code can be a wonderful opportunity for our non-profit museums. One such change occurred last year when Congress passed the PATH Act, an omnibus bill that kept the government from shutting down, in December 2015. This bill contains a permanent extension of the IRA rollover, which is great news for charitably minded people in our museum community.

An IRA rollover gift is a tax-exempt distribution made directly from your IRA to your charity of choice. Qualifying individuals can make charitable gifts using pre-tax IRA assets rather than taking a distribution, paying income taxes and using after-tax assets to make a charitable gift. The gift can be up to $100,000 and does not show up on your tax return as income, which can avoid other tax consequences for higher income donors and also benefits lower income individuals who use the standard deduction because they don’t have enough itemized deductions.

In order to qualify for the IRA rollover, you must be 70 1/2 or older. It is a great way for you to make a gift to support the causes you care about, and this gift can be used to meet your required minimum distribution (RMD).

This provision can truly enable generous individuals to make the gift of a lifetime. It is estimated that Americans have $5.3 trillion currently invested in IRAs. Thanks to decades of deliberate saving, some of today’s retirees have more money in their IRAs than they need for daily living expenses and long-term care. And when these assets are passed on to their children they will be taxed at an ordinary income rates. Now charitable individuals and couples can make generous gifts to their favorite charities directly from their IRA tax free in 2016 and for the foreseeable future.

Please note: I am not a tax advisor, CPA or an attorney. I am simply bringing this up as a conversation starter within your organization. Please have a discussion with a professional in this field to see how this could affect your museum.

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The National Association of Automobile Museums is a professional center of excellence for automobile museums and affiliated organizations that supports, educates and encourages members to operate according to professional standards of the museum industry.

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What’s Trending: The New and the Next for Museums

Best practices and new opportunities are always evolving in the museum field, making it challenging to keep up. Trends in corporate partnerships, working with non-profit boards, interpretation, advocacy, and social media can offer new opportunities for museum staff and volunteers. How do we fold them into our work? In an age where relevance is mandatory, museums need to be nimble enough to respond to trends that will connect them with new audiences, and leverage their programs and unique collections to maximize engagement. Participate in the 2016 NAAM Conference to network with your peers and help shape the future of our museums.

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Early Bird Registration Deadline: April 5, 2016

The early bird conference registration fee for NAAM members is $300. When and Where: The 2016 Annual Conference will be hosted by the Seal Cove Auto Museum and Owl’s Head Transportation Museum in Bar Harbor, Maine, May 3-6, 2016. The conference starts on Tuesday, the 3rd, with a Welcome Reception at the Atlantic Oceanside Event Center from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. and concludes on Friday night, the 6th, with the closing banquet and NAAMY Awards Ceremony. The conference features excellent sessions and tours.  It will be a great professional development and networking opportunity. Please see the conference schedule and registration form.

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Atlantic Oceanside Hotel & Events Center

A Hotel Room Block is reserved for the conference. The room block expires on April 2, 2016, but make reservations early since rooms are in demand during this period. The room block dates begin on Monday, May 2, 2016, to accommodate our attendees traveling from the west. Also, the hotel is extending the conference room rate for three days before and after the block for anyone who would like to visit the area.

Hotel Room Block Info:

Group Number: NAAM050316; Room Rate: $99 (plus 8% room tax)
Atlantic Oceanside Hotel & Conference Center, 119 Eden Street, Bar Harbor, Maine 04609

Reservation Office: (800) 336-2463, Hotel: (207) 288-5801

Room Guarantee: Room deposits (one night’s room rate) are due at the time the reservation is made. Deposits are refundable, less a $20 administrative fee, 7 or more days prior to arrival date. Cancellations with 6 days prior to arrival are subject to a fee equal to one night’s lodging.

Additional Information

The closet local airport is the “Bar Harbor Airport” located just off the island in Trenton, 12 miles from Bar Harbor. The closest international airport is in Bangor, 50 miles from Bar Harbor. There are no regional bus routes that go to Bar Harbor, but the Bar Harbor Shuttle ( and Downeast Transportation ( provide service between Bangor and Bar Harbor. Local taxi services are available in Bar Harbor.

Weather: Average lows in Bar Harbor in May run in the mid-forties, with average highs in the mid-sixties. But there’s a saying in New England, “If you don’t like the weather, wait a minute!” Weather in early May in Maine can vary widely, from below-freezing nights to glorious spring-like days, so be prepared for anything!

Conference Dress: Attire for the duration of the conference is business casual, including the concluding banquet and awards ceremony.

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About Bar Harbor

Bar Harbor, Maine is the best known town on Mount Desert Island (MDI) with an approximate population of 5,235 residents. Included within the municipality are the villages of Bar Harbor, Hulls Cove, Salisbury Cove, and Town Hill. The main draw is nearby Acadia National Park, one of the most popular, yet smallest, National Parks in the system. Acadia boasts the tallest peak on the east coast, over 120 miles of trails, and a 44-mile carriage road system, closed to motorized traffic. But it’s the unique combination of lakes, mountains, and the rocky coastline of Maine that leave visitors to the Park breathless with wonder.

Some of the earliest tourists to the region were the “Rusticators”, the summer visitors of the early 1900s who fled to the “rustic” island from their luxurious homes in such cities as Boston, New York, and Philadelphia, to escape the heat and crowds. If the island served as a playground for these elite visitors, it also served as inspiration for many artists who also flocked to the island, particularly painters of the Hudson River School, like Thomas Cole and Frederic Church, glorifying MDI with their brushstrokes, and further encouraging others to visit the area.

Today Bar Harbor is more than a tourist destination. It is also an important research & education town, as the home to the Jackson Laboratories, the Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratories, as well as College of the Atlantic.

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Intersted in hosting a NAAM Conference?
Contact Wendell Strode


Deadline: March 4, 2016

Be sure to complete your entries for the NAAMY Award Competition by March 4, 2016. The process is simple, plus you can enter as many categories as you like and you many submit more than one entry in a category. Please see the attached NAAMY Awards Call for Entries brochure or access the brochure on the NAAM website ( under “About NAAM.”

Every one of our NAAM member museums is asked to enter to gain important recognition for your museum, which is a primary benefit of earning a NAAMY award. NAAMY’s increase your museum’s prestige not only with your Board and your members, but in your community. Also, they are a point of interest with donors and when applying for grants.

It’s the perfect, “positive” project to start off your year! Our new “Call for Entries” brochure and application were distributed via email to all NAAM members and is available on the NAAM website.

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Deadline: April 4, 2016

Apply Now: Each year NAAM offers scholarships to the Annual Conference to help members grow professionally through informative sessions and networking opportunities. The scholarship program is designed for museums with limited financial resources (annual budgets less than $500,000) to pay for their staff to attend the conference.

When: You can apply anytime and we encourage you to do so to take advantage of this great benefit. The deadline is April 4, 2016.

How: Please visit the NAAM website for scholarship criteria, guidelines and the online application (select Conferences, then Conference Scholarships.)

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Derek MooreA Younger Generation in a New Year… Is it Possible?
By Derek Moore
Crawford Curator of Transportation
Cleveland History Center

Museums are facing a big problem, low attendance. Why? Because it seems that younger generations are starting to think that museums are old, dusty, and stodgy, and they feel they can’t relate. But is this really the case? Unfortunately, it is. Sorry, but I am the hard facts kind of guy and, yes, I am going to throw it in all of our faces. But fear not, here are some thoughts I have on why we might have these problems, and some thoughts on how we might be able to address the situation.

Thought Number One:

Most of our museums have vehicles that most people can’t relate to. Is it interesting to see a 1905 Peerless in the Crawford Auto Aviation Museum…to some, yes, to others, no. Does that Peerless fit our mission at The Crawford? Yes, so it is good to have it in the collection, but not everyone wants to see it. Where am I going with this? Well, we need to get creative and bring our collections in to the modern day, while still sticking to our mission. What do the youth of America connect with and how does that work with our mission? Let’s get creative!

But, what is creative? Well, here at The Crawford, I have started brainstorming a list of more modern vehicles for the collection. One of the cars that made its way onto that list is a Chevrolet Volt, of which I have already discussed with a local owner the possible donation of one. Now a Volt is not a classic car and it’s no antique car, heck it wasn’t even built in Cleveland, but it is technologically significant (part of The Crawford’s mission) and the “green technology’ movement is something the younger generation relates to. Maybe even more creative than a Volt might be a Dodge Ram pickup? Well, while I was at Henry Ford Museum a 1998 Dodge Ram quad cab pickup was acquired for the collection. It is in the collection to discuss the changing idea of a pickup truck from a work vehicle to a family vehicle, which has happened recently enough that younger visitors can connect to that story. You can see both of these vehicles I just mentioned in most parking lots in America, but unless we bring these vehicles into our museums and relate their stories to the younger generations in a way they understand, we will always be a stodgy, old museum.

So, get creative, start thinking about vehicles and artifacts from the modern day that can bring your collection into the 21st century and relate to the visitors of today while still fulfilling your mission. Sometimes it is difficult to think about change, but it has to happen to survive.

Thought Number Two:

Now this is where I get a little crazy, maybe even out of hand, and I am sure I will hear about it, but it has to be said… We need to bring the younger generation into the field and we need to listen to their ideas. I personally feel like I am in a weird position because I no longer look at myself as the “younger generation” in the field, but I am one of the youngest transportation curators in this country. Now, I am not here to say that those of us that are already in the field are washed up and have no good ideas, but I know that I am already out of touch with what people 10 years younger than I am are interested in… I hope that doesn’t mean I’m washed up!

I have had the opportunity to work with some very talented staff here in Cleveland that are much younger than I am, and some of them have had really great ideas, others, no so much. But, one thing I have personally been irritated by in my short time in the field (and maybe after this article, very short time in the field) are phrases like, “We’ve already tried that” or “It doesn’t work that way.” Maybe the idea that younger staff member has is the same as one that has been tried before and didn’t work, but maybe, just maybe, they have a different approach to that idea that will work. A different approach that might just relate to the generation that staff member belongs to. Give it a shot; we are all looking for ways to bring more visitors to our museums, aren’t we? It might just work!

Hire some younger staff, encourage their creative ideas to bring visitors of younger generations in the doors, teach them museum professionalism, invest in them and hold on to them. They are the future of our museums and without them, museums won’t have a future.

Complaint letters, emails, and phone calls can be directed to:

Derek E. Moore
Crawford Curator of Transportation
Cleveland History Center
10825 East Blvd.
Cleveland, Ohio 44106
216-721-5722 x1511

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Lincoln Motor Car Heritage Museum, Hickory Corners, Michigan

Will observe its second annual homecoming on August 12-14, 2016 at the museum, which is located on the grounds of the Gilmore Car Museum campus. The museum was created through a collaboration between the Lincoln Motor Car Foundation and the four major Lincoln car clubs: Lincoln Owners Club, Lincoln Continental Owners Club, Lincoln-Zephyr Owners Club and Road Race Lincoln Registry. The latter is serving as host of the 2016 event.  All Lincolns are welcomed at the annual homecomings.

The weekend events include a barbecue, motoring trip to the W. K. Kellogg Manor House and Kellogg Wildlife Sanctuary, gala dinner, and, of course, a car show. Complete weekend details and registration forms are available on the museum’s web site:

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San Deigo MuseumSan Diego Automotive Museum, San Diego, California
The British Invasion

The San Diego Automotive Museum in Balboa Park is proud to announce the opening of its new exhibit The British Invasion. The exhibit will run until May 31, 2016. This exhibit highlights British automotive manufacturing since the 1930’s. The exhibit is enhanced with the cultural impact the British have also had on our fashion, music, and literature (the Beatles, Harry Potter, Twiggy, Downton Abbey, etc.)

This exhibit features a 1933 Austin Seven, 1937 MG VA Tourer, 1939 Lagonda

V12, 1948 Bentley (prototype), 1950 Jaguar Mark V Saloon, 1951 Jowett Jupiter (pictured), 1953 Jaguar XK 120, 1955 Triumph TR2, 1958 Austin A35, 1967 Austin Mini Cooper S, 1967 Austin London Cab FX4, 1967 Rolls Royce Phantom V, 1969 Jaguar E Type OTS, 1970 Morgan 4/4 1600, 1971 Jenson Interceptor, 1972 TVR Vixen, and a 2005 Aston Martin. The London taxi was owned and driven by Frank Sinatra. The Rolls Royce Phantom was used by Queen Elizabeth, Princess Grace of Monaco, and several American astronauts.

The museum’s annual fundraiser is centered around this exhibit. That event will happen Saturday, March 12th from 6:00 – 9:00 PM. Call 619-398-0301 for information or tickets.

Regular hours are 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM (the last admission at 4:30 PM) The museum is closed Thanksgiving and Christmas. Admission prices are as follows: $9.00 for adults, $6 for seniors (65 and over), $5 students with ID, $4 children ages 6 – 15. Children under the age of 6 are admitted free of charge. The museum is free to all San Diego County residents and military with ID on the 4th Tuesday of each month. A small $2 fee is charged on some exhibits during Free Tuesday throughout the year.

The museum is located at 2080 Pan American Plaza, Balboa Park. Phone 619-231-2886. Website is

The San Diego Automotive Museum receives funding from the City of San Diego through the Commission for Arts and Culture and the County of San Diego’s Community Enhancement Program.

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New Executive DirectorStudebaker National Museum, South Bend, Indiana


Studebaker National Museum Board of Trustees President, Michael Kendzicky, announces the hiring of Patrick Slebonick as Executive Director, of the Studebaker National Museum, effective February 1, 2016.

Prior to joining the Studebaker National Museum, Mr. Slebonick served as Associate Director at the Muscarelle Museum of Art in Williamsburg, Virginia. In that role he oversaw development, marketing, volunteer engagement, and outreach efforts for the Museum. He also served as project manager for numerous award-winning publications produced by the Muscarelle. Prior to becoming Associate Director at the Muscarelle Museums, Mr. Slebonick served as Manager of Institutional Advancement as well as Education and Media Specialist for the same institution.

Patrick Slebonick received his B.A. in Government followed by his M.Ed. with a concentration in the Social Foundations of Education from the University of Virginia. Mr. Slebonick then completed his JD from the William & Mary School of Law where he received the Mary Siegrist Hinz Fellowship before passing the Virginia Bar.

Mr. Slebonick also served as Program Director for the William & Mary School of Law Chapter of the Marshall-Brennan Constitutional Literacy Project. The program provided local high school students with engaging Constitutional Law lessons focused on the Bill of Rights. Patrick also held the position of Adjunct Professor of Law at William & Mary.

Current Board of Trustees President, Michael Kendzicky said, “Pat’s fresh perspective, museum experience, and enthusiasm, will help the Museum make a successful transition to a new leader.”

The Studebaker National Museum is located at 201 So. Chapin St., just west of downtown South Bend.  It is open Mon.-Sat., 10am-5pm, and Sun. Noon–5pm.   Admission is $8 for adults, $6.50 for seniors over 60, and $5 for youth ages 6-18.  For more information, please call the Museum at (574) 235-9714 or toll free at (888) 391-5600 or visit our website at For an additional cost, visitors may tour the exhibits and Oliver Mansion at The History Museum, which adjoins the Studebaker National Museum.

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World ForumWorld Forum for Motor Museums
September 12th to 16th, 2016

In September 2016 the Auto & Technik MUSEUM SINSHEIM (Germany) will host the 13th World Forum for Motor Museums. There will be workshops, interesting papers and exchange of ideas. Trips to other museums (Mercedes-Benz & Porsche) and heritage locations are planned. More information:

Auto Literature, Toys

I have a collection car advertising brochures, mostly from the 1960s. I am willing to donate them to any museum that may want them. I also have some metal Dinky toy cars to donate. David McCoy,

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