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NAAM E-NEWS – June 2017, Volume 19, Issue 2

May 31, 2017 in Newsletter

NAAM E-NEWS - June 2017, Volume 19, Issue 2

In This Issue

President's Message

By: MaryAnn Porinchak

Greetings NAAM Members.

We are now nearly half way through 2017 and for many of us the summer months are already bearing down fiercely. It is without a doubt the busiest time for us as museum professionals—it is the season in which there is little time for reflection. No matter where you call home, it seems the activity level is at a full roar during the summer but it is also the most opportune time to understand and recognize the legacy we leave and the significance of our work as museum professionals. I truly hope all of you found the NAAM Conference in Tacoma, Washington refreshing and beneficial. The LeMay family (including all of their volunteers and staff) deserve our heartiest congratulations on a job well done. I know I came home feeling energized and focused on implementing many of the concepts that were presented. No matter what your position there was something for everyone if you came to receive.

This year, instead of getting caught up in the hustle and bustle to meet deadlines, open exhibits and conduct tours, I urge all of you to take the time to step back, breath deep and take in the magnificence of your work. Look intently at your surroundings, listen to the world around you as guests and visitors enjoy that which you labor tirelessly to preserve and protect. After all, in what other vocation is there such an opportunity to engage individuals from all walks of life and all corners of the world? Resist being so swept away by the busyness that you forget your purpose and vision. Take time to enjoy conversations with those around you for it is at these moments that you will plainly realize your own legacy and purpose. Time passes too quickly these days to let one moment slip by unnoticed. You have talents and skills that only you can contribute, you have a passion that is yours alone. I urge you to use it for the betterment of your respective facilities.

In speaking of improving our facilities, we talk of legacy gifts with our donors and contributors. We know how important they are to an organization and what they mean for the future of our collections and institutions. However, as museum professionals we rarely examine our own legacies. The legacy we leave for future generations is not necessarily one of financial wealth although it could include wealth. The legacy we leave that is so important, is the one of professional standards and excellence. Our legacy is the decision we make each day to ensure the proper methods, policies and procedures are in place for the future of our collections and organizations. This is a legacy of building solid foundations into our operations that will withstand the test of time and economic storms. The legacy we leave as professionals in our respective museums is one that ensures collections across the country remain intact and preserved long after we are gone. Our legacies should include concepts that embrace changes in technology and administrations while remaining solid in core values. It is planning and preparing for the future no matter what may lie ahead. It is a legacy of ensuring the path is clear to the best practices in all aspects of museum management. It is for all these reasons that the National Association of Automobile Museums exists—to support our membership at every level and in every area of collection management.

No matter what your staff position you have the ability to leave a legacy of excellence for the future but it requires gaining knowledge, planning, and sharpening your skills. We cannot afford to be complacent—our decisions will directly impact the future of historical artifacts. The National Association of Automobile Museums offers support, education and encouragement to all member organizations to operate according to professional standards of the museum industry. It offers an affordable conference where members can gain knowledge and insight with web access after the conference. NAAM offers networking and pertinent resources through the online community and website. The National Association of Automobile Museums is a primary resource for the automobile museum community and enhances public awareness of automobile museums as valuable cultural institutions.

All of these benefits are available to you as a NAAM member. Draw on the experience of colleagues skilled in their respective disciplines through networking; sharpen your skills by utilizing and putting into practice what is learned from associates and lecturers. Every day we are gifted with ideas and imaginations—put them to use in your position. Find ways to improve and perfect the tasks for which you are charged and always consider how the decisions made today will affect the future of collections tomorrow. Everyone has something to contribute for the future—I urge you to take the time to consider your legacy and utilize the resources of NAAM.

Best wishes,

Mary Ann Porinchak

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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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On the Road: Telling History Via Many Different Routes


We would like to sincerely thank the LeMay Family Collection for hosting an amazing conference, “On the Road: Telling History Via Many Different Routes” for NAAM in the Seattle/Tacoma area. The conference schedule was packed with informative sessions and two days of traveling to many remarkable private collections and museums. There were 76 attendees, representing 47 organizations, 12 Sessions, 9 tours with an additional 4 optional self-guided tours.

We especially want to thank Trudy Cofchin, Eric LeMay, and Stacy Rushton and their staff and volunteers for arranging, organizing, and running the 2017 annual conference. Their attention to an endless amount of details resulted in a fluid and truly fantastic conference. Finally, we would like to express our sincere gratitude to Mrs. LeMay, Doug LeMay, and Mary Shaw for warmly opening their homes and collections to us, as part of their family, and sharing their many stories and experiences.

C4 PHOTO C5 PHOTOPhotos courtesy of Jarrid Roulet, Veit Automotive Foundation

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Special Thank You to Our Supporters

We would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to all of our sponsors. Our conference was an enormous success with the generous support we received from our sponsors.

  • Hagerty- Official insurance provider of the National Association of Automobile Museums
  • Cosmopolitan Motors & Lucky Collector Car Auctions- Wine & Bar service at dinner on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday
  • Group Delphi- Dinner Thursday evening
  • Adam’s DJ Service
  • Bose
  • Motor Car Memories Inc.

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NAAM is dedicated to helping its members grow professionally through informative annual conferences and networking opportunities. To fulfill this goal, NAAM offers up to 3 conference scholarships each year. The scholarship program is designed for museums with limited financial resources to pay for their staff to attend (annual budgets under $500,000). Awards included $1,000 for travel expenses, plus complimentary conference registration. These valuable scholarships are made possible thanks to our generous sponsorships.

CONGRATULATIONS to those who received a scholarship for the 2017 Conference:

Joshua Conrad, Executive Director,
Early Ford V8 Foundation Museum, Auburn, IN

Butch Papon, Curator of Exhibits & Collections,
Kansas City Automotive Museum, Olathe, KS

Carol Vogt, Executive Director,
Classic Car Club of America Museum, Hickory Corners, MI

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Congratulations to the museums that won NAAMY Awards at the 2017 Annual Conference for their 2016 programs, events and activities. This is a prestigious honor and their award represents a commitment to excellence and sets a standard within our field. Great job!

The annual NAAMY awards competition honors the work of nonprofit automotive transportation museums. The awards recognize industry leaders for achievement, professionalism and creativity. They are designed to further promote professionalism in automotive museum managerial, curatorial, educational and promotional work.

DIVISION I (institutions with an annual budget less than $300,000)

Events & Public Promotions

1st Place: Kansas City Automotive Museum, People’s Choice Car Show

2nd Place: BMW Car Club of America Foundation, The Vintage Open House

3rd Place: National Packard Museum, Museum Merrymaking

Films & Videos

3rd Place: Viet Automotive Foundation, Veit Video Programs

Interpretive Exhibits

1st Place: Seal Cove Auto Museum, Auto Wars: Then & Now

2nd Place: National Packard Museum, What’s In Your Barn (16th Ann. Antique Motorcycle Exhibit)

3rd Place: BMW Car Club of America Foundation, BMW Z3 Roadster

DIVISION II (institutions with an annual budget greater than $300,000)

Collateral Materials

3rd Place: Studebaker National Museum, Hoosier Made: World Driven

3rd Place: National Corvette Museum, National Corvette Museum and Corvette Assembly Plant / "Tourist" Brochure

Educational Programs

1st Place: Gilmore Car Museum, The Model T Driving School Experience

2nd Place: National Automobile Museum, Harrah Collection, History Symposium: The 1960s: Institution, Revolution, Evolution

2nd Place: World of Speed Motorsports Museum, World of Speed Education Programs

3rd Place: National Corvette Museum, ME-chanics

Events & Public Promotions

1st Place: National Corvette Museum, Corvette Cave-In: Exhibit Opening

1st Place: Owls Head Transportation Museum, New England Auto Auction™

2nd Place: Stahl's Automotive Foundation, Hat Trick for Heroes Event for 2016

3rd Place: Owls Head Transportation Museum, Barnstormers Ball Fundraising Gala

Films & Videos

1st Place: Gilmore Car Museum, The Gilmore Car Museum: 50 Year Legacy

2nd Place: Owls Head Transportation Museum, Milestone 40: A Year at the Owls Head Transportation Museum

3rd Place: National Corvette Museum, Heritage Series: The One and Only 1983 Corvette

Interpretive Exhibits

1st Place: Owls Head Transportation Museum, WOMEN WHO DARE: Pioneering Women of Transportation

2nd Place: National Corvette Museum, Corvette Cave-In: The Skydome Sinkhole Experience

3rd Place: Gilmore Car Museum, The Golden Age of Sports Cars

Newsletters & Magazines

1st Place: Owls Head Transportation Museum, “Strut & Axle Magazine”

2nd Place: National Automobile Museum, Harrah Collection, “Precious Metal Magazine”

3rd Place: National Corvette Museum, “America's Sports Car Magazine”

Web Designs

2nd Place: Studebaker National Museum, Studebaker National Museum Website

*Note: Entry into a category with three or fewer entries does not guarantee an award or an automatic first place, certain percentage levels based on judge’s combined scores must be reached. Ties are acceptable based on percentage level.

The 2016 NAAMY Awards were organized and prepared by Brittany Williams (Gilmore Car Museum, Collections Registrar) and Christine Bobco (NAAM Administrative Assistant). The NAAMY Awards presentation was prepared by Brittany and presented by Christine and Derek Moore (National Corvette Museum, Curator) at the NAAM Conference held at the LeMay Family Collection in Tacoma, Washington on Friday, March 24, 2017.


  • 38 total entries
  • 7 of the 8 categories were entered
    • Books/Catalogs received no entries
    • Events/Public Promotions (8), Newsletters/Magazines (7), and Interpretive Exhibits (12) were the most entered categories
    • Web Design (1), Collateral Materials (2), and Film/Video (4) and Education Programs (4) were the least entered categories


  • 15 participating institutions (12 museums, 3 clubs/foundations)
    • 10 Division I entries
    • 9 Division II entries


  • 9 judges from both Michigan and Ohio institutions
  • 2 of the 9 judges were “digital” judges and judged entries sent to them online


  • 8 – 1st Place winners
  • 9 – 2nd Place winners
  • 10 – 3rd Place winners
  • 11 entries did not place
  • 3 entries received perfect scores (100%)
  • 1st Place awards were ordered from Sparta Pewter, 2nd and 3rd Place award certificates were printed in house

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Join the new NAAM Facebook Group! This space is in conjunction with the NAAM Online Community and is a great place to share successes and challenges, gather ideas, and network with member museums. Go to

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California Automobile Museum- Sacramento, California
California Automobile Museum Gets New Roof

I must start with a cliché and paraphrase Dickens: This summer at the California Automobile Museum will be the best of times and it will be the worst of times.

Much of the NAAM community has heard us talk about the condition of our Museum’s building over the years. Our 72,000 square foot building has next to no temperature control and zero insulation, but the worst part is the roof - it leaks during any rainstorm. The leaks are not insignificant; we put dozens of buckets around, many cars are moved out of the way or covered to protect them, and mopping is a fact of life.

However, we are close to completing a capital campaign to fund the replacement of our roof and construction is slated to start this summer! Factors beyond our control (such as asbestos since the roof was built in the 1950s with a patchwork of repairs) means that the price has been driven up but the new roof will still have untold benefits for our Museum.

A new roof will of course protect our collection infinitely better. Our visitor experience will increase dramatically in winter without the rain but also in the summer because the roof material will prevent the building from heating up as much. The building itself will look more attractive from the outside which can only improve our image in the community. The California Automobile Museum has been talking about new construction, moving locations, and building improvements for over a decade, so this success will be good for the morale of staff and volunteers and supporters.

So, this is why it is the best of times. As the curator, I have new hope and opportunity for the future of our collection and displays. But it also means I get the pleasure of figuring out a giant puzzle of moving cars to protect them from the construction. Did I mention that we plan to stay open to the public for most if not all of the construction period? Hence the worst of times.

The construction process has actually already started – in the spring we were making repairs to our trusses with giant, heavy, metal bolts. And since no one wanted a car to be below or near those giant bolts, every time work was done on an area, all nearby cars were moved.

This required coordination between myself, our facilities manager, the volunteer project manager (we are very lucky to have a retired structural engineer looking this all over for us), our custodial manager (who helps move our cars), a small team of volunteers, and many other parties. Owners of vehicles on loan needed to be contacted. The locations of repairs had to be carefully orchestrated around events and programs. Cars near that week’s repairs had to be moved on the Tuesday morning for that week, and then moved back (if possible) on Friday morning. This went on for about two months where cars were constantly in the wrong place in the museum, confusing docents and visitors alike.

I can only imagine how much more complicated it is going to be during the actual replacement of the roof. At the same time, I am also working to make as many improvements to our displays as possible during construction. However, I can only speculate and try to lay groundwork for things to go smoothly – we will not be meeting with the contractor’s project manager for another couple of weeks. Until then, I must wait anxiously.

As of writing this, we have approximately 97% of our “Raise the Roof” fundraising goal. Despite a long and tricky summer for the Museum and me, things are definitely looking up for our future.

  • Carly Starr, Curator, California Automobile Museum

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Automobile Driving Museum - El Segundo, California
Women in Speed

The Automobile Driving Museum is excited to announce the first “Women in Speed” panel and banquet on July 8th, 2017, in conjunction with Collector Car Appreciation Day!

Shirley “Cha Cha” Muldowney, Lyn St. James, Paula Murphy, Jessi Combs and a few more women who will be confirmed, will be joining us at the museum for a wonderful day of meet & greets, signatures for fans and an evening banquet dinner with a panel moderated by Jack Beckman.

Their racing cars will be present and “fired” up and we will celebrate the bravery and exceptional dedication and determination these women offered to the sport of racing.

We hope some of you may be able to join us if you are in Southern CA during this time as it will be a memorable event!

- Tara Hitzig, Executive Director, Automobile Driving Museum

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AACA Museum – Hershey, Pennsylvania
Detroit Underdogs to Take Center Stage at AACA Museum this Summer!

underdogs photo


The AACA Museum is set to bring some under-appreciated collector vehicles to center stage with the new Detroit Underdogs Exhibit that will run from May 13 through August 27, 2017.

Readers of Hemmings Classic Car magazine are very familiar with the column "Detroit Underdogs," which focuses attention on the often overlooked, under-appreciated and easily attainable cars we fondly recall from our youth. Conceived by Executive Editor Richard Lentinello and columnist Milton Stern, this series of articles feature cars that were very popular in their day but have lost their luster through the passage of time such as the Ford Granada, Buick Apollo, and Rambler American. The AACA Museum is excited to collaborate with Milton Stern and Hemmings in bringing this exhibit to life here in Hershey, PA for everyone to enjoy.

The Detroit Underdogs exhibit, like the column, will shine a light on the cars that were the bread and butter of the American car market and have emerged as "underdogs" in the classic car market, examples of which include: post-war Plymouths, Packard 200s and the last of the large Mercurys. These cars are great choices for those seeking an understanding of the automobile's role in history as well as those wishing to enter the old car hobby in an affordable way. Featured vehicles on view in the gallery will include a 1970 Ford Maverick 2- door coupe and a 1981 AMC Concord 2-door sedan. Visitors will also have the opportunity to enjoy reading a variety of "Detroit Underdogs" columns in addition to enjoying the vehicles displayed.

The Museum welcomes columnist Milton Stern as guest curator for this exhibit. A native of Newport News, Virginia, and a Christopher Newport University graduate, Milton Stern has made his home in the DC Metro region for the past 20 years. He has been a writer since many of the cars he highlights were introduced and a car guy his entire life. A history and trivia buff, Milton enjoys relaying obscure facts about underappreciated cars to anyone who will listen. You can read more about his writing at The AACA Museum would also like to acknowledge and thank Hemmings Executive Editor, Richard Lentinello, for his help and cooperation for what will prove to be an informative and interesting exhibit!

Other featured exhibit this summer will include Garage Finds: Unrestored Treasurers that Survived Time focused on the fact that vehicles are only original once and will share some interesting stories in the life of these cars and motorcycles. Camaro & Firebird 50th Anniversary exhibit will showcase examples of these iconic American vehicles as they celebrate a 50-year milestone this year.

- Nancy Gates, Director of Marketing & Communications, AACA Museum

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Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum – Auburn, Indiana
Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum Announces Donation

The Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum was recently donated a special 1923 Stutz Speedway Four roadster. This fully restored Stutz Speedway Four roadster is one of only a handful known to remain. The Stutz is on display in the Lincoln Financial Group Foundation The Cars of Indiana Gallery.

This 1923 Stutz is powered by an 88 horsepower four-cylinder T-head engine. The wheelbase measures 130 inches. When new, the roadster cost $2,950.

Known for its very fast top speed of 80 miles per hour and powerful engine, the Stutz Speedway Four series was a popular offering. Coming at a time when Stutz needed sales to move design and produce six-cylinder engines, the Speedway Four suffered low production and low sales.

The Stutz was graciously donated to the museum by Rick L. and Vicki L. James of Fort Wayne, Indiana.

  • Kelby Park, Visitor Experience Manager, Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum

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Wheels O’ Time Museum – Dunlap, Illinois

wheels photoWheels O’ Time Museum of Dunlap, Illinois celebrated opening day on May 3rd with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. This is the 35th season of serving the public in central Illinois. We have grown from one building serving our visitors to four displaying everything from Abraham Lincoln’s axe head to a zither, but mostly antique and collector cars, of course. We are open 6 months a year and have over 70 enthusiastic volunteers. Check out

Shown at the ribbon-cutting are President Gary Bragg and Past President John H Parks, the founders, plus Wheels O’ Time staff. John is 102 years old!

  • Jan Bragg, Wheels O’ Time Museum

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Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum – Auburn, Indiana
Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum semi-annual newsletter,
The Accelerator, wins prestigious Golden Quill Award!

For many years, the annual Golden Quill Award presented by Old Cars Weekly News & Marketplace has brought recognition to numerous publications in the old car hobby, and continues to be a source of pride for winners. Submitted publications are judged for accuracy, style and presentation; along with quality of human interest, technical, historical, event and advertising content writing.

“It is important that club publications show growth,” adds Angelo Van Bogart, editor, Old Cars Weekly. “The advances in printing have made quality graphics and color renditions very affordable. Story selection and content is another factor that needs attention, since competition between club publications seems to become stiffer each year. Congratulations to the winners.”

Originally published by the Auburn Automobile Company, The Accelerator was a publication sent to Auburn dealers and distributors. Published monthly and sometimes quarterly from 1926 through 1935, The Accelerator contained useful information about sales, exports, racing competition, and people associated with the company.

When the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum was established in 1974, The Accelerator carried on its original mission adding news, commentary and historical content celebrating Auburn, Cord and Duesenberg marques - a continuous publication of distinction. The Museum members receive the publication semi-annually, one of the many perks of participating in the various Museum Member levels.

  • Kelby Park, Visitor Experience Manager,

Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum

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Reynolds- Alberta Museum- Request for Recommendations

We are undertaking on the construction of a new Collection Storage Facility at our site. We are trying to gather new ideas that could be implemented into the new building for the storage of land transportation artifacts (cars, trucks, motorcycles, snowmobiles, bicycles, etc.). The space has been dedicated as a publicly-accessible space, so there will likely be tours and programming in the space, but it will not be an exhibit space.

What I am ultimately looking for is images and ideas from any museum within the membership that has closed storage at their facility or off-site. Also, suggestions as to what to avoid and what to recommend for storage of land transportation artifacts as well.

Justin Cuffe, MCH
Curator, Transportation Collections
Reynolds-Alberta Museum

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