Museum Association of New York’s Conference Set for April 8-10, 2018

Museum professionals will gather at local art and cultural institutions and the Hyatt Regency in Rochester on April 8-10, 2018, for the annual Museum Association of New York (MANY) conference.

This year’s conference theme is “Visioning Change.” Museums in New York are changing—their collections and audiences are evolving, as are the tools and technologies they use. During carefully curated sessions, workshops, and programs, attendees will have a unique opportunity to meet, work with, and learn how their peers from around the state are reacting to this change.

Erika Sanger, the Executive Director of MANY, said of this year’s theme, “We’re reaching new audiences, learning how to tell difficult stories with our collections, and we’re creating partnerships that help us make room for difference.”

Museums represent one of the largest industries in New York State. The total annual economic impact of museums in New York State is $5.37 billion—which is equal to that of the state’s agricultural industries. Nationally, museums in New York are second only to California in their contributions to the United States economy. The museum industry in New York supports 61,796 important jobs within the state every year, providing billions of dollars in income and wages to New York State annually.

“MANY speaks for every museum equally, regardless of budget size, location, or content area,” says Sanger. In the past year, MANY has increased its membership to over 500 museums, zoos, botanical gardens, and historical societies in New York.

 “Visioning Change” programming and events will be held at museums in the Rochester area, including the Genesee Country Village & Museum, The Strong National Museum of Play, the Rochester Museum & Science Center, the Memorial Art Gallery, The Seneca Art & Culture Center, the Susan B. Anthony House & Museum, and the Seneca Park Zoo, among others.

Sunday, April 8’s programming will take place at the historic George Eastman Museum. Monday’s events will take place at the Hyatt Regency of Rochester. The Hyatt is home to a 20,000-square-foot meeting space, over 300 spacious hotel rooms, and offers its guests multiple dining options.

This year’s conference will feature an exciting array of roundtable discussions and educational programs developed by museum professionals in New York for museum professionals in New York. Museum directors, collections managers, historians, and emerging museum professionals will all have the chance to learn something new at the “Visioning Change” conference.

“I have never seen a conference that is more relevant, super progressive, and has such diverse programming on many levels,” said Susan Holland, the Executive Director of Historic Ithaca, of last year’s conference, hosted by MANY in Saratoga Springs.

On Saturday, April 7, pre-conference workshops will be offered at the Genesee Country Village & Museum (GCVM) in Mumford, New York. These will include immersive, living history-based programs and sessions designed to advance the work of museum educators. “The Rochester area is home to a wealth of museums,” said Becky Wehle, President and CEO of GCVM. “We are thrilled to be able to welcome our museum colleagues from across the state here to share our knowledge and innovative programs with them.”

Conference attendees will also have the chance to network with their peers at three special events hosted by MANY over the course of the conference. On Sunday, April 8, MANY will host a fundraising dinner at the Memorial Art Gallery. On Monday, April 9, conference-goers will be invited to attend a networking cocktail hour in the Hyatt’s newly renovated City Center Terrace bar, followed by a “Night of Play” at the Strong National Museum of Play.

The keynote address, “Change: Make or Become; What Will It Be?” will be delivered by James R. Hackney, Jr., the Senior Director of Development at Yale Divinity School. Keeping with the conference theme of “Visioning Change,” Hackney will discuss how museum professionals can embrace and create the change they want to see in their lives and institutions by working together. Closing remarks will be made by Dr. Joe Martin Lin-Hill, the Deputy Director of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, New York.

Complete conference details, including sessions, workshops, schedules, registration, and hotel information can be found online at

About MANY

The Museum Association of New York inspires, connects, and strengthens New York’s cultural community statewide by advocating, educating, collaborating, and supporting professional standards and organizational development. MANY ensures that New York State museums operate at their full potential as economic drivers and essential components of their communities.

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