Tag Archives: Lorraine McConaghy

Best Practices for Community Engagement

Community engagement has become an increasingly important aspect in state and local history as a strategy for increasing impact, gaining support, and becoming relevant.  The challenge for most organizations is that engagement can be so daunting and difficult, they don’t know where to begin, how to prioritize among several good ideas, or measure success.

Lorraine McConaghy, Deborah Schwartz, and Max van Balgooy at AASLH 2012.

At the recent AASLH annual meeting, I moderated a session on the experiences of two very different history organizations—the Brooklyn Historical Society and the Museum of History and Industry—whose work in community engagement is not well known in the field yet offer exemplary case studies to examine common strategies, how they should be modified to suit each place’s unique characteristics, and steps to avoid.

Deborah Schwartz, president of the Brooklyn Historical Society, described two programs that reach audiences that are typically underserved by museums: Continue reading