Nina Simon is Executive Director of the Santa Cruz Museum of Art & History (MAH), which has gone through a radical transformation over the past year to become a thriving central gathering place.
Simon teaches radical exhibition design in the University of Washington
Museology graduate program and writes the popular blog Museum 2.0. Previously, Simon worked as an independent consultant to over 100
museums and cultural centers around the world, focusing on participatory
community engagement. She served as curator at The Tech Museum of
Innovation in San Jose, Calif., and was the Experience Development
Specialist at the International Spy Museum in Washington, D.C.
Museums can be incredible catalysts for social change. But they're not
there yet. Right now, they're often seen as elitist organizations
serving an diminishing percentage of our population. We can change that
by embracing participatory culture and opening up to the active, social
ways that people engage with art, history, science, and ideas
today. We're doing it in Santa Cruz and it has absolutely transformed
our museum into a thriving community institution.