On behalf of the Board of Directors, Chair Rhonda Fried is pleased to welcome Sam McKelvey as the next President and CEO of the Fredericksburg Area Museum (FAM), a community institution committed to telling stories from the area’s earliest inhabitants through its contemporary residents. Following an extensive national search led by Good Insight, McKelvey begins his new role in early June.
“Sam has the experience and passion we need to expand FAM’s vital role in the region,” said Fried. “His deep understanding of history and museums as living, breathing parts of the community will ensure FAM’s success.
McKelvey joins FAM in the midst of a three-year project led by a scholar of African American history to produce exhibitions, programming, scholarship, workshops, and walking tours that contextualize the museum’s historical resources within the city. Voices Strong, Voices True: Our Untold Story is an ongoing initiative, with an extensive exhibition on local African American history planned to open in 2025.
“I am incredibly excited to begin my tenure with the Fredericksburg Area Museum,” said McKelvey. “The museum has laid the groundwork to create an example of what a museum can mean in a community. I look forward to building on the work that the talented staff, board, and volunteers have created.”
About Sam McKelvey
McKelvey was the Executive Director of the Menokin Foundation in Warsaw, Virginia for nearly seven years. During his tenure, he managed a re-branding of the site including a shift in mission; oversaw the planning and building of the award-winning Remembrance Structure; created new programming and expansion of recreational opportunities on site; and managed the $9 million Glass House Project. He is most proud of Menokin’s dedicated research during his tenure on the enslaved Menokin residents and their descendants, leading to the creation of the Menokin Descendant Collective.
Previously McKelvey managed multiple museums with Henrico County Historic Preservation and Museum Services, including Meadow Farm Museum, Dabbs House Mususem, Clarke-Palmore House, and Walkerton Tavern. McKelvey holds a BS in both Geography and History from James Madison University and a MA in History from Virginia Commonwealth University. He is a board member of the Virginia Association of Museums. McKelvey’s profound passion for museum management has come from seeing the change that cultural organizations can make in a community.
Chartered in 1985, the Fredericksburg Area Museum (FAM) has worked to preserve history, interpret cultural heritage, and build community in the heart of Fredericksburg. FAM connects people to the history of Fredericksburg and its surrounding counties by telling stories from its earliest inhabitants through its contemporary residents.
With commitment to inclusion, integrity, credibility, and relevance, FAM collects and preserves the region’s history and culture, while also facilitating an understanding and appreciation of how the past has shaped the community and the nation at large. FAM is uniquely positioned to ignite inspiring conversations and learning that forge a greater future. Visit www.famva.org to learn more.
About Good Insight
With a mission to connect good causes to great leaders, Good Insight is an executive search firm and governance consultancy serving the social sector. They plan leadership transitions, recruit talented senior executives, and strengthen boards of directors. Good Insight focuses on leadership searches for small and mid-sized nonprofits with a nationwide reach. To learn more, visit www.good-insight.org.