Rob Lukens

Museum Studies Alumni

Rob Luken's first experience in museums came as a volunteer in the Chester County Historical Society's museum twenty years ago. He brings to CCHS a combined passion for American History and history education along with museum leadership experience. At CCHS, he oversees day to day operations, is responsible for strategic management, provides fundraising and financial direction, and liaises with the organization's Board of Trustees.

Before taking on CCHS's presidency, Dr. Lukens was the Exhibits and Education Director at the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center in Washington D.C. At the Capitol Visitor Center he was responsible for overseeing the 16,500 square foot exhibition E Pluribus Unum – Out of Many, One and educational initiatives for the center's more than 2 million annual visitors.

Prior to his experiences in Washington, Dr. Lukens led Historic Yellow Springs in Chester Springs, Chester County as Executive Director for four years. During his tenure, the organization underwent a merger process through which it merged with the adjacent Chester Springs Studio art center. He previously served as Chief Curator and later Head of Collections at the Chemical Heritage Foundation in Philadelphia, where he was responsible for implementing a new collections and exhibitions program from 2003-2005. Dr. Lukens worked at CCHS from 1998-2003 as the organization's Collections Manager, supporting exhibitions such as Just Over the Line: Chester County and the Underground Railroad and various collections initiatives.

Rob earned his Master's in American History from the University of Tennessee, completed his Ph.D. at Temple University. From 1997-1999, he was enrolled in the American History Ph.D. and Museum Studies programs at the University of Delaware.

He has authored several academic articles on American cultural history, over 75 articles on local history for Chester County's Daily Local News, and co-authored Yellow Springs with HYS colleague Sandy Momyer. For several years, Rob also served as Vice-President of the Board of Trustees for the Chester County Conference and Visitors Bureau, the Chester County's official tourism bureau.

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Museum Studies SWAT

Are you interested in learning more about hosting a January SWAT team at your site? Please email us for a self-nomination form, and details. museumstudies@udel.edu

What is SWAT?

Each year during the winter break, MSST program director Dr. Kasey Grier leads a group of students to small museum for two weeks of hands-on experience. Projects include inventorying, cataloging and rehousing items. Students follow up these activities with detailed reports outlining thier work and providing recommendations for future collections management activities.

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