Letter from the President
Welcome News on the Grant Front
By Charles F. Bryan, Jr., President and Chief Executive Officer
For some months, those of us who work in the history business have become accustomed to hearing a continuing litany of grim
financial news from colleagues across the country. Although we at the VHS have been more fortunate
than many institutions, we are seeing every day how difficult it is to bring in the revenue necessary to
maintain our ambitious programming. Given this climate, it was gratifying to receive word recently that
we have been awarded an important grant. In late September, the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), a
federal agency, announced that the Virginia Historical Society will receive one of its coveted general operating
support grants. The total award is for $112,500.
Nearly 850 museums nationwide, both large and small, ranging in
focus from art to history to science, applied in this year's grant competition. The agency gave out only 179 awards. Only seven
out of nearly forty Virginia applicants were successful. Among history museums in the state,
the VHS was one of only three to receive one of these highly prized grants.
In conferring these awards, the IMLS stressed the point that they were
given only to institutions that received the strongest ratings by their peers.
"A museum must excel in every aspect of its operations," the agency said,
"from collections care to public outreach to financial management. This
year's recipients are, indeed, among the best museums in the nation."
Because IMLS general operating support grants are unrestricted, this one will provide much-needed help as we continue
to craft our 2003 operating budget. This grant is a tribute to our fine professional staff, exceptional board, and supportive
membership, all of whom have contributed so much to making the VHS one of the top institutions of its kind in the country.
Posted October 2002
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