Liz Williams Named Director at Gadsby’s Tavern Museum
Innovative Museum Professional to lead Early American Tavern Museum
The Office of Historic Alexandria (OHA), the comprehensive public history agency of the City of Alexandria, Virginia, is pleased to announce that Liz Williams has been appointed as Director of the City owned-and operated Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, located at 134 N. Royal Street in Old Town, Alexandria. Ms. Williams has been employed at OHA since 2004, serving as Acting Director of Gadsby’s Tavern Museum for the past year and as Assistant Director at the Gadsby’s Tavern and the Stabler-Leadbeater Apothecary Museums for over a decade. Both institutions are accredited by the American Alliance of Museums (AAM) as part of OHA’s “museum system,” one of eight municipal museum systems in the United States to be accredited by the AAM. Ms. Williams was one of the primary OHA staff members to coordinate the AAM Self-study application, prepared over several years that resulted in the accreditation award in 2012. The previous Director at Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, Gretchen Bulova, was promoted to Deputy Director of OHA in 2016 and both women are well-respected for their teamwork, leadership, and creativity.
Ms. Williams is a graduate of Mary Washington College in Fredericksburg, Virginia, where she earned her B.A. in Historic Preservation and was honored with the Susan Jefferson Ford Award in Historic Preservation for superior academic achievement and significant contributions to historic preservation in the Fredericksburg area. She then went on to receive her graduate degree at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C., where she earned an M.T.A. in Tourism Administration, concentrating on heritage tourism. She has been a guest lecturer at that university since 2014, and has presented numerous times at conferences held annually by the National Trust for Historic Preservation (NTHP) and the Virginia Association of Museums.
Previous to her employment with the City of Alexandria, Ms. Williams worked as Associate Director for Business Operations and as Business Manager at Woodlawn and Frank Lloyd Wright’s Pope-Leighey House in Fairfax County, Virginia, operated by NTHP. Earlier, she worked as a Program Assistant at NTHP headquarters in Washington, D.C. where she assisted with the coordination of the innovative Preservation Leadership Training programs sponsored by the nation’s premier historic preservation organization. Her experience with NTHP in both museum administration, tourism, and historic preservation has proven to be a major asset to OHA, both at the departmental and institutional level, and Gadsby’s Tavern Museum continues to be recognized for its superior management, creative programming, and engaging special event activities.
In response to Ms. Williams’ selection as Museum Director by the Evaluation Committee, OHA Director J. Lance Mallamo stated, “In her exceptional service to OHA museums over the years, Liz Williams has consistently exceeded expectations through her knowledge and commitment. The City of Alexandria looks forward to her continued guidance and leadership in maintaining the highest levels of excellence, and best practices in the museum profession at Gadsby’s Tavern Museum.”