The Alberta Museums Association's Community Engagement Initiative (CEI) works towards incorporating community engagement into the programs & services of the AMA and the general practices of the Alberta museum community. CEI supports museums by demonstrating the importance of community collaborations as a viable path toward sustainability. This blog provides tools & resources to support museums in creating & maintaining meaningful connections with communities.
Wednesday, 15 August 2018
Opening and Closing
Plenary Presenter Preview with Cathy Molloy
Cathy Molloy is the Director of Markham
Museum. She was born in Toronto and grew up in the Rouge Valley, specifically
on the edge of one of its wonderful ravines. Before returning to Markham Museum
and becoming its Director in 2008, Cathy worked as a Curator at both the Oshawa
Museum and Markham Museum, and was instrumental in raising funds to build the
Aurora Cultural Centre. Cathy’s interest in environmental issues goes back to
her teen years where she participated in the Boyd Conservation Archaeological
Summer Field School, which was the start of a life-long desire to better
understand how humans interact with the natural world.
Please provide a
brief overview of your role at Markham Museum and the work that your
The Vision of Markham
Museum is to "inspire a life-long curiosity, pride in, and care for, the
people, tangible heritage, places, lands and waterways of the City of Markham:
past, present and future.” Our mission is to “examine Markham by engaging
technologies developed and used by all human cultures to live in the natural
world; agriculture and food; material culture; engineering and environmental.
We will engage science, industry, history and the arts to understand how
Markham became what it is today and what its possible futures could be”.
Markham is, demographically, the most diverse city in
Canada. It is vital that the museum connect to the community as a whole.
Additionally, protection of the environment is a strategic priority of Markham
Council, and many
of the city’s sustainability initiatives relate directly to the goals of the
While the new LEED Gold building that houses Markham
Museum was being constructed, an archaeological excavation discovered a wealth
of pottery had once been on the land. The land sits on a clay bed of the Rouge
Watershed. The study of the pots eventually led to the development of the
environmental program direction at Markham Museum.
Why are you
interested in participating in the AMA’s 2018 Conference?
The Strategic Plan of Markham Museum is dependent on
partnerships with community groups, academic groups, other government agencies,
and local businesses. The theme of this Conference is Cultivating Connections, so the discussions are very relevant to our
work. As the program direction of Markham Museum is rooted in our natural
environment, I am interested in learning about the work that other museums and
organizations are doing.