Rob Vaughan Leaves a Legacy at VAM
Rob Vaughan was arguably just as important an influence for VAM as he was for the humanities in Virginia. Long a champion of the entire museum community, Rob worked tirelessly for many years as founder and president of the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities (now Virginia Humanities) with VAM's previous executive director, Margo Carlock to ensure that VAM would have stable funding, and that together, our organizations would make a lasting impact on the museums throughout the Commonwealth.
By working together, financial support was secured for VAM from the Commonwealth even after the General Assembly eliminated non-state agency funding in the 1990s. Our partnership over the years has featured securing three Smithsonian Museum on Main Street exhibitions for travel in Virginia as well as a National Endownment for the Humanities Picturing America project. And VAM’s Fundamentals Forum, one of our most popular and impactful programs for small museums that was offered between 1996 and 2010, was only possible because of Virginia Humanities and Rob’s personal support.
When Rob retired several years ago, it was the passing of an era. With Matthew Gibson steadfastly at the helm, Virginia Humanities is poised to reach new heights, and to inspire future generations to love the humanities as much as Rob did. But Rob will always be a part of the heart of the organization he founded, and his legacy will live on for generations to come, both at VAM and at Virginia Humanities.
Photo Credit: VAM 1980 Annual Meeting