Who we are

Administration

Nelson Thomas leads the operations and oversees the administrative, educational and interpretation, curatorial, collections, exhibitions, and library & archive professional staff of the Stark Museum of Art, The W.H. Stark House, and the Benckenstein Library & Archive in support of the mission of the Nelda C. and H.J. Lutcher Stark Foundation. She holds a BA in biology with an art minor from Ohio Northern University, Ada, OH, and a MTSC (Masters in Technical and Scientific Communication) with an emphasis in environmental science from Miami University, Oxford, OH. She attended the 38th Seminar for Historical Administration (SHA) at Colonial Williamsburg, VA. Nelson Thomas has twenty-five plus years of experience in informal education and the museum field. Prior to joining the Stark Foundation in May 2013, she was Senior Director, Public Programs at the Indiana Historical Society and held a number of positions at the Outagamie County Historical Society in Appleton, WI. Her career has focused on interpretive planning; exhibition, program, and experience development; community collaboration and engagement; strategic planning; and evaluation.

Nelson Thomas served on the Seminar for Historical Administration (SHA, now History Leadership Institute) partners coordinating committee and as Seminar faculty. She has served as an American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) Council member and chair of the Leadership in History Awards committee, and currently serves on the Annual Meeting Program Committee. Locally she is a 2016 Leadership Southeast Texas (LSET) graduate, former Community Advisory Council Member for the Golden Triangle RSVP, and member of the Rotary Club of Orange. “I come from a family of avid and curious life-long learners, readers, and explorers. My passion is connecting people with ideas, stuff, and experiences so they can go on and do the same.

Collections & Exhibitions

Farrell holds a BA from Flagler College in St. Augustine,FL and an MFA in Sculpture from the University of Miami, in Miami, FL. Ryan comes to the Stark Museum of Art from the Lowe Art Museum at the University of Miami in Coral Gables Florida where he was the Senior Preparator. While in Miami Ryan also taught as an adjunct instructor at both the University of Miami and Broward College all while maintaining an active exhibition schedule of his own artworks. He also worked for Museo Vault, the leading art logistics company in South Florida where he was a lead installer and crate builder. As the Exhibitions and Collections Manager Ryan is responsible for designing and managing the exhibitions for the rotating and permanent galleries as well as caring for the collections at both the Art Museum and The W. H. Stark House.

Goss holds a BA in Archaeology from Washington University in St. Louis and an MA in Museology from the University of Washington. She comes to the Stark Museum of Art from Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, New York where she was the Associate Registrar. She previously worked at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West in Cody, Wyoming as the Associate Registrar, where she first became familiar with many of the artists in the Stark Museum’s collection. As the Stark Art and History Venues Registrar, she is responsible for all the objects in the collections at the Stark Museum of Art and The W.H. Stark House. In addition to managing paperwork and a database with records for every object, she cares for the collections so they can continue to be used to educate and enrich lives long into the future.

Library & Archive

Hartmann holds a BA in history from Grinnell College in Grinnell, IA. and a Master of Science in Information (MSI) from the University of Michigan with a concentration in Archives and Records Management. He has worked in libraries and archives for over twenty years. This includes work as an archivist at the Catholic Archives of Texas in Austin, Texas, and as a librarian/cataloger at the Victoria Public Library in Victoria, Texas. He also worked as Processing Archivist at the University of Texas at San Antonio. As Library and Records Manger, he administers the Eunice R. Benckenstein Library and Archive, which includes a research library for staff, volunteers, and visiting scholars. He also manages the historic records relating the Lutcher and Stark families, and the institutional records of the Nelda C. and H.J. Lutcher Stark Foundation. Hartmann has worked for the Foundation since October 2019.

Education

Danielson holds a BA in history and art history from Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, TX and a Master of Education in digital learning and leadership from Lamar University in Beaumont, TX. She began her career as a Program Coordinator for The Arc of Greater Beaumont, a non-profit that provides social and recreational opportunities for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. There she created and facilitated a weekly art education program, planned special events, and oversaw all monthly activities for the organization. Danielson joined the Stark Art & History Venues team in August 2018 as Volunteer & Operations Coordinator and became Public Engagement Manager in November 2020. Her job is to promote and increase access and awareness to the Stark Museum of Art, The W.H. Stark House, and the Eunice R. Benckenstein Library and Archive by developing digital content for broad audiences, creating welcoming spaces for on-site visitors, facilitating on and off-site programs, coordinating the Stark Reading Contest, and establishing/maintaining relationships with volunteers, the Art & History Community Advisory council, and community partners. “You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” Maya Angelou