Elaine Heumann Gurian

Consultant and Advisor

Elaine Heumann Gurian is a consultant and advisor to museums and visitor centers that are beginning, building, or reinventing themselves. She specializes in coaching government museums—large and small, local, national and international—that are undergoing significant change. In 2004 she received the Distinguished Service to Museums Award, America’s most important museum honor, presented by the American Federation of Museums. In 2006 Elaine Heumann Gurian was designated one of the 100 Centennial Honor Roll members by the American Federation of Museums.

Over the past 45 years, in addition to consulting, Elaine has served as acting director, Cranbrook Institute of Science; deputy director, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum; deputy director for public program planning, National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian Institution; deputy assistant secretary for museums, Smithsonian Institution; director of the Exhibit Center, Boston Children’s Museum; and director of education, Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston.

Elaine’s collected writings, Civilizing the Museum, was published by Routledge in 2006, and her publications are used in many museum studies programs. In 2008 Gurian was granted a Fulbright scholarship to Buenos Aires Argentina. She lectures and teaches nationally and internationally and has held many elected positions in the national and international museum communities.

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