THOMASTON — The Board of Trustees of the Knox Museum has announced the appointment of a new executive director: native Mainer Ethan Yankura, of Camden.
“This appointment marks another positive milestone for the museum which has made a remarkable comeback from its near closure in the winter of 2017,” said the Museum, in a news release.
Since that time, almost all of the activities and basic maintenance of the museum have been run by a dedicated group of resolute board members and other eager volunteers, according to the Museum. With 2020 marking the third year of a positive balance sheet and with a clear vision of what it wants the museum to become as it approaches its second century, the newly expanded board decided it was time to put a professional back in charge.
Ethan Yankura brings 20 years of nonprofit experience to the Knox Museum, 17 years of which were spent at the Owls Head Transportation Museum, first as education director, and then as curator. At the Transportation Museum, Yankura worked with fundraising, donor relations, the collection database and documentation, tours, docents, youth and family activities, and daily operations.
Graduating from the University of Maine Farmington in Secondary Education and English, Yankura also has a strong background in education, serving for the past three years as executive director of Children’s House Montessori School in Camden. As director, he oversaw all aspects of running a busy school program with a board of directors, a large staff, and a building full of students.
“The Knox Board looks forward to this new partnership and an exciting year ahead,” said the Board. “Although the museum building is 90 years old and houses an even older 18th century collection of Knox furniture and memorabilia, a lot will be new next year at Montpelier: a new director, a new roof, a new boiler, a stronger online presence, more educational programs, and some new acquisitions. Henry and Lucy Knox and all of their guests will have a lot to look forward to in 2021.”