Knox Museum announces five additions to Board of Trustees

Fri, 08/28/2020 - 12:15pm

The General Henry Knox Museum has submitted the following:

Despite the constraints of this difficult year and the required 2020 closure of the Knox Museum, the General Henry Knox Museum has remained active as the museum board and staff continue to strengthen the museum’s future and prepare the museum for the 2021 season. The highlight of this year’s effort was the 16th Knox Annual Lecture, a virtual event this year, held on August 13. The response from supporters, both local and national, was overwhelming, and the lecture grossed an astounding $59,000 for the virtual event. This generous support will help to sustain the upcoming plans for 2021, help maintain the building, and continue to keep the museum books “in the black” at a time when museums across the country struggle to retain members and remain viable. A strong board is vital to this effort and the five new members below, announced at its Annual Meeting on August 27, all bring renewed enthusiasm and unique expertise to the museum.

Carol Achterhof is a familiar face throughout the area as a professional auctioneer with Thomaston Place Auction Galleries. A New Englander by birth, she has lived all across the country with her family and with her own career. After a 25-year career in marketing and brand management, Carol followed her retired parents to Maine in 2002 and purchased a historic home in Thomaston where she decided to pursue a lifelong interest in antiques and fine art at Thomaston Place, particularly in the silver, porcelain, and jewelry categories. She also lends support to their branding, media relations, consignment-oriented advertising efforts, and special event activities.

A devoted animal lover, especially her own family of cats, Carol has served as president of the Camden-Rockport Animal Rescue League (now PAWS), Secretary of the Pope Memorial Humane Society, board member of
the Thomaston Historical Society, and member of the Penbay Customer Relations Board. Her historic home was featured in the Thomaston Historical Society’s very first Home for the Holidays in 2006. Carol has been a longtime supporter of the Knox Museum as was her mother, Betty, who served as a Docent in the 1980s.

Brianne Brophy lives in Tenants Harbor with her husband, Chris, a photographer and Senior IT Consultant for SAP and their four-year-old son, Collin. For the past ten years, she has worked for the Diplomatic Reception Rooms at the U.S. Department of State in Washington DC, a job she has pursued remotely since 2017 enabling her to return to her home state of Maine.

Working with an 18th century American collection that focuses on the Revolution, our nation’s formative years, and the stories of the patriots and craftsmen who built our country, she brings a wealth of knowledge to the Knox Museum board. During her tenure at the Department of State, she has been instrumental in the research, writing and logistical management for a year-long capital campaign that raised a $20 million endowment for the preservation of the Department of State’s period rooms and their 5,000 historic objects. In addition, she developed an education program, and has supervised donor outreach, annual giving, marketing and events. Bri believes that “history is cool and relevant, and more crucial than ever.

People just need to be shown…….and to do that requires imagination and vision.”

Bri has agreed to serve as Chairman of the Knox Museum Collections Committee.

Mary Anderson Griffin of Thomaston and her husband, Ben, have been coming to Maine since 1983, and in 2015 moved to Thomaston permanently because they loved the small-town atmosphere, the 4th of July festivities and the historic homes. A Virginian for many years, Mary Anderson brought her community spirit and volunteer zeal with her.

A theater major in college, she was a member of the board of the Mount Vernon Community Children’s Theater and a drama teacher at Burgundy Farm Country Day School, Alexandria, Virginia, where she directed two plays a year. In addition to her love of theater, Mary Anderson has always been involved with national and local politics, most recently selected as an alternate to the Democratic caucus here in Maine in 2016. She volunteers at the Thomaston Interchurch Fellowship Food Pantry, has co-chaired the Holiday Open House for the Thomaston Historical Society for five years, and is active behind the scenes with the Watts Hall Community Players. She is quick to put her creative energy where needed and when asked. Mary Anderson will serve as the Knox Museum Board Secretary.

Wayne Mallar grew up in Machias but now lives in Bangor and is president of Maine Sons of the American Revolution and Maine State Color Guard Commander. For several years, he has attended the birthday of General Knox with the Maine SAR and has just joined the General Knox Color Guard of the Massachusetts SAR.

After an extensive career in finance, Wayne, his wife Sonia, and their family returned to Maine. He has served as Scout Master and Commissioner for the Boy Scouts of America, President of the Historical Society for Katahdin Area Council Boy Scouts of America, and along with his wife, is an active member of McCobb’s Company, and 74th Highlander Soldiers of Scotland reenactment groups that have participated in activities at the Knox Museum.

He and Sonia also make — by hand — all of their period attire. He is a 16-year member of the Historic Preservation Committee for the City of Bangor, a Trustee for National Society Sons of the American Revolution, and a Member of the National SAR Society Facility Committee for Historic Preservation, Louisville, Kentucky.

He is a Board member of Friends of Bangor Public Library and its Past Treasurer. Wayne loves peonies and is past state president and current vice president of Maine Peony Society.

Karen Smith makes her home in New Orleans but is a frequent summer visitor to Spruce Head and an eager sponsor of the activities at the Knox Museum. Karen brings extensive expertise in fund raising to the museum after serving as Finance Chairman and Treasurer of Poydras Home in New Orleans. She also acted as its project designer and oversaw the design and construction of a $6 million building expansion project and a $3 million project to construct an independent living unit and Alzheimer’s facility at the Poydras Home.

Karen has served on several boards in New Orleans, including the Children’s Bureau Board, the YWCA, and an Ad Hoc Committee charged with founding Neighborhood Housing Services. She served as executive director of the Alumnae Association at Newcomb College, chaired the Junior League Public Issues Committee, the Crisis Care Center, and co-chaired with her late husband, the Edna Gladney Auxiliary and New Orleans Chapter of the United States Naval Academy.


The Knox Museum and the Board of Trustees welcome these new board members and look forward to an exciting new year in 2021 when the doors of Montpelier can be open once again.