Morgan Albertson Jaouen – Executive Director
Morgan hails from a small colonial New England village (Old Deerfield, Massachusetts) where she participated in regular historical re-enactments and visited many house museums as a kid. Her “back-yard” experiences inspired her to pursue a career in the field of history, with a specific interest in experiential learning and the physical objects that illustrate the past. After earning her bachelor’s degree in archaeology from Brown University, Morgan moved out West for work and play. It was both the rugged landscape and enduring pioneer spirit of Jackson Hole that Morgan immediately felt connected to; a place she now considers home. For the past five years, she has been working as a cultural resource specialist at Grand Teton National Park, primarily focused on historic preservation planning, volunteer coordination, and project management. She also has been actively involved in the Alliance for Historic Wyoming and the Teton County Historic Preservation Board, serving as an advisor and working on special projects. During this time, Morgan received her Master of Science in Historic Preservation from the University of Oregon.
Morgan was no stranger to the Jackson Hole Historical Society and Museum prior to joining the organization as the Executive Director in 2017, as she regularly utilized the research center, partnered on special events, and even helped out in the Deloney Museum for a month. With a strong foundation in cultural resource management and a commitment to Jackson Hole Heritage, Morgan now oversees the organization’s programming, strategic planning, financial management, special events, and fundraising. When not at the Museum, Morgan can be found out on the mountain bike trails, ski slopes, or investigating historic cabins.
Becky Kimmel – Director of Development
Becky has a Bachelor of Science in Communication and is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and is a Certified Fund Raising Executive by the CFRE International Organization. She has been a long-time resident of Jackson Hole and passionate about both the community and The Jackson Hole Historical Society and Museum (JHHSM). Becky has worn a fundraising hat for several local nonprofits during her career spanning several decades. In 1985, she launched a new department of philanthropy for St. John’s Medical Center. During her 22 year employment history with the hospital, she led two successful capital campaigns, developed the Foundation office and supported ongoing needs through grants, SPET and individual contributions. She worked as the Administrator for the Presbyterian Church of Jackson Hole and then served as the Director of Programs and Events for the National Museum of Wildlife Art. When she is not working part-time at the Museum, Becky stays busy supporting her husband’s storage business. She is also a past president of the Rotary Club of Jackson Hole and proud mother of Chunk, her labradorable.
Nora DeWitt-Hoeger – Research & Collections Coordinator
Nora grew up in sunny Redondo Beach, California. With both parents as teachers they were flexible enough to take long road trips across the country or travel abroad during the summer months—inspiring her interest for history and travel. For college she decided to head north to get out of the sun and enrolled at the University of Oregon. She volunteered in the exhibits and programs at the Natural History Museum on campus and with a historic archaeologist. She participated in a reconnaissance archaeology field school for a summer in Belize and spent a fall semester studying abroad for her history degree in dynamic London.
After graduating with a BA in History and Anthropology Spring of 2013 she moved to Grand Teton National Park for just a summer job and got hooked. Since spending summers growing up doing trail maintenance in Glacier, hiking Grand Canyon and Yosemite National Parks and scooping ice cream for a concessionaire in Yellowstone she decided that Jackson was right up her alley. While taking advantage of all the outdoor pursuits Jackson has to offer such as hiking, backpacking, running and skiing she decide that she wanted to be more involved in the valley’s unique history which brought her to the Museum in 2016. She is excited to continue working as a research assistant and in the museum to help preserve the historic record of Jackson and continue to make it available to the public.
Frances Ritchie – Education & Programs Coordinator
Frances recently transitioned from public education to museum education. Receiving her Bachelor of Arts in Art Education from Colorado State University, she went on to teach art in public elementary schools in the Denver Metro area for 4 years. In her years as a teacher, she specifically worked on developing curriculum for English Language Learners through community resources and partnerships. She believes museums can serve as a unique resource within the community and not just for the community. She has also worked as an educator at the Denver Art Museum, National Museum of Wildlife Art and Jackson Hole Children’s Museum.
Frances grew up in Littleton, Colorado– roaming mountain trails and skiing bump runs at Mary Jane Resort. She came to Jackson Hole pursing museum education opportunities and has come to love the collaborative community of non-profits. In her spare time, she enjoys identifying bugs on hiking trails and checking out large stacks of books from the library. She is very excited to be a part of the JHHSM community and the opportunity to garner history through local events and programs!
Maria Rachal – Program and Administrative Assistant
Maria grew up in a small town in the very flat, very humid but also very culturally rich state of Louisiana. After earning her BA in French and History at the University of Louisiana in May 2014, she came to the Tetons to work for the summer season and fell in love with Jackson Hole. After a few years away in which she worked in France, Maine, and Colorado and earned a Master of Historic Preservation from the University of Georgia, she was lucky enough to come back to Jackson Hole to start working for both JHHSM and Grand Teton National Park. When she’s not busy at work helping to preserve history and historic places, she loves exploring all that makes Jackson Hole so special, especially food wise (she’s a huge fan of Thai Plate and Persephone) and nature wise (where else can you say you were late for work because a bison was crossing the road?). While she is still adjusting to the elevation and dry air, she knows that this community is a great place to call home.
Rebecca Sgouros and Matt Stirn – JH Archaeology Initiative
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As co-directors of the Jackson Hole Archaeology Initiative (JHAI), Matt and Rebecca collaborate with regional educational institutions (Frison Institute at the University of Wyoming, Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research at the University of Colorado in Boulder, Wyoming Office of the State Archaeologist, and others), and land management agencies (Bridger-Teton and Caribou-Targhee National Forests), as well as the local ranchers and land owners. Trained as environmental archaeologists, they mount surveys and excavations in the high country of Jackson Hole and the Greater Yellowstone region, updating the community on an annual basis about their discoveries. In addition, they lead seasonal field schools that involve local students in hands-on learning, and community archaeology projects at the Linn Ranch in Victor, Idaho, as well as other locations.
Samantha Ford – Research Historian
Samantha Ford grew up in the rolling Green Mountains of Vermont, surrounded by classic New England scenery and history. In 2004 the State of Vermont found itself among the 11 “Most Endangered Historic Places,” an annual report by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. A childhood passion for history became realized as a career. In December 2013 Sam graduated with a M.S. in Historic Preservation from the University of Vermont, where she earned a B.A. in History in 2011. Sam is most interested in preserving community heritage through saving and interpreting historic buildings, structures, and sites.
Inspired by Jackson Hole’s unique and rich history, she first worked with JHHSM during the summer of 2013. Her work for JHHSM sends her across the valley, documenting the hidden and well-known ranches and historic sites. Her work has focused on area families, cemeteries, dude ranches, and land use history. Currently, Sam splits her time between Jackson Hole and Vermont. In Vermont, she teaches college undergraduates and adults how to “read” the landscape and interpret the cultural clues (stone walls, cellar holes, and other oddities) left behind in Vermont forests. Whether in the West or East, Sam’s primary goal is to educate others about the importance of preserving historic resources. She hopes to inspire others to enjoy these structures and spaces as much as she does.
Alexei Cree – Research Intern
Before moving to Jackson in late October, Alexei Cree worked with the Mashantucket Pequot Museum and the Mystic Aquarium developing cultural and educational exchanges between Native American youth of Point Lay, Alaska and the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe of Connecticut. He also created an interactive, web based timeline of the Pequot War Era used for educational and public outreach, and worked on archaeological sites throughout Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island.
With a Bachelors degree in History from St. Francis College in Brooklyn, Alexei is planning to eventually continue his studies to earn a Masters in History and Museum Studies. In the meantime, though, he is very excited to be interning with staff from the Jackson Hole Historical Society and Museum; he spends his time cataloging artifacts from the Slim Lawrence collection and digitizing ephemera for the archives – as well as skiing!