Executive Director Briann Greenfield Takes Senior Role at NEH

Harriet Beecher Stowe Center’s Briann Greenfield to Take on Senior Role at National Endowment for Humanities

Re-opened Center Will Conduct National Search for New Leader


(Hartford, CT) The Harriet Beecher Stowe Center’s Board of Directors announced today that Executive Director Briann Greenfield has accepted a position at the National Endowment for the Humanities as Director of the Division of Preservation and Access. The board will appoint an interim executive director and conduct a national search for a permanent replacement.

Since June 2018, Greenfield has led the Hartford historic house museum. The Harriet Beecher Stowe Center preserves and interprets Stowe’s Hartford home and the Center’s historic collections, promotes vibrant discussion of her life and work, and inspires commitment to social justice and positive change.

“We are grateful for Briann’s extraordinary leadership of the Stowe Center during an historic time. She’s leaving us a stronger institution, better positioned to serve the public than ever before,” said Board Chair Susan Johnson. “We wish her every success in her new endeavor.”

As the Stowe Center’s executive director, Greenfield expanded the institution’s vision of public history and stewarded the Center through the COVID-19 pandemic. During her tenure, the Stowe Center:

  • Earned a $1.6 million grant from the State of Connecticut for repairs and ADA upgrades to the Center’s park-like campus, ensuring its relevance and use for the neighborhood, city, and state. The award matches a $385,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities;
  • Strengthened the operational and financial foundation of the Stowe Center;
  • Negotiated a first-of-its-kind union contract with visitor center guide staff, which is now represented by Local 2110 UAW;
  • Launched plans during the pandemic to digitize the Center’s collection, making it more accessible; as well worked on outdoor programming, enhancing the historic park-like setting and encouraging community use of the space;
  • Awarded the 2020 Stowe Prize which recognizes work that illuminates a critical social justice issue to Albert Woodfox, author of Solitary, a memoir about the four decades he spent in solitary confinement for a crime he did not commit.
  • Maintained programming and education through a historic pandemic, allowing the Center to re-open to the public on April 8, 2021 for Thursday, Friday, and Saturday visits.

“I have been both happy and humbled to work at the Stowe Center, ensuring that heritage resources remain relevant, vital, and accessible in building a more just world,” said Greenfield. “I’m thrilled by the opportunity to put these principles to use at the federal level.”

Greenfield’s last day at the Center will be May 11, 2021. The organization will conduct a national search for the ideal person to lead the Stowe Center into the future.



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