New Village Curator, Operations Director Join Strecker Museum

Sept. 9, 1997

Two new museum specialists have been hired by the Strecker Museum complex at Baylor University. Dr. Ellie Caston will serve as director of operations and Melinda Herzog will be curator of the Gov. Bill and Vara Daniel Historic Village.

Caston, a native of Longview, will manage the day-to-day operations of the Strecker Museum Complex. She received her bachelor of fine arts from Southern Methodist University and her doctor of fine arts from Texas Tech, where she graduated with the first class of the museum sciences program.

After finishing her doctorate, she worked at the Carnegie Natural History Museum in Pittsburgh, Pa., and the State Association of Museums in Richmond, Va. In 1983, she returned to Longview to develop the local history museum and remained in that capacity until accepting the Strecker position.

In addition to her duties as Director of Operations, Caston will teach "Education Programming in Museums" for the Department of Museum Studies. She believes her years of actual museum work experience will benefit her students.

"I think the best teachers are those individuals who have worked in the field," Caston said. "They have a real grasp of what students will encounter when they get out in the real world."

Although born in Houston, Herzog lived in Virginia, Illinois and Ohio before returning to Texas for college. She graduated from Trinity University with a bachelor's degree in studio art and history and received her master's degree in museum administration from Texas Tech.

Her work experience includes positions with the Railroad and Pioneer Museum in Temple and the Burritt Museum and Park, a living history museum, in Huntsville, Ala., where she worked for 13 years. Prior to accepting the village curator position, she worked for almost four years at the New Jersey Museum of Agriculture.

As curator of the village, she plans to provide hands-on history programs to school children and build on programs already in place.

"It is very rare that an entire village is moved to one site," she said. "The village is a real showcase for Waco, and we want the community to use it as an asset."

For more information, call 710-1110

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