College of Humanities and Social Sciences

CHSS News & Events

Deborah A. Smith Receives National Museum Award

Kennesaw State University is pleased to announce that Deborah Smith, Grants and Contracts Specialist for the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, has received the Excellence in Peer Review Service Award from the American Association of Museums (AAM). This distinguished award honors individuals who have shown outstanding professional dedication and service to the museum field through the Museum Assessment Program and Accreditation Program.

The Museum Assessment Program and Accreditation Program are tools provided by AAM to assist museums in achieving excellence in their operations and service to communities. Both programs depend on Peer Reviewers for their success. In order to serve as a Peer Reviewer, museum professionals must possess a broad knowledge of current standards and best practices in the museum field and demonstrate a willingness to share their expertise and help advance the profession.

"To serve as a Peer Reviewer for these two essential programs embodies the commitment to excellence that is most esteemed by the museum field,” said Ford Bell, president of AAM. “These individuals have stood out among their dedicated colleagues in their selfless effort on behalf of museums everywhere, sharing their knowledge and experience."

Before joining the College of Humanities and Social Sciences in 2007, Deborah Smith worked at five museums in Kentucky, New York and Maine as a registrar, curator, grant writer, and director. She has conducted 17 peer-reviewed assessments in ten states since 1985. In her present position as the grants specialist for the College she advises and assists more than 200 faculty members research and prepare proposals for external funding.

Deborah Smith and five other museum professionals were selected to receive this honor from a total of more than 1300 Peer Reviewers. The recipients were selected for their exceptional level of professionalism, dedication, diplomacy, and service to the field.

"I am truly honored by this award," Smith said. "Participating in this program has given me the chance to see some very special historic places. It never ceases to amaze me that something I have seen or done through my museum connections has proved relevant and useful for the incredibly diverse work we do in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences." Among the Centers in the College that actively pursue grant opportunities are the Center for Conflict Management, Intensive English Program Center, Center for the Study of the Civil War Era, and the Center for Sustainable Journalism.

The other recipients of the Excellence in Peer Review Service award are:

  • Alex Barker Director, Museum of Art & Archaeology University of Missouri-Columbia
  • James Duff CEO and Executive Director, Brandywine River Museum
  • Kit Matthew Product Manager, Blackbaud, Inc.
  • Edward Pershey VP Museums & Historic Properties, Western Reserve Historical Society
  • Kay Williams Director, Tyron Palace Commission


Posted: June 1, 2009