Stacy Coon steps into her new role as the director for the Oneida Nation Museum after working as the assistant director for the past four years. Coon has over a decade of experience in museums, having worked at a tribal museum in Oklahoma prior to the Oneida Nation Museum.
“What has prepared me for this role has been my experience ‘in the trenches’ I like to call it, working hands-on over the years with museum collections from exhibit displays, creating mounts to secure and safe-guard, to the tracking and managing of thousands of objects, all the way down to setting insect traps to keep the insects away,” Coon says.
Coon has a holistic understanding of the work that goes into maintaining a museum and its importance to cultural preservation.
“My experience from top to bottom, with all of the these components of the museum field has really allowed me the have a deeper respect, not only for the objects, but also knowing that by carrying out these different responsibilities, we are ensuring their protection and preservation for future generations to come,” she says.
Coon says the museum staff is expanding and strengthening the diversity of visitor experiences by enhancing exhibits, creating more hands-on activities and creating more outreach opportunities. These strategies will educate the community about the culture and history of the Oneida people.
Visitors can expect some upcoming museum highlights including “1000 years in 100 hours,” a new exhibit consisting of Oneida pottery from prehistoric to contemporary days. Another new exhibit is “Tehuttsihwa’eks.” This engaging exhibit encourages the community to interact in order to better learn the cultural significance of Lacrosse as it relates to the origins of the Haudenosuanee.
“What people can expect to see in the future here at the Oneida Nation Museum is the continued enhancement of our current and future exhibits with the use of technology and traditional hands-on interaction,” Coon says. “In addition, our outside exhibits will also see some enhancements as well. I want visitors young and old to leave here with a better understanding of who we are.”
For more information on upcoming exhibits, visit oneida-nsn.gov/our-ways/museum/.