Live Panel Sessions

Bring your questions to these live, interactive panel discussions around timely industry topics.

Tuesday, November 2

DEAI: Critical Reflections on Museum Employment Pathways

As museums seek to become more inclusive and reflective of the diversities found within their communities, an essential step is making improvements and/or expanding museum employment pathways (or “pipelines”). How are museums and higher education institutions attracting, training, supporting, and promoting a more diverse next generation of museum professionals? How are they creating a workforce and culture that is inclusive? Join us for a moderated conversation featuring panelists from the public history program and DEAI efforts at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, board members of the Chippewa Valley Museum, and staff from the National Museum of Mexican Art in Chicago and from the Wisconsin Historical Society. Panelists will discuss their work in recruiting and developing museum workers and public historians – particularly those who are non-white – and the successes and pitfalls of those efforts.


  • Raquel Aguiñaga Martinez,  Registrar / Encargada de Registro, National Museum of Mexican Art, Chicago, IL – Since the mid-1990s, Raquel Aguiñaga-Martinez has assisted in coordinating all exhibitions at the National Museum of Mexican Art, including the annual Día de Los Muertos exhibition.  Mrs. Aguiñaga-Martinez holds a B.A. in Art History from the University of Illinois in Chicago.
  • Cheryl Jiménez Frei, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of History, Public History Program, Affiliate, Latin American & Latinx Studies, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, WI – Dr. Cheryl Jiménez Frei’s research specializations are in memory and the built environment, visual culture, oral history, and digital history. Her work has been published in the Journal of Latin American StudiesThe Public Historian, and Collections: A Journal for Museum & Archive Professionals. She is a core member of the WI Latinx History Collective and recipient of the 2021 WI Historical Society Governor’s Award for Archival Innovation, for the Western Wisconsin COVID-19 Archive
  • Dr. Heather Ann Moody, Enrolled member of the Ho-Chunk Nation of Wisconsin, Associate Professor, American Indian Studies Program, Advisor, Inter-Tribal Student Council, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, WI – Dr. Heather Ann Moody holds a Master of Arts degree in American Indian Studies from the University of Arizona, a Certificate of Museum Studies from UW-Milwaukee, and an Ed.D. in Teaching and Learning from the University of Minnesota-Duluth. Her work centers around her background in teaching and learning in relation to the incorporation of accurate American Indian curriculum in K-12 and beyond. Dr. Moody leads Domestic Intercultural Immersion experiences to Native communities, is a co-advisor for the Inter-Tribal Student Council, and serves in numerous capacities on campus regarding equity, diversity and inclusion including serving as the co-chair for the UWEC EDI Strategic Plan Committee and the Center for Racial and Restorative Justice. She is also in her second term serving on the Board of Directors for the Chippewa Valley Museum
  • Christian Øverland,  Ruth and Hartley Barker Director & CEO, Wisconsin Historical Society, Madison, WI – Prior to his current role at the Wisconsin Historical Society, Christian W. Øverland was the Executive Vice President & Chief Historian at The Henry Ford, in Dearborn, Michigan. He has consulted with many museums throughout his 30-year plus museum career and holds a M.A. from the Cooperstown Graduate Program.
  • Moderated by Jennifer Van Haaften,  Assistant Director, Wisconsin Veterans Museum, Madison, WI – Prior to her work at at the Wisconsin Veterans Museum, Jennifer Van Haaften was in senior leadership roles for over 25 years and created and directed visitor experiences and educational programs at both living and traditional history museums. She holds an MA in Historical Administration at Eastern Illinois University and an MPhil in history from the University of Manchester, UK.

Wednesday, November 3

Repatriation: The Truth Behind the Challenges

Join us for a candid conversation with members of Midwestern Native American and museum communities about NAGPRA laws and repatriation. We’ll share a few examples of repatriation efforts that have taken place in the Midwest region and beyond, ranging from land repatriation to the repatriation of archival records, human remains, and items of cultural patrimony. Panelists will unpack some of the hard truths about what makes the process so challenging and the oppressive nature of the laws that guide it. They will also explore the ways in which museums have moved beyond transactional relationships to become true partners in the repatriation effort by letting go of their misconceptions, learning more about Native American heritage and culture, and removing the barriers that prevented repatriation success in the past.


  • Heather Bruegl, Oneida/Stockbridge-Munsee, Director of Education, Forge Project, NY – a citizen of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin and first line descendent Stockbridge Munsee, Heather is a graduate of Madonna University in Michigan and holds a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts in U.S. History.  Inspired by a trip to Wounded Knee, South Dakota, a passion for Native American History was born.  She has spoken for numerous groups including the University of Michigan, University of Wisconsin-Madison, and the College of the Menominee Nation. She has spoken at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh for Indigenous Peoples Day 2017.  Heather also opened and spoke at the Women’s March Anniversary in Lansing, Michigan in January 2018. She also spoke at the first ever Indigenous Peoples March in Washington, DC in January of 2019.  In the summer 2019, virtually in 2020 and in 2021, she spoke at the Crazy Horse Memorial and Museum in Custer, South Dakota for their Talking Circle Series. She has also become the ‘’accidental activist’’ and speaks to different groups about intergenerational racism and trauma and helps to bring awareness to our environment, the fight for clean water and other issues in the Native community.  A curiosity of her own heritage led her to Wisconsin, where she has researched the history of the Native American tribes in the area.  She is the former Director of Cultural Affairs for the Stockbridge-Munsee Community and now serves at the Director of Education for Forge Project.  In addition to that she also currently travels and speaks on Native American history, including policy and activism.
  • Robert L. Larsen (Deuce), President, Lower Sioux Indian Community in the State of Minnesota and Chairman, Minnesota Indian Affairs Council – Robert L. Larsen is a happily married father of 11 beautiful children. Robert was voted on as a Lower Sioux Tribal Council Member in 2013. On August 31, 2015, he was elected by his Council as Lower Sioux Tribal Council President. He is currently serving his 3rd consecutive 4 year term. Robert, also known as “Deuce” to many, is a very active tribal council member, attending as many trainings/conferences he can to improve the Lower Sioux Indian Community. On May 26th, 2016 Robert was also elected as MIAC (Minnesota Indian Affairs Council) Chairman, which he also takes pride in. When Robert is not handling business in the office or attending trainings/conferences, he enjoys attending his kids’ events, shooting pool, golfing and riding his Harley.
  • Ben Leonard, Manager, Community Outreach & Partnerships, Minnesota Historical Society, St. Paul, MN – Not photogenic enough for a professional headshot, Ben has worked in historic sites at the Minnesota Historical Society since 2013, and in the museum field since 1998. Ben currently serves as the Senior Coordinator for the Historic Fort Snelling Revitalization. At work he’s passionate about developing relevant and inclusive opportunities for the public to engage with our history, while creating sustainable operational models for the future. At home he watches more shows about English narrowboating than his wife and four children appreciate. 
  • Rose Miron, PhD, Director of the D’Arcy McNickle Center for American Indian and Indigenous Studies, Newberry Library, Chicago, IL – Rose is the Director of the D’Arcy McNickle Center for American Indian and Indigenous Studies at the Newberry Library in Chicago and Affiliate Faculty in the Center for Native American and Indigenous Research at Northwestern University. Her research explores Indigenous public history and public memory within the Northeast and the Great Lakes regions She holds a BA in History with a and a Ph.D. in American Studies from the University of Minnesota.
  • Moderated by Anna Cannizzo, Assistant Director/Durow Curator of Collections, Oshkosh Public Museum, Oshkosh, WI, and member, WFM Board of Directors – At OPM, Anna is responsible for all areas of operations, including finances, donor relations, capital improvements, personnel matters and supervision, exhibit management, planning, helping to organize programs and events and development and management of project schedules, along with a broad spectrum of work in the area of three-dimensional collections management and care for the Museum’s collection which includes fine and decorative arts, history and natural history objects.  Anna currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Wisconsin Federation of Museums and previously served as a state representative for the Midwest Registrars Committee. Anna earned her B.A and M.S. in Anthropology with a certificate in Museum Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.