Storytelling is a vital part of our shared human experience. Some stories are so enthralling that they are told and retold, shaped and reshaped, and interpreted from multiple perspectives. Museums play a fundamental role in telling these stories and a duty to connect visitors to the truth behind events.
Vince Dalfonzo, the Opening Keynote, is a former FBI crisis negotiator and lifelong museum lover. Vince has a compelling story to tell, a perspective not often considered – the person on the other end of the line. And it’s all about psychology.
Vince will focus on one of the most difficult cases of his career while walking the audience through a tragic tale of violence, public panic, and confusion – the DC Sniper Attacks. In the fall of 2002 two individuals started a killing spree that lasted 23 days, spanned two states, leaving 10 innocent victims dead and 3 innocent victims critically wounded.
While at large, the shooters terrorized millions and the public was paralyzed by fear. The case was one of the largest manhunts ever conducted in the U.S. and an international news sensation. This case has been documented and profiled in many different ways and in many different forms: books, movies, magazine articles, television shows, and as an exhibit in an American museum. But even though the case has been told and retold, Vince will share with us a perspective that has been lost in the shuffle, offering insights and ideas about how we, as museum communities, can work to explore events truthfully yet with impact.
Vince Dalfonzo is a lifelong lover of museums and a career agent with the FBI. As a Crisis Negotiator, Vince has worked on some of this century’s most infamous cases including the Boston Marathon Bombers, the high seas hijacking of the Maersk Alabama, and the manhunt for the DC Snipers.
Through a unique model, Calgary’s Police Museum is both an exciting place to visit and operates with a strong dedication to social responsibility.
Using a variety of education and awareness tactics (crime prevention education, engaging historic stories and fun policing experiences), this museum takes an outside-the-box approach to its success – by reaching the largest audience possible and targeting the issues that matter today.
The trick? Be interesting and be memorable. By offering experiences that are appealing to large audiences and at the same time educate about topics that are important (with a good dose of wow-factor moments) – positive change is possible.
This informative tour will cover the Police Museum’s beginnings – from concept and design to implementing annually sold-out programs and experiences.
Book and Paper Conservator
A police museum’s most important stories often lie within the pages of aging books, manuscripts and other records. Check your backroom– almost all museums have significant materials made from paper in their collections! Oftentimes we put in on a shelf and forget that paper is fragile, subject to deterioration and affected by humidity, temperature, light, pollutants, mold and pests. In this presentation, you will learn from a professional paper conservator how to care for and house your institution’s paper and archival items and save them for future generations.
Lisa Isley is a book and paper conservator that has served the Calgary area since 2004. She is a Professional Associate of the American Institute for Conservation with a specialization in book and paper and an accredited member of the Canadian Association of Professional Conservators with a specialization in books. Her work includes conserving and restoring books, art on paper, paper and archival materials for institutional, private, and public collectors. Lisa is currently employed part time as a private practice conservator and part time as the paper conservator for Glenbow. Her clients include the University of Calgary, the Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies, the City of Calgary, the University of Lethbridge, the Archives Society of Alberta as well as private collectors.
Textile Conservator and Collections Management Specialist
Museum Collection Management Specialist
Learn how to exhibit and store many common textiles from industry experts. Get the best-practice basics on handling, preserving and displaying common items found in police museum collections (techniques are applicable to all museums).
Create your own mounts with the helpful guidance of true experts. Make expert-quality displays using footwear, hats, belts and regalia. Complete a final project using a piece from your own collection! Bring an item with you (that you feel comfortable travelling with) to use instantly in your own museum or home.
Join Reich and Petch for a presentations surrounding their process of creation, successful design tips and stories about some of their biggest successes.
Reich and Petch have worked on the Canadian Air and Space Museum, Cleveland Museum of Natural History, Canadian Museum of Civilization, the Royal Ontario Museum, the Canadian Museum of Nature, the Toronto Zoo, the Smithsonian Institution, the National Museum of American History and the Aukland Museum.
Richard Lewis Principal, Richard Lewis Media Group (RLMG)
Richard Lewis has more than 25 years of experience in designing interactive media experiences in North America and around the world. Lewis and RLMG have completed more than 250 projects with a budgeted value of more than $100 million. Through these projects he has presented a multitude of ways in which narrative, technology, and architectural space can work together to allow for the creation of media experiences that will engage and delight visitors. Lewis and his team strive to expand the company’s skillset so that RLMG can continue to address new technical and creative challenges and opportunities. RLMG projects have won major awards from AAM, SEGD, TEA, and AZA.
Pauline Dolovich Principal, Reich+Petch Design International (R+P)
Pauline Dolovich is a Registered Architect and Principal at Reich+Petch with over 20 years of experience developing museum projects internationally. Pauline has produced many projects both locally and internationally for clients such as the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto and the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC. She specializes in working on large-scale museum projects that involve large teams of specialists and object-rich and complex installations. She is highly experienced with Universal Exhibit Design Guidelines and works to promote the concepts of accessibility and sustainability to the larger museum community. A LEED Green Associate, Pauline is a member of the American Alliance of Museums, Canadian Museums Association, Ontario Association of Architects, and the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada. She is the on the board of a number of different cultural organizations and speaks often at a variety of industry conferences.
The Calgary Zoo
As Calgary’s top tourist attraction and Canada’s most visited zoo, the Calgary Zoo is proud to offer us a rare opportunity to see the giant pandas.
Enjoy a delicious breakfast and discover why the giant pandas plays such an integral role in the zoo’s conservation efforts, why they sleep so much, and what specialized care is required to protect these majestic animals. After our meal, we will be treated to an exclusive viewing of the pandas while they are out and about enjoying their morning routine.
Museum Retail Specialist
Both an artist and arts administrator, Linda has been involved in Alberta’s cultural industry since 1991. She has worked with arts festivals, project managed numerous public art projects, and owned/operated a retail ceramic studio, before managing the retail gallery for the Alberta Craft Council. In 2017, Linda joined the Legislative Assembly of Alberta as the Supervisor of Retail Services for Alberta Branded, a unique retail space that celebrates, through art, fine-craft and design, Alberta’s vibrant culture.
An ardent supporter of Alberta’s arts community and an advocate for Alberta’s visual, fine-craft and design artists, Linda strives to provide support and opportunities for artists that in turn, showcase Alberta’s thriving creative culture.
Museum Collections Specialist
In February 2019, YouthLink Calgary Police Interpretive Centre unveiled its first exhibit: Women in Policing. This ten-part display and documentary film captured a major shift within the Calgary Police Service – including personal experiences, photos and stories.
Join Calgary’s Police Museum’s collections expert to learn about the process involved in such an undertaking, procedures developed, tips and surprises, during a captivating presentation and supporting clips of the documentary.
Join us for a tour and dinner at a jewel in the heart of Calgary which is steeped in history and tradition. Fort Calgary is the birthplace of the city of Calgary where, in 1875, the North West Mounted Police built a fort at the confluence of the Bow and Elbow Rivers. This site is known as Mohkinsstis the ‘Elbow’ at the heart of Blackfoot territory, where we walk in the footsteps of the Blackfoot, Stoney Nakoda, Tsuut’ina, Métis and other Indigenous peoples who have used this area for thousands of years.
We will have a personalized tour of the Fort followed by cocktails and a dinner in their beautiful Officers’ Mess, a bright and spacious private space with lovely views of the river valley.
Dress: Business Casual (walking shoes recommended as there is an opportunity to explore Calgary’s oldest neighbourhood, Inglewood).
Learn from 4 museum professionals with experience in museums that closed or are under threat.
Lucie Heins Panel Guest
Lucie Heins is the Assistant Curator for the Western Canadian History program at the Royal Alberta Museum in Alberta. She has a B.Sc. and a M.A. in Human Ecology, majoring in clothing and textiles. Lucie has also worked on projects at the Textile Museum in Washington DC, and in Haifa, Israel. For the past seven years, Lucie has been researching the history of Alberta quilts and quiltmakers. Lucie recently presented a paper on her research at the British Quilt Study Group Annual Seminar and her paper was published in their peer-reviewed journal Quilt Studies. Lucie has previously served 5 years as a Board Member of the Alberta Museums Association and was a Board Member and President of the Victoria School Museums and Archives Society before the museum’s closure. Lucie has since shared the Victoria School experience with others and conducted a workshop on how to plan for the closure of a museum.
Bev Copithorne Panel Guest
Bev Copithorne is a passionate educator and facilitator with over 10 years in both the classroom and museum-type setting. Raised on her family ranch West of Calgary she is a proud 5th-generation Albertan. Her passion for sustaining ‘evidence of the past’ compelled her to complete her Masters in Museum Education. Of course, this gives her a great reason to use some of her holiday time to tour Western Canada in search of the most eclectic and unique cultural museums and, does so in a vintage VW beetle whenever possible. She is involved in a number of non-profits and serves as the chair of a small agricultural museum in Calgary.
Anne Lindsay Panel Guest
Anne Lindsay was born in Edmonton. She received her first taste of museum life at the Provincial Museum of Alberta, and after completing an arts administration certificate in museum studies from Grant MacEwan College (now University), was hired on a contract basis by the Edmonton Police Museum. 11 years later, she left the EPS and her position as Curator, to move to Ontario were she was the Base Museologist for CFB Petawawa and the Airborne Forces Museums. In 2010 Anne took a leave of absence and moved back to Alberta. In 2013, she was hired as the Executive Director of The Hangar Flight Museum in Calgary, where she stayed until 2018. She is currently enjoying her freedom and exploring new ventures, while still being involved with the museum community. She is now the Vice-President of the Organization of Military Museums, and is a volunteer museum manager for a small military museum on the West Coast, where she hopes to relocate very, very soon.
Jennifer Forsynth Panel Guest
Jennifer Forsyth is an artist, independent curator, and museum professional. She holds a Masters in Fine Arts from The University of Calgary, a Bachelor in Fine Arts from the University of British Colombia, and a Diploma in Visual Art from Camosun College, in Victoria, BC. Forsyth currently holds the position of Advancement Lead for the Alberta Museums Association (AMA). In this role she seeks resources for the association and its members, manages strategic partnerships, and leads the AMA in its advocacy work. Forsyth a co-founder of fast & dirty, an Edmonton based rotating collective of artists and curators that creates exhibitions and art events for short durations in unusual environments and projects that challenge curatorial methods. She has worked for and volunteered at, museums, galleries, and Artist Run Centres, in Alberta and British Columbia.
Rebecca Derry Melenka Panel Guest
Rebecca Derry Melenka has been an active member of the museum community for more than two decades. She started in the Architectural Archives at the University of Calgary (1998), and for the Princess Patricia’s Light Infantry at Military Museums (1999 – 2000). From 1999 to 2010 the Glenbow Museum (1999 – 2010) and most recently as the Supervisor and Executive Director of the Firefighters Museum of Calgary (2011 – 2018). While at Glenbow, she worked in all areas of the museum, including Archives, Cultural History, Indigenous Studies, and Art. Her core work was as the Exhibition Coordinator working with incoming and outgoing exhibitions. In 2011, she became the Executive Director of the Firefighters Museum of Calgary where she initiated, managed, and facilitated three large storage moves, opened the museum and then reopened it again after more than a three year hiatus.
She now works with the Engage Resource Unit with the City of Calgary and freelances as a museum professional.
Lead Educator, Valour Canada
Aaron Curtis is the lead educator for Valour Canada and has been with the non-profit organization for three years. Aaron is an Ontario-certified teacher with a background in education, archaeology and aboriginal engagement.
President, Valour Canada
The future is here. It hasn’t launched yet, but when it does, this project will change museums forever. Be one of the first to learn about this ground-breaking simulation project that will launch in June 2019 at the Juno Beach Centre (Canada’s Second World War Museum, located in Normandy, France).
Valour Canada will give you all the intel on the Juno Beach 75th 360 VR Project. Development, education applications, costs and everything else you’re curious about regarding VR in museums will be discussed.
The second half of the session will include on-site demos of the virtual reality project.
Peter Boyle is the President of Valour Canada and has been with the non-profit organization for three and a half years. Peter has 20 years of experience in the field of Canadian military history, both in museums and with battlefield tours in Europe.
The Military Museums of Calgary
The Military Museums of Calgary, Alberta is the largest tri-service museum in Western Canada and the second largest military museum in the country. It consists of the four founding regimental museums and the Naval, Army and Air Force Museums of Alberta.
Join us for lunch and an exclusive tour of their impressive collection which includes a stunning array of Naval, Air Force, and Army equipment.
A veteran homicide investigator with the Calgary Police Service, Dave Sweet’s career has included some of Calgary’s most horrific and fascinating cases.
Sweet’s closing keynote will take the audience on a journey, starting with the very first murder in Calgary in 1884. Sweet will shed light on how investigations were done in the past contrasted with to how they are done today, including historic challenges and remarkable advancements in technology.
Sweet will also give the audience insight into some of the heartfelt lessons he has learned while working as a detective, the premise for his renowned book (an “unconventional memoir”), Skeletons in my Closet: Life Lessons from a Homicide Detective. Sweet’s “life lessons” will include the vicious gang war of the early 2000s and the violent beating death of Mark Mariani by white supremacists as well as other high-profile cases. While an investigator’s experiences are often challenging, Sweet’s method of embracing the reflected beauty found in what one can learn from such events, is both enlightening and empowering.
Through his presentation, Sweet will bring many of our museum exhibitions to life by narrating the stories behind some of the objects and evidence currently on display. Using these examples, Sweet will delve into the importance of museums, including the role they play in preserving the objects and stories of culture, how they shape our knowledge, play a part in today’s society and celebrate our journey.
Additional tours are offered on Monday and Friday