New leadership at the National Maritime Historical Society


The National Maritime Historical Society (NMHS) Board of Trustees has announced the appointment of Jessica MacFarlane as the organization’s new Executive Director, effective September 1, 2022.

MacFarlane will succeed current chairman and chief executive Burchenal Green, who steps down on August 31.

National Society of Maritime History The mission is to raise awareness of the nation’s maritime heritage and the role shipping has played in shaping civilization, through publications, educational programs, shipping conferences, partnerships and outreach events. It also publishes the popular quarterly magazine, Sea History Magazine.

MacFarlane has been a member of the NMHS leadership team for eight years, serving as vice president and director of organizational development. Prior to her time at NMHS, she worked for 14 years in the property development industry and holds a BA in Political Science with a concentration in Ethics and Public Policy, as well as a Masters in Communications from the University Clark.

“On behalf of the Trustees and the entire organization, we are energized and encouraged by the leadership Jessica MacFarlane brings to her new role with the Society,” said NMHS Chairman Jim Noone. “Over the past eight years, Jessica has been committed to increasing support for the Society, championing the stories of our maritime past and present, and sharing these important lessons with young people. Her expertise in communications, fundraising, operations and strategic planning positions her ideally to lead the Society.

As Executive Director, MacFarlane will work closely with Trustees to lead the organization’s strategic planning, expand its diverse membership, grow revenue through operations and philanthropic support, and accelerate the Company’s digital and social presence. .

“I am honored and privileged to lead the organization and to benefit from Burchie’s remarkable work on behalf of the maritime heritage community,” said Ms. MacFarlane. “His leadership has had a tremendous impact on the growth and evolution of the Society, and as we enter our 60th year, I am delighted to continue the broad panorama of our global maritime heritage as the new Executive Director of NMHS. “

Green, who will continue to work with the Society on special maritime outreach programs. Its main short-term focus will be Sail250, a series of events involving navy and sailing training ships in five US port cities to commemorate the nation’s 250th birthday in 2026, and the Center for American Marine Art, a national project to document and digitize marine art for virtual and traveling exhibits.

“I have had the unique honor of leading the Society for more than a quarter of a century, and I am grateful to be able to help lay the foundation for the next leader of NMHS,” said Ms. Green. “I thank our directors for their efforts on the search committee and commend them for conducting a vigorous national search. I am confident that Jessica will thrive in her new role and that you will join me in welcoming her.


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