Keynote Scholars

Henry Adams is an endowed professor in the Department of Art History at Case Western Reserve University and a specialist in American Art. He has served as curator, director, or interim director at numerous museums, including the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh; the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City; the Cleveland Museum of Art; the Cummer Museum of Art in Jacksonville, Florida; and the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art in Kansas City. Adams has published widely, principally on American artists of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and has curated several major traveling exhibitions. In partnership with Ken Burns, he produced a documentary on Thomas Hart Benton.

Keith Eggener taught modern architecture and American art at Carleton College, the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, and the University of Missouri, before joining the University of Oregon as an endowed chair in 2013. He is the author of Luis Barragán’s Gardens of El Pedregal and Cemeteries, as well as numerous articles and book chapters on Mexican and US art, architecture, landscape, urban design, and material culture. He also edited the collection American Architectural History: A Contemporary Reader and has been on the editorial staffs of American Studies Journal, the 60-volume Buildings of the United States series, and the online journal Places, for which he is a columnist. Currently, he is editor-in-chief for the Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians. Ongoing projects include a monograph on the early twentieth century Kansas City architect Louis Curtiss and a collection of essays on built environments of the American Midwest.

Sandra Enríquez is an assistant professor of history, director of the public history emphasis, and an affiliated faculty member in the Latinx and Latin American Studies Program at UMKC. Dr. Enríquez is a social historian of modern United States history with particular research and teaching interests in Chicanx and Latinx history, urban history, borderlands, social movements, and public history. She is currently working on a manuscript project that examines grassroots preservation efforts to keep an El Paso, Texas, Mexican American neighborhood from the bulldozer. Dr. Enríquez is the director of the Latinx KC Oral History Project and the co-editor of a digital project on Kansas City activism, as well as co-curator for an exhibit that commemorates the centennial of Kansas City’s Guadalupe Centers. She is a native of Ciudad Juárez, México.

Chuck Haddix is the director of the Marr Sound Archives at UMKC, producer and host of the Fish Fry on the local NPR station, co-author with Frank Driggs of Kansas City Jazz: From Ragtime to Bebop, and author of Bird: The Life and Music of Charlie Parker. He is a leading expert on the Kansas City style of jazz. At the Marr Sound Archives, Haddix is responsible for the preservation of over 350,000 historic sound recordings.

John Herron is the executive director of the Kansas City Public Library. Formerly a professor of history and interim dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at UMKC, he is a scholar of nineteenth century America, with a research focus in Western history and environmental studies. His current projects explore the cultural and environmental history of Kansas City and the American Midwest. He co-edited Wide-Open Town: Kansas City in the Pendergast Era and is completing a co-edited collection of essays on the environmental history of Kansas City called Heartland Green.

Jeffrey Pasley is a professor of history and journalism, as well as the associate director of the Kinder Institute on Constitutional Democracy at the University of Missouri. He is the author of the award-winning books, “The Tyranny of Printers”: Newspaper Politics in the Early American Republic, and The First Presidential Contest: The Election of 1796 and the Beginnings of American Democracy. Before entering academia, he worked as a reporter-researcher for The New Republic and as a speechwriter for Al Gore’s 1988 presidential campaign.

William (Bill) Worley earned a B.A. in English from Kansas State University in 1968. In 1971, he added an M.A. in Religious Studies from Colgate-Rochester (NY), then in 1979 an M.Phil. in History from the University of Kansas. His doctorate came in 1986, also in History from the University of Kansas.

Most of his career has been spent in higher education either administratively (Dean of Students, Acting Academic Dean) or as a history professor (Eastern New Mexico University, Sterling College (KS), Metropolitan Community College-Kansas City (2008-present)). At varying points he was involved in private business (feed and grain) and local politics (campaign coordinator for an unsuccessful KC mayoral candidate). From 1994 to 2002, Worley served as Director of the Kansas City Regional History Institute at UMKC, largely funded by the William T. Kemper Foundation.

Worley’s area of academic concentration has been U.S. Urban History, Kansas City Regional History, and the impact of the Real Estate industry on American Life in the 20th Century using J.C. Nichols as the prism for his study.

Project Team

Program Director and Lead Scholar — Diane Mutti Burke is a professor and chair of the History Department at UMKC, as well as director of the UMKC Center for Midwestern Studies. She is the author of On Slavery’s Border: Missouri’s Small-Slaveholding Households, 1820-1865. She is working to facilitate new historical research on the Kansas City region through organizing symposia and co-editing volumes, including: Bleeding Kansas, Bleeding Missouri: The Long Civil War on the Border and Wide-Open Town: Kansas City in the Pendergast Era. She regularly shares her scholarship with public audiences and frequently consults with cultural organizations on regional history related public programming. She will serve as the workshop facilitator. 

Program Administrative Assistant — Hannah Hohenstein-Flack is the Senior Executive Assistant in the Dean’s Office of UMKC’s College of Arts and Sciences. She will handle communications with workshop participants and manage the financial aspects of the grant.

Program Graduate Assistant — Jackson Hodges is a graduate student in the M.A. History Program at UMKC. He will aid in producing video tours for the workshop and the creation and management of the workshop website.

Historical Content Expert and Workshop Coordinator — Jason Roe is digital history specialist at the Kansas City Public Library, and content manager and editor for the websites, The Pendergast Years: Kansas City in the Jazz Age and Great Depression and Civil War on the Western Border: The Missouri-Kansas Conflict. He has deep knowledge of the archival resources related to the workshop and will serve as a historical consultant for Wide-Open Town Scholars throughout the week as they work on their lesson/project plans.

Workshop Coordinator — Mary Ann Wynkoop is the former director of the American Studies Program at UMKC. This will be her sixth Landmarks workshop. She will help to facilitate the workshop and serve as the point person for feedback from participants.

Master Teacher — Dacia Rzchowski is a retired 38-year veteran teacher and a distinguished member of UMKC’s High School College Program faculty. She has attended many Landmarks workshops as a teacher and has joined the UMKC Landmarks staff as the master teacher five times in the past. She will create the lesson/project plan assignment and will consult with Wide-Open Town Scholars as they develop their lesson/project plans.

Museum Directors, Tour Guides, and Speakers

Mark Adams has served as Education Director at the Truman Library since 1997. Mark has a BA in History and Geography and a postgraduate degree in History and Secondary Education from the University of Liverpool in England.

Raymond Doswell is the Curator/Education Director for the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum.

Angela Estep is an Education Specialist at the Harry S. Truman Library and Museum. She is the Director of The White House Decision Center, which provides an interactive educational experience to thousands of students each year. She holds a BA in Education and is a former classroom teacher. 

Stuart Hinds is the Curator of Special Collections and Archives for the University Libraries at UMKC. In 2009 he cofounded the Gay and Lesbian Archive of Mid-America, an initiative to document the histories of the LGBT communities in the Kansas City region. This has led, in part, to the creation of UMKC courses on American and Kansas City LGBT history, articles in a number of journals, and a contract with the University Press of Kansas for a monograph on Kansas City queers in the 20th century.

Cherie Kelly is a certified social studies and language arts teacher with eight years of classroom experience. After earning her M.A. in History, she began teaching and has done so at the elementary, middle, and high school levels, as well as providing community education in both public television and museum settings. Cherie has been a museum educator at the National WWI Museum and Memorial since 2011; as the School Programs Manager she builds curriculum, develops teacher programs, facilitates national and local educator professional development and works with many other exciting public events and education programs. 

David LaCrone is the Digital Branch Manager at the Kansas City Public Library.

James McGee is the Senior Manager of Virtual and Visitor Experience at the American Jazz Museum.

Amelia Nelson is the head of library and archives at the Spencer Art Reference Library in the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. 

Stacie Petersen is the Exhibitions Manager and Registrar at the National WWI Museum and Memorial. The Museum and Memorial began collecting artifacts in 1920 and holds the most comprehensive collection of Great War artifacts in the world. Under Petersen’s guidance, the Museum and Memorial has begun to digitize and provide resources online with over 45,000 object records currently available. These records have been accessed nearly 2 million times in over 180 countries.

Geri Sanders is a historian and archivist whose work focuses on Kansas City history and the Kansas City style of jazz.

Steve Sitton is the current (and only the second) administrator of the Thomas Hart Benton Home & Studio State Historic Site in Kansas City, MO. Mr. Sitton has been at the Benton Home since July of 2001, and has worked for Missouri State Parks since October of 1994.

Steve is a graduate of Ruskin High School in south Kansas City, class of 1985. He earned his B.A. in History from Drury College in Springfield, MO in 1990. He was initially hired as the Tourist Assistant at Deutschheim State Historic Site in Hermann, MO, moving up to Site Administrator after 6 years.

As director of the Benton Home, he has the responsibility and honor of actually living in the historic house.

Bonnie Thomas is the manager of the Educator Programs & Resources program at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art.

Carmaletta Williams is the Executive Director of the Black Archives of Mid-America.