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Vernon  

Major shakeup at museum

John K. White

The new executive director of the Greater Vernon Museum & Archives announced a complete overhaul of the facility and the strategy for the fall.

All staff were given three-month layoff notices this week and Steve Fleck says a consultant will be brought in to review the vision and create new job descriptions to reflect the new strategy.

Part of the pressures to make the changes were financial, Fleck said.

"The staff involved with the museum received written three-month notice that the positions they're in right now would be rationalized, would be reduced during that time," Fleck said. "That part was caused by an immediate financial need. That wasn't something that we could have waited even another six months for."

Fleck felt that this was also a good time to start fresh, as a new cultural centre is on the horizon.

"The museum going forward really wants to have a different set of programs or a different approach to the way they offer services around heritage and history in the community," Fleck said. "We're trying to align with the Greater Vernon cultural plan ideas and also the idea that we're moving toward a slightly different kind of venue and the way of serving through a culture centre."

Fleck said that although a new cultural centre might be five years off, the museum wanted to get their strategy aligned with what the future holds as soon as possible.

"We are one of the anchor tenants in the new facility, but it's not too early for us to plan to way we would portray ourselves and the way we'll act if we're trying to prepare for that role," he said. 

Fleck said he is looking forward to offering changes in the fall.

"Immediately, as soon as we're on the ground, and the people who are in these roles, we hope to be open during the evenings so that community groups can be using this as a public facility," he said.

Existing staff will be able to apply for the new jobs once they are posted, and the postings will also go external for members of the public to apply on, Fleck added.



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