OMA Award Spotlight - Allen County Museum

Recognizing excellence in Ohio museums during Arts and Humanities Month

To help celebrate October as Arts and Humanities Month, and to kick-off the call for nominations for this year's OMA awards, we'll be highlighting our 2022 OMA Award of Achievement winners throughout the month with our OMA Award Spotlight. We are featuring these Award Winner Spotlights during Arts and Humanities Month to help champion the amazing projects, programs and professionals that make Ohio's museum community strong.

The Awards of Achievement are presented to reflect the outstanding quality and caliber of work by Ohio museums and their professionals in two categories: Institutional Achievement Awards and Individual Achievement Awards.

Nominations for these awards are incredibly detailed. This in-depth process helps to illustrate how these institutions and individuals have gone “above and beyond” the normal call of duty to support their institution, serve their public and advance the cause of the museum community.

Each year, the review panel is overwhelmed by the outstanding projects, innovative programming and dedication to our field as exhibited in each of the institutional and individual nominations. Congratulations again to each of our 2022 award winners! 

Today, we'll be featuring our winner for the 2022 award for Best Exhibition Catalog under $500,000.

Allen County Museum - Snapshot of Democracy: The Eight Ohio Presidents Catalog


Allen County Museum’s “Snapshot of Democracy: The Eight Ohio Presidents” catalog is the first published book of scholarly importance that complements an exhibition displayed at the museum.

The exhibition upon which the catalog is based originated at the Decorative Arts Center of Ohio as, “The Ohio Presidents: Surprising Legacies,” and traveled to the Allen County Museum in 2022.

The museum takes pride in the exhibit being the largest temporary exhibition worked on by the staff of the Allen County Museum, with the 108-page catalog as an important record of the overall project. More importantly, however, is that it also stands alone as a book of interest, bringing to life the lives of the eight Ohio presidents and First Ladies through photographs, essays and other scholarship.

A true collaboration, in addition to the partnership with the Decorative Arts Center, the catalog included the work and research of four scholars: Dr. Christine Fowler Shearer of Fowler Artistic, Michelle Gullion of the National First Ladies’ Library, Chris Craft of the Massillon Museum, and Amy McKay from The Ohio State University.

Allen County Museum Director, Amy Craft Klassen noted, “The undertaking challenged our team and offered them a chance to broaden their expertise in new and meaningful ways. The exhibition (and catalog) provided Allen County residents, the surrounding community, and all of our patrons a greater understanding of Ohio’s relationship to the presidential legacy and its role in national and international politics.” 

Did your museum have an amazing catalog for an exhibit - virtual or physical - during the 2023 season? Be sure to nominate it for the 2023 award for Best Exhibition Catalog! Learn more here.

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