American Precision gets $600,000 grant; announces new co-executive director


The American Precision Museum, at 196 Main St. in Windsor,  announces two significant developments.

First, Brooke Herndon – an experienced philanthropy professional – will join Steve Dalessio as co-executive director this month and will focus on growing the organization’s resources and capacity. Second, the Farley Family Charitable Foundation has awarded the museum $600,000 to inspire the next generation of innovators while addressing America’s “STEM Skills Gap.”

These developments, according to museum officials, will transform the museum and advance its mission to capture the imaginations of young and old with the spirit of innovation, problem solving and design demonstrated through the dynamic story of the machines and people that form the foundation and future of the manufacturing industry in America.

Herndon brings 25+ years of nonprofit fundraising and leadership experience to the museum. Previously, she served as vice president for development and advancement at Vermont Law and Graduate School and Mary Baldwin University. Most recently, she served as deputy director of development at Kimball Union Academy.

Board chair Lee Morris said, “Brooke’s philanthropic skills will help APM play a leadership role in addressing America’s ‘STEM Skills Gap,’ which is predicted to leave more than 2 million STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) jobs unfilled by 2030.”

Such jobs are projected to grow rapidly over the next 10 years, creating openings in computing, engineering and advanced manufacturing. However, the U.S. faces a glaring STEM skills gap that will leave many of these jobs unfilled and could cost the national economy as much as $1 trillion.

“Our ever-changing world calls for the next generation of talented STEM professionals,” said Dalessio, “and with its deep connection to innovation, The American Precision Museum is poised to address this pressing challenge head on.”

With generous support from the Farley Family Charitable Foundation, the museum will partner with SparkShop and the Homewood Science Center over the next three years to develop innovative curriculum, teacher training, interactive exhibits, and community events focused on building science, technology, engineering and math  education and career awareness.

James Farley was an “early  and exuberant supporter” of the American Precision Museum, according to his daughter, Sarah Huskey, co-trustee of the foundation.

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