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HHT Executive Director Announced: Meredith Sorin Horsford

Portrait of Historic House Trust Executive Director Meredith Sorin Horsford

The former Dyckman Farmhouse Museum Executive Director begins her tenure at the Historic House Trust on February 13, 2023.

Historic House Trust of New York City (HHT) is pleased to announce that Meredith Sorin Horsford has been appointed its next Executive Director, following the retirement of former Executive Director John Krawchuk in September. She will hold dual roles as the Executive Director of the Historic House Trust and Director of Historic Houses at the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation.

Ms. Horsford most recently led the Dyckman Farmhouse Museum Alliance where she has significantly expanded community engagement, fundraising, and interpretation of the museum. She has spent her career stewarding New York City historic house museums, including previous tenure as Deputy Director at the Historic House Trust and as Executive Director of Gracie Mansion Conservancy. Ms. Horsford has demonstrated exceptional skill at addressing preservation needs, expanding cultural collections, programming, and institutional development through her professional roles and as Board President of the Greater Hudson Heritage Network.

“I am thrilled to welcome Meredith Sorin Horsford back to Parks in her new dual role as Director of Historic Houses and Executive Director of the Historic House Trust,“ said NYC Parks Commissioner Sue Donoghue. “Meredith has extensive experience managing historic landmarks in New York City, and I look forward to working with her to further protect and enhance our treasured array of Historic Houses.”

Ms. Horford’s appointment follows a six-month long search led by independent executive search firm, ThinkingAhead, and the organization’s Executive Director Search Committee. 

“The Historic House Trust is delighted to announce the appointment of Meredith Sorin Horsford,” said Lisa Ackerman, Chair of the HHT Board of Directors. “She has a distinguished record of service to NYC Parks and a wealth of knowledge in cultural heritage management, and we have great confidence that this will be an engaging and fruitful chapter of our organization’s development.”

Ms. Horsford will be responsible for the leadership and development of the Historic House Trust and serving the organization’s nonprofit partners. She enters at a time where the organization’s highest priority is increasing support for capital needs, maintenance, and the well-being of their publicly-owned historic house museum partners. Current projects include a museum accessibility and innovation initiative, restoration projects in both design and construction phases, and more. 

About Meredith Sorin Horsford

Meredith Sorin Horsford studied Geography at the University of Delaware (Master of Arts, President’s Scholarship) and at the State University of New York College at Geneseo (Bachelor of Arts) as well as Grantmaking and Foundations at New York University. She began her career at the Historic House Trust as Manager of Historic Sites, later fulfilling the role of Deputy Director. As Deputy Director, Ms. Horsford secured capital and operating support from elected officials and private donors, and managed a specialized crew that worked on preservation and maintenance projects.

Ms. Sorin Horsford went on to lead Gracie Mansion Conservancy as their Executive Director. As Executive Director, she worked closely with the Mayor’s Office and Gracie Mansion Conservancy on preservation of the site, instituted a new vision for programs and engagement, and managed collections care on the museum’s collections and objects on loan.

For the past eight years, Ms. Horsford has served as Executive Director of the Dyckman Farmhouse Museum. Under her leadership, the museum transitioned its focus to public programming, transformed into a lively community resource, and secured nearly $7 million for building renovations in collaboration with NYC Parks. One of her key accomplishments was the Dyckman Discovered Initiative, which conducts research on the free and enslaved African people that lived and worked on the property. Through this research, the Dyckman Farmhouse Museum was able to uncover the names of the five people enslaved on the Dyckman farm and continues to uncover the histories of those underrepresented in museums.

In addition to her roles in nonprofit and museum management and development, Ms. Horsford serves as Board President of the Greater Hudson Heritage Network and speaks frequently about community engagement and nonprofit management. Her recent publications include Slaves Lived Here/Esclavos Vivieron Aqui in Seize the Moment: How Museums Can Prepare for the Post-Pandemic Age.

About the Historic House Trust of New York City

The Historic House Trust of New York City is a nonprofit organization and New York City Department of Parks & Recreation partner that ensures 23 publicly-owned historic house museums can tell their stories. Since 1989, their team of historic preservation experts and enthusiasts have worked to restore, interpret, and advance historic partner sites that span over 370 years of New York City life.

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