About

MSA Board of Directors

KAREN MCNEELY, PRESIDENT

Karen McNeely is the Director of Retail Operations at the Milwaukee Art Museum in Milwaukee, WI.  Karen’s retail career started with Carson Pirie Scott, a Midwest department store. She held positions in both store management and the buying office during her 19 year tenure. In 2008, she started with the Milwaukee Art Museum.  Karen credits the invaluable connections she has made through MSA with helping her smoothly navigate the transition to the nonprofit world. Karen served three years as a chapter officer, as well as Treasurer on the MSA Board of Directors, Chairperson of the Membership Committee and the MSA Marketplace Task Force.

PATRICIA SAMPSON, FIRST VICE PRESIDENT

Patricia Sampson is the Manager of Retail Shops & Visual Merchandising at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, Georgia. Patricia began her career in profit retail in her home state of New York. She wore many different hats in her young career from assistant buyer, to buyer, and even fashion show coordinator. All of these experiences have been instrumental to her success in her current position at The High. Patricia is a dedicated and passionate member of MSA. She has previously served on MSA chapter and national committees, on the regional board of the South Atlantic Chapter, and now serves a third term on the MSA Board of Directors. Lastly, Patricia is an avid sports fan, volleyball being her favorite. She enjoys sewing, cooking and spending quality time with family and friends.

MELODY CABAN, SECOND VICE PRESIDENT

Melody Caban is the Museum Store Manager and Buyer at the Amon Carter Museum of American Art in Fort Worth, Texas. She has been a member of the Museum Store Association for over 5 years, and has worked in the museum industry for over a decade. Melody currently serves as Second Vice President on the MSA Board of Directors, and as President of the MSA Southwest Central Chapter, and was a founding member of MSA NEXT. Through this work, she has gained both regional and national level experience setting up events, conventions, and working with incredible vendors and members. In 2017, Caban partnered with Las Vegas Market and colleagues from AHVRP, MSA, and ZAG, to present a symposium titled Selling to Millennials, which was so popular it sparked a webinar, teaching nonprofits how to work with and sell to a new generation.

MEG HAUSER, SECRETARY

Meg Hauser is the Visitor Services Manager at The National Museum of Toys and Miniatures in Kansas City, Missouri, where her responsibilities extend beyond Visitor Services and the Museum Store to areas such as operations, administration, bookkeeping, facilities, education, and interpretation. She was also the co-lead of the KC Emerging Museum Professionals from 2014-2018 and collaborated with EMP leaders nationwide to organize and conduct video planning meetings related to the development of the National Emerging Museum Professionals Network. She has been an active member of the MSA since 2013, having served on the Southwest Central Chapter Board from 2015-2018 and the Chapter Policy and Procedure Task Force from 2016-2017, and is currently serving as co-chair of the Marketing and Communications Committee.

KATE SCHUREMAN, TREASURER

Kate has been with the Peoria Riverfront Museum, and its predecessor Lakeview Museum or Arts and Sciences, for 20+ years and currently serves as the museum’s Chief Operating Officer and VP of Administration.  She is responsible for visitor service, front of house earned revenue operations including the Museum Store, strategic planning, institutional evaluations, best practices, and human resources, as well as daily museum administration.  Before serving as the COO, Kate served as the Project Manager for the $85 million Peoria Riverfront Museum, which opened in October 2012. Kate also serves the museum field as the Immediate Past President of the Illinois Association of Museums, serves on the Museum Store Association Education Group and on the Museum Store Association Finance Committee, as an IMLS grant reviewer, and on the American Alliance of Museums Advocacy Committee.

DARCY ESTES PINELO, DIRECTOR AT LARGE

Darcy Estes Pinelo is the General Merchandise Manager at the J. Paul Getty Museum. She started her 32-year career at the museum as a sales associate, later managing product development, before serving in her current role. As General Merchandise Manager, Darcy leads a Buying team of five in the purchase and production of diverse product assortments for the Getty Center and Getty Villa Museum stores, and online. She is also responsible for and enjoys designing proprietary product packaging that creates a consistent visual identity in support of the Getty brand, while also providing the consumer with compelling educational content about source artworks. Darcy has been an active member of the MSA for more than 20 years, attending annual conferences, presenting at Western Chapter meetings, and serving as Chapter Officer.

MICHAEL GUAJARDO, DIRECTOR AT LARGE

Michael Guajardo is the Interim Senior Director for Enterprise Operations at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond, Virginia. He has been an MSA family member for nearly 10 years, enjoying wonderful learning opportunities and meeting remarkable individuals who served as amazing role models. Over the last five years, Guajardo has led sessions at MSA’s conferences and volunteered in different capacities. In 2014, working with Mid-Atlantic Chapter’s leadership, he helped plan and host a chapter meeting at VMFA. Since 2017, he has promoted the Museum Store Sunday initiative, raising funding and serving on its subcommittee.

AUBREY HERR, DIRECTOR AT LARGE

Aubrey Herr is the Manager of Retail Operations at the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, Maryland. She has worked in nonprofit retail since 2007, proudly assuming multiple responsibilities including buying, merchandising, inventory control, hiring and training staff, and, most recently, overseeing all operations of her museum’s café and online retail sales. She was a speaker at MSA FORWARD Conference in 2018, and served as the President of the Mid-Atlantic Chapter and Co-Chair of MSA NEXT. In 2018, she received the MSA NEXT Award.

JAY THOMSON, DIRECTOR AT LARGE

Jay Thomson is the manager of the Museum Shop at the Chrysler Museum of Art in Norfolk, Virginia. He is a creative artist/designer and retailer with extensive experience in retail management, product development and non-profit organization administration. He presented sessions on Product Development at MSA FORWARD in 2019 and 2018, and eCommerce at the 2021 virtual conference. Jay also serves as President for the MSA Mid-Atlantic Region Chapter.

IBAI DEMIRDACHE, VENDOR MEMBER ADVISOR

Ibai Demirdache is the founder and Design Director of Kinzoku Custom. A third generation jeweler, Ibai apprenticed for several years in Japan. It is there that Kinzoku (meaning metal in Japanese) was born. She credits her time in Japan for opening her eyes to the beauty and simplicity of good design. Her newly expanded line of custom MADE WITH YOUR ART TM  jewelry & accessories are a reflection of her core philosophy: the best gifts are the ones that tell a story and as she says to her customers, “let us tell yours”. 

MARY LIND MAHMUD, VENDOR MEMBER ADVISOR

Mary Lind Mahmud is the Sales Manager at WorldFinds, a fair-trade wholesaler in the Chicago area of Illinois. Previously she taught art (among other functions) in a Montessori school, and before that worked in advertising and marketing firms in the D/FW area. She has served as CVA with the Midwestern Chapter as well as on the national membership committee. Working remotely from her home in Raleigh, NC these last few years has allowed her to easily expand her face-to-face time with museums in different regions across the US, cementing her wholehearted support of MSA.

ELIZABETH PRICE, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR 

Elizabeth Price, MBA, CAE, is a member of the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) and The Colorado Society of Association Executives (CSAE). Elizabeth has been working in association management since 2000, and has spent over 18 years in Executive Management. She has worked with associations from the ground up, building programs, developing leadership, reorganizing and managing the office and staff, and increasing and rejuvenating membership.

BLUE ANDERSON, IMMEDIATE PAST PRESIDENT AND ADVISOR TO THE BOARD

Blue Anderson is the Director of Visitor Services for the Columbia River Maritime Museum in Astoria, OR. Blue has been a member of MSA since 2000, and has served as President of the Board of Directors and President of the Pacific Northwest Chapter. She is also a Co-Chair of the Conference Committee to Boston, and a member of MSA’s Education Advisory Group (EAG). Blue’s passion is education and her outstanding commitment to advancing educational programs and opportunities will help MSA achieve its strategic goals in the future.

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