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Beginning in June 2020, the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs will welcome two new members to its staff: Janis Oppenheimer and Annie Fenimore.
As site manager of the Buena Vista Conference Center in New Castle, Del., Janis Oppenheimer is responsible for overall administration of the historic property, planning and logistics for events, meeting with new clients, creating marketing and promotional strategies to increase visitation, and managing staff members who serve the thousands of guests who attend events at the site each year.
Oppenheimer most recently served as administrative director and event rental manager for the New Castle Historical Society. Her distinguished career also includes service as a meeting moderator and instructor for educational and promotional meetings, focus groups, seminars/events, and adult and distance learning; in management positions for Innovative Schools and the First State Montessori Academy, both in Wilmington; as an adjunct instructor of business at Wilmington University; and in marketing and administrative positions for the New Castle Public Library, Delmarva Power and Light, Pharmakon and many others.
The Wilmington, Del. native and current resident of historic New Castle holds a Master of Business Administration, a bachelor’s degree in accounting and business administration, and an associate degree in office administration, all from the University of Delaware.
She is looking forward to working with division staff and “getting to know the elegant and historical site that is Buena Vista.”
As part of her responsibilities as the John Dickinson Plantation’s lead historic-site interpreter, Annie Fenimore will assist site supervisor Gloria Henry in overseeing day-to-day operations, developing and implementing educational and interpretive programs, and coordinating community outreach and special events.
Fenimore holds a bachelor’s degree in history and Italian studies from the University of Rochester and is pursuing a master’s degree in public history from Southern New Hampshire University. In addition, her educational experiences include accreditation as a Certified Interpretive Guide by the National Association for Interpretation; and service as a collections-management intern for the Biggs Museum of American Art, as a library volunteer for the Delaware Agricultural Museum and Village, and as a researcher and transcriber of Seward family correspondence for the University of Rochester.
Prior to joining the division, Fenimore served for two years as a historical interpreter for Dover’s First State Heritage Park. During her tenure there, she was awarded the Small Museums Association’s Hunter-Burley Award which recognizes outstanding contributions to the advancement of public access and professional growth for an individual institution.
In her spare time, the Dover native is a seamstress who makes her own historical clothing. She also enjoys dancing in a variety of genres including tango and Colonial-period dance, and currently serves as president of the Dover English Country Dancers.