Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs
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DHCA Buena Vista


Division welcomes three new staff members

Written on: September 28th, 2015 in NewsPreservation

During September 2015, the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs welcomed three new members to its staff—Patricia Gerken, Laurie Turkawski and Nicole Worthley.

Patricia Gerken comes to the Buena Vista Conference Center after serving as a marketing and retail assistant for Delaware State Parks, as the events and retail coordinator for the Indian River Life Saving Station Museum and as the volunteer coordinator for the Delaware Agricultural Museum and Village. The Milford, Del. resident holds a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of Delaware. As Buena Vista’s historic-site supervisor, she is involved in a myriad of tasks including maintaining customer relations, meeting with new clients, conducting tours of the property, scheduling events, processing reservation agreements and billing, delegating and monitoring staff duties, managing social-media initiatives and overseeing the maintenance and upkeep of the house and grounds.

Patricia Gerken

Patricia Gerken

Originally from Michigan, architectural historian Laurie Turkawski joined the staff of the division’s State Historic Preservation Office after serving since 2008 as a historian/heritage resource specialist for the Fairfax County (Va.) Department of Planning and Zoning. Previously, she served as a tour guide at the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Woodlawn historic site in Alexandria, Va., and as an intern at the Ypsilanti Historical Society and the Henry Ford, both in Michigan. She holds a master’s degree in historic preservation from Eastern Michigan University, and degrees in finance from Walsh College and Oakland University.

Turkawski’s responsibilities at the division include conducting cultural resource reviews of federally funded or permitted projects for Section 106 compliance with the National Historic Preservation Act for historical and architectural properties; providing coordination services with state designated certified local governments; and oversight of division-held historic preservation easements and covenants.

Laurie Turkawski

Laurie Turkawski

A resident of New Castle, Del., Nicole Worthley joined the staff of the New Castle Court House Museum as a historic-site interpreter after three seasons serving in that role at Fort Delaware State Park. Worthley graduated in May 2015 from the University of Delaware with a bachelor’s degree in history and anthropology which included internships at the Newark History Museum and the Delaware Academy of Medicine. As a historic-site interpreter dressed in period clothing, Worthley will add a human face to Delaware history by bringing the people and events of the past to life.

Nicole Worthley

Nicole Worthley


Get involved in Preservation 50, the golden anniversary celebration of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966

Written on: September 25th, 2015 in EventsNewsPreservation

Activities to take place through October 2016.

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Division honors employees and volunteers at all-staff meeting

Written on: September 24th, 2015 in NewsVolunteerism

Agency celebrates its achievements and the people who helped make them possible.

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Progress report on improvements to state-owned historic properties in New Castle

Written on: September 22nd, 2015 in Historic SitesNewsPreservation

State is investing $350,000 for projects at the New Castle Court House Museum, Arsenal, Academy and Green.

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Division to sponsor 17 special events during October 2015

Written on: September 11th, 2015 in EventsMuseumsNews

Highlights of the month include programs on William Penn, the Ridgely family of Dover, and Lewes in the 1600s.

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World War II Mission Symbols

Written on: September 3rd, 2015 in ExhibitsNewsVolunteerism

Fourth in a series of articles exploring the subjects of images from the state’s William D. Willis World War II Photographic Collection.

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Division project utilizes people on the autism spectrum to get the job done right

Written on: August 28th, 2015 in NewsPreservation

Unique skills employed for scanning project involving tens of thousands of State Historic Preservation Office files.

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Division launches on-line calendar of events

Written on: August 14th, 2015 in EventsExhibitsMuseumsNews

Calendar provides comprehensive, long-term listings of programs taking place at the division’s five museums, and at the Buena Vista Conference Center.

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Seven programs on Native-American heritage among 20 events at division museums during September 2015

Written on: August 12th, 2015 in EventsMuseumsNews

Programs on Delaware’s Lenape and Nanticoke Indian tribes to be featured.

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America’s Heavy Hitter—The B-17 Flying Fortress

Written on: August 11th, 2015 in ExhibitsNewsVolunteerism

Third in a series of articles exploring the subjects of images from the state’s William D. Willis World War II Photographic Collection.

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