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Slavery Museum moves forward page 3
U.S. National Slavery Museum gives account of progress.

Date published: 4/23/2005



Plans for promoting tourist, cultural and educational projects are ongoing, as are demographic and marketing studies, according to the report.

According to the tax return provided for the last six months of 2003, the seven members of the museum's board of directors received no pay. Foster, who took over the position in August 2003, earned $28,333 for her full-time services through the end of that year. No one else was listed as a key employee on the IRS return though it does show that an additional $38,577 was paid in salaries and wages.

Damron started with the museum in October 2003 and Ruth Jones, who is based in Richmond, is listed as starting at an undisclosed point in 2003, according to the report. Jones said her role is essentially as board secretary. She is a longtime associate of Wilder and currently serves as the mayor's executive assistant.

In that same report, Foster states that a fund-raiser and a marketing director were to be hired in 2004. Damron said this week that the museum has "retained" a fund-raiser and expects to add "marketing services" this year. He did not elaborate.

The museum's 2003 tax return shows a $5,000 contribution from local businessman James M. Bowen. In response to a question from the newspaper, Damron said this week that fundraising is still in the "quiet stage" and provided no additional numbers.

The museum has also hired personnel for designing and fabricating the exhibits, he said. Details on that are to be announced sometime soon.

Rodenberg said details of the step-by-step development of the museum are much less important to him than seeing that the project gets finished. He said the facility will play a key role in the city's economy.

"The city is attempting to become a tourism destination of national prominence," Rodenberg said, "so it is very important to that mix of tourism amenities that we have here."

To reach PAMELA GOULD: 540/657-9101 pgould@freelancestar.com

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