Christy S. Coleman, a native of Williamsburg, will take over as president around April 7. Previously, Coleman has served as president and CEO of The Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, the country’s largest African-American museum. It is in Detroit. “The thing about Tredegar that was most interesting to me is that they are not only interested in the history, they are interested in exploring the legacy of the history,” Coleman said from Detroit.
Coleman began her career in history while still an undergraduate student, working as a living history interpreter at Colonial Williamsburg. After studying briefly at the College of William and Mary, she received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in museum studies from Hampton University. “I am what is referred to as a public historian,” she said. “It is my job to take what the academicians do and make it relevant to the general public.”
Coleman said the center seems to be doing a good job of fulfilling its mission to balance the perspectives of the Union, the Confederacy and the African-Americans. “The fact of the matter is, there is already a Museum of the Confederacy, and I don’t feel like I’m going to have to compete with them,” she said.