Director - The Valentine Museum
As part of Encorepreneur’s mission to introduce our attendees to interesting new people, topics and locations, we visited more than 65 different locations for breakfasts before COVID. On April 27, we will still be limited to Zoom, but our speaker is going to use words and pictures to take us on a tour of some of Richmond's most historic and interesting neighborhoods.
Bill Martin, the Director of the Valentine Museum, is one of the most innovative museum executives in the country, and was named as the Times-Dispatch's 2018 “Person of the Year” for his commitment to the Richmond community. Bill is well known for his entertaining and interesting tours of the city’s historical districts, and his virtual tour on the the 27th will answer questions like why the Irish Festival is held in Church Hill, what part of town was known as both the Harlem and the Wall Street of the south, and why Highland Park and not Maggiano’s should be called Richmond’s first “Little Italy”.
Long known as ”Richmond’s attic.” The Valentine's storage rooms are packed with tall shelves lined with 1.5 million items. But there’s much more to The Valentine than its collection. Under Bill’s’s leadership, the museum has embarked on a mission to connect the city’s past and present, and to bring cultural diversity and current relevance to the museum visitor's experience. Since being appointed Director of the Valentine more than 20 years ago, Bill has also been an active particiapant in community conversations about societal issues and cultural enrichment and has worked collaboratively in the community to promote city tourism initiatives. He recently collaborated with many educators and scholars to create a downtown heritage walking trail, the Richmond Liberty Trail, which joins the Richmond Slave Trail. He holds a B.A. in Urban Studies and an M.A. in Public Administration from Virginia Tech.