Museum board seat, directorship still open

Sep 21, 2012 By Christina George, Staff Writer

Until a new director is hired, Lander museum employees

will maintain operations and keep the doors open.

The Fremont County Museums Board continues its search for a new board member and a director of the Lander museum.

At the board's Sept. 13 meeting in Riverton, chairman Tom Duncan asked Fremont County Commission vice chairman Pat Hickerson if the county had started advertising for the board vacancy after the commission accepted Eileen Urbigkit's resignation.

Hickerson, who serves as liaison to the museums board, said he believed the position had been advertised but was unsure if applications had been received.

"Please encourage folks you think would be good to get an application in, because we can only appoint an applicant," Hickerson said.

Urbigkit resigned from the museums board last month after it dismissed Fremont County Pioneer Museum director Carol Thiesse.

In a letter to the commission, Urbigkit said, "Outside influences and personal agendas have created a disruptive and hostile situation that sidelines the interest and effectiveness of the Museum Board and imperils the good work for the county that we have done."

The museums board terminated Thiesse Aug. 22 after receiving many complaints about poor relations between Thiesse and the community. Urbigkit was absent from the special meeting.

The museums board appointed Joe Spriggs to serve as interim director until a permanent replacement could be found. Spriggs declined the appointment.

Until a director is hired, Lander museum employees will maintain operations and keep the doors open.

The museums board did not discuss the search for Thiesse's replacement at its September gathering, but the board did have an executive session to discuss two personnel-related matters. No board action was taken following the closed-door meeting.

Those interested in serving on the museums board have until Sunday, Sept. 30, to submit an application. The position comes with a nine-month term that expires June 30.

Applications can be picked up in the commission's office at the Fremont County Courthouse, 450 N. Second St., Room 205. Those interested can also call 332-1130 or e-mail

"The Fremont County Commissioners reserve the right to reject any or all applications," a published notice states.

Applications for the director's position may also be picked up at the commission's office.

According to a published notice, the museums board is seeking an "energetic, motivated and qualified person to join a small staff to define museum exhibits and programs, and functions as a museum administrator of the Lander museum."

For additional information about the director's position call 332-1075 or e-mail

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