Historic Athens has appointed Michelle Nguyen (UGA MPA) as the Interim Director of the Athens Welcome Center. Nguyen will take over Director duties at the Welcome Center effective January 13, 2020 as Historic Athens begins the formal process of selecting a new permanent director.  The formal posting and job description for the position can be found at workforgood.org/job/586175/athens-welcome-center-director/.

Michelle Nguyen is an experienced public administrator who has worked in the public sector for 7 years. Most recently, she served as the Director of Economic Development for the Unified Government of Athens-Clarke County. In addition to her management experience, Michelle is an experienced human resources professional and community liaison who has worked with volunteers and citizen groups on issues such as human relations, housing, talent attraction, beautification projects, and downtown development. Born and raised in Salisbury, North Carolina, she earned her bachelor’s degree in public policy analysis at Duke University. She earned her Master of Public Administration degree from the University of Georgia.

About the Athens Welcome Center:

As noted on ExploreGeorgia.org, The Athens Welcome Center (also known as the Church-Waddel-Brumby house) is "believed to be Athens' oldest surviving residence. Its rescue from demolition and restoration in the early 1970s as a house museum and welcome center sparked the historic preservation movement in Athens. The building is staffed with docents who can provide free maps and brochures, podcast and audio tours of Athens, and visitor information. Gift shop with local products and art on site."

A group of concerned citizens rescued the home in 1967 (moving it to its current location at 280 E. Dougherty Street) then went on to found the organization now known as Historic Athens. Thanks to the continued efforts of staff, committee members, trustees, and volunteers, the house is now responsible for over 11,000 documented visitor interactions each year.  Recently, the home secured a 2020 SPLOST Project to help improve facilities and ensure ADA compliance. Operations of the Athens Welcome Center are completed through strategic partnership: the home and surrounding property are owned by Athens-Clarke County, facilities are supervised by Historic Athens, and funding is providing by the Athens Convention and Visitor Bureau through 15% of the Athens-Clarke County Hotel/Motel tax.

About Historic Athens:

Historic Athens is a 501(c)(3) non-profit working to celebrate and conserve community heritage in Athens, Georgia. For over 50 years, Historic Athens has worked to improve historic preservation and heritage conservation in the Athens area. Founded as Athens-Clarke Heritage Foundation in 1967.

For more information, contact: 

Tommy Valentine
(706) 296-3583