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Historical Society to welcome new leaders, present awards

This year’s keynote speaker for the Merced County Historical Society's annual membership meeting is columnist Steve Newvine.
This year’s keynote speaker for the Merced County Historical Society’s annual membership meeting is columnist Steve Newvine.

The Merced County Historical Society will hold its annual membership meeting on Sunday, Feb. 9 at 2 p.m. at the Merced County Board of Supervisors’ Chambers.

The following slate of officers of the Board of Directors will be presented for approval: Julie Marchini, President; Carlene Cunningham, President Elect; Mike Bik, Vice President; Grey Roberts, Treasurer; Patti Kishi, Secretary; Board of Directors: Kathy Brady (Dos Palos), John Carlos (Merced), Chet Downey (Los Banos), Joyce Mattos (Snelling), Chris Tomford (Merced), and Bob Souza (Merced).

The honorable Ronald Hansen, Retired Judge of the Merced County Superior Court, will administer the swearing-in ceremony.

Past President Neil Morse will be honored for his leadership and service.

The Historical Society will also present several awards and grants to individuals and local organizations for their efforts in preserving and maintaining Merced County history.

Two historical projects will each receive $2,500 of the Rossotti Capital Improvement Grant this year. The Merced Women’s Club will use this matching fund in its on-going effort to replace the roof of the historic clubhouse (built in 1926) on 22nd Street. The Atwater, Dos Palos, Gustine, Hilmar/Irwin/Stevinson, and Milliken Museum (Los Banos) Historical Societies will share the second Rossotti Grant for their museum collection management projects. The grant will enable them to purchase a collection management software and hire a museum tech who will help set up the program and train the staff/volunteers.

The 2020 Estep-Burchell Historical Community Grant will be presented to Dos Palos Historical Society for its historic photo digitalization project.

The 2019 Letus Wallace Award will be presented to the members of Gustine Historical Society for their contributions in the exhibition of the centennial history of Our Lady of Miracles Church.

The 2019 Heacox Pioneer History Award will be presented to Tom Gaffery whose research assistance has led to the curation of several museum exhibits.

Longtime Museum volunteer Joyce Hambley will receive the 2019 Docent of the Year award for her decades of service to the Courthouse Museum as a Gift Shop docent.

This year’s keynote speaker is Steve Newvine, columnist for Merced County Events. Growing up in upstate New York, Mr. Newvine became a television journalist after college. Now living in Merced, he is a prolific author of both fiction and nonfiction including 9 From 99: Experiences from California’s Central Valley and California Back Roads.
This membership meeting and program is open to the public.

For more information, please contact the museum office at 723-2401 or visit us at

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