The Historical Society of Princeton has selected Isabel “Izzy” Kasdin, currently the group’s curator of collections and exhibitions, as the organization’s new executive director.
Kasdin, pictured above, who studied history at Princeton University, earned several prestigious prizes for history research as a student. Following her graduation in 2014, Kasdin earned a masters in archaeological heritage and museums at the University of Cambridge in England as a Gates Scholar. She has also had experience working in a number of other historical organizations and museums, including the Ford’s Theater Society in Washington, D.C. and the Cambridge Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. She completed her archaeological field school training in Colonial American material culture at the College of William and Mary in 2011.
Kasdin is the daughter of Kef Kasdin, a venture capitalist who was a partner at Battelle Ventures, and Jeremy Kasdin, a Princeton professor who is now the vice dean of the engineering school.
“After reviewing a broad pool of talented candidates, we concluded that the person with the most compelling combination of experience, energy, and vision was already working inside the organization,” said Scott Sipprelle, president of the HSP Board of Trustees. “Izzy is very much a known quantity here at HSP, having served the organization since 2007 in a variety of roles including docent, researcher, and exhibitions assistant,” said Sipprelle.
“As curator Izzy has provided the insight of an historian and the rigor of an academic to the review and formal inventory of HSP’s important collections currently underway,” said Daniel C. Scheid, vice president of collections and a member of the search committee. “In her new role, she will use her creativity to link these collections not only to the past but to the exciting history that is being made in Princeton today.”
“I firmly believe in the importance of local history in building community, promoting empathy, and enhancing sense of place,” Kasdin said. “It is an honor to lead the charge at the Historical Society, in my home town. I am bursting with innovative ideas about how we can use our collections and beautiful farm to develop diverse public programming that pushes the boundaries of the traditional local history museum model.”
Historical Society of Princeton, 354 Quaker Road, Updike Farmstead, Princeton 08540; 609-921-6748; fax, 609-921-6939, www.princetonhistory.org.