The National WWII Museum Names Birnbaum Director Of WWII Media And Education Center
NEW ORLEANS – The National WWII Museum in New Orleans has named Gemma R. Birnbaum as director of the institution’s newly-developed WWII Media and Education Center. The Center, which will be housed in the Museum’s upcoming Hall of Democracy, is designed to disseminate knowledge on World War II through online access to Museum programs and products, and through distance learning and digital programs.
Birnbaum, formerly the Museum’s assistant director of education for curriculum, will work alongside top historians and other media professionals to advance teaching about the American experience in World War II to students, teachers and wider audiences around the globe – and to take the Museum to new frontiers beyond the physical campus in New Orleans.
“Gemma is one of the leading voices in the nation in her field of study and has been an outstanding contributor to the Museum’s education initiatives since she joined us over seven years ago,” said Stephen J. Watson, president & CEO at The National WWII Museum. “She is committed to preserving the experiences, artifacts and the first-person oral histories of World War II so that they will be available to educate future generations on the sacrifices made to secure our freedom.”
Birnbaum has been with The National WWII Museum since 2010, joining the team as digital education coordinator. In her most recent role as assistant director of education for curriculum, she oversaw the production and content curation of all digital learning projects, distance learning initiatives, curriculum materials, student programs, teacher professional development and special and traveling exhibit educational resources. Her team also launched the first in a series of produced curricula, titled “From the Collection to the Classroom: Teaching History with The National WWII Museum,” which has been distributed to more than 2,000 teachers nationwide.
Birnbaum holds a Bachelor of Arts in the History of Modern War and Genocide from New York University and a master’s in the History of Twentieth Century Labor & Industrialization from Tulane University. In addition to teaching roles at the Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust in New York City and Heifer International in Arkansas – she spent several years working in customer relations, fundraising and user interface design at internet startups in New York and at the Purdue University Research Park in West Lafayette, Indiana.
The National WWII Museum tells the story of the American experience in the war that changed the world – why it was fought, how it was won, and what it means today – so that future generations will know the price of freedom and be inspired by what they learn, reps said. Dedicated in 2000 as The National D-Day Museum and now designated by Congress as America’s National WWII Museum, it celebrates the American spirit, the teamwork, optimism, courage and sacrifices of the men and women who fought on the battlefront and served on the Home Front.
The 2017 TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice™ awards ranks the Museum No. 2 in the world and No. 2 in the nation.