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Biz buzz: Napa County Historical Society names Smith as new director

  • Updated

The board of the Napa County Historical Society announced the hiring of Dr. Sheli O. Smith, as executive director.

Dr. Smith, currently the board vice president, was recruited by Liz Alessio, interim executive director.

“I knew Sheli was the ideal person for the job, I just needed two years to convince her,” Alessio said.

“Sheli has already helped curate the very successful exhibit, ‘Who Tells Our Story’, and her timeline in the entry hall of the Goodman Exhibit reflecting Napa County’s history is entertaining and informative, a favorite of all visitors.”

A Napa native, Smith graduated from Justin-Siena High School and went on to study Anthropology at the University of Arizona, eventually specializing in Maritime Archaeology. She received her Masters from Texas A&M University and a doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania. Previously, Sheli worked in maritime museums doing research and curation, returning to California to work with California State Parks in the study and preservation of the state’s maritime heritage.

“This is a wonderful opportunity,” said Smith. “I am honored to be selected.”


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