About NMA

Our Mission

The NMA encourages, equips and unites individuals and their organizations to elevate the cultural community of Nebraska.


  • To improve and maintain communication among museums throughout Nebraska.
  • To promote professional standards and development for museums and their staffs.
  • To serve as an information source for local, state, and federal government and other decision-making authorities on issues relating to Nebraska museums.
  • To promote the sharing of museum resources to benefit all Nebraskans.
  • To promote the understanding of Nebraska history, culture and natural history through public education.
  • To promote joint marketing of Nebraska museums to enhance their image as family and travel attractions.
  • To disseminate information of importance to museums through production of a newsletter, seminars, annual meetings, and other educational activities.
  • To cooperate with other professional organizations and associations both within and outside the state of Nebraska.
  • To solicit and receive grants, contributions, and other property, to enter into contracts, to engage needed personnel and services, and to transfer, hold, and invest such real property as may be required to carry out the purposes of the association.


  • Tax exempt status: private, non-profit
  • Governance structure: elected board
  • Number of board members: 16
  • Board function: advisory, policy, operations, service delivery, fund raising, advocacy


  • Membership categories, dues: $15 / Fiscal Year (Jan. 1 – Dec. 31)
  • Operating budget: $5,000 – $10,000
  • Audit: biannual
  • In-kind support: Free use of office equipment, museum staff allowed to do NMA business on museum’s time.


  • NMA Bylaws (revised and approved April 4, 2017)


The Nebraska Museums Association presents awards for outstanding achievements in the museum field during its annual meeting in the fall. Members and non-members of NMA are invited and encouraged to nominate individuals and institutions for this year’s awards. Self-nominations are also accepted. There are two categories, including the Hugh H. Genoways Award of Achievement and the Award of Recognition.

  • Hugh H. Genoways Award: The Genoways Award is given in recognition of long-term or exceptionally outstanding contributions to museums in Nebraska. This award is named in honor of the museum association’s first president, Dr. Hugh H. Genoways, former director of the University of Nebraska State Museum. Dr. Genoways was the first recipient of this award in 1994. Other recipients include Don Hill, Curator of the Cass County Historical Society Museum in Plattsmouth, presented posthumously in 1996; Nebraska State Quilt Guild, for the Quilt Preservation Project in 1997; Karen O. Janovy, Curator of  Education, Sheldon Memorial Art Gallery and Assistant Professor of Museum Studies,  University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1999; Sandi Yoder, Executive Director, Stuhr Museum of the Prairie Pioneer, Grand Island.
  • Award of Recognition: The Award of Recognition is given for a specific exhibit, project, program, or individual achievement. This award recognizes the great work which museums across Nebraska accomplish each year.

Please send nominations, supporting materials, letters of support, etc., to: NMA President.


The Nebraska Museums Association (NMA) was established in 1990 as an outgrowth of the Nebraska Futures Project, Inc. This statewide task force felt that the quality of life could be advanced by contributing to Nebraska’s cultural resources.  Since 1990, NMA has worked to serve the needs of Nebraska’s cultural resources and those who care for them. A few of the projects undertaken by NMA include:

  • 2011 Round Table Discussion: Leadership styles and how that plays in building a successful organization and can help us improve our leadership. NMA work teams answered the questions: Why NMA, Who NMA, What can NMA bring to help the cultural non profits of Nebraska? Strategic Initiatives were set for Professional Development, Networking, Marketing, Shared Experiences, Membership, and 2012 Conference Planning.
  • IMLS PSP Textile Conservation Needs Assessment Project: A statewide assessment of the needs for textile conservation will be conducted, followed by a series of basic textile conservation care workshops offered in each region of the state. Outcomes will include training materials and may results in acquisition of textile conservation services through the Nebraska-based Ford Conservation Center, a division of the Nebraska State Historical Society.
  • Emergency Planning Guide: Underwritten by a grant from the Woods Charitable Fund, Inc., this project has involved a survey of emergency preparedness planning by Nebraska museums, development of a emergency preparedness planning workbook which offers step-by-step instructions for creating a useable emergency plan, and a series of workshops offered in each region of the state. 
  • Unclaimed Property Legislation: The Nebraska Museums Association assisted in creation of legislation to allow for the systematic resolution of ownership and disposition of unclaimed loans and property held by Nebraska museums and to protect the rights of museums, donors, and citizens.
  • Guild’s Quilt Preservation: Working with the Nebraska State Quilt Guild, NMA has assisted with a project to document quilt collections in public museums across the state and to provide assistance to participating museums in caring for their quilt collections.
  • Video Conference Grant Workshops: Bringing Speakers of National and International Distinction to Nebraska. These speakers include, among others, Michael Spock. Mr. Spock is considered A pioneer of children’s museum. In the 1960’s, Michael Spock worked at the venerable Boston Children’s Museum, one of the nation’s first such museums.