DHS Welcomes Dr. David W. Young As Executive Director

The Delaware Historical Society has announced that David W. Young, Ph.D., has been hired as the next Executive Director of the organization, following a months-long national search.

Dr. Young has served as Executive Director of Cliveden, a National Trust for Historic Preservation property in the Germantown section of Philadelphia, since 2006. The innovative and collaborative programming he developed for Cliveden, the Revolutionary-era home of the Benjamin Chew family, engages both the war for independence and the struggle for emancipation. It has been supported by grants from Pew Center for Arts and Heritage, the Pennsylvania Abolition Society, and the National Endowment for Humanities, among many others, and has received state and national awards. Dr. Young has also served as president of Historic Germantown, a consortium of independent historic sites united to promote and preserve the shared stories of the neighborhood as a community.

Prior to his tenure at Cliveden, Dr. Young was the Executive Director of the Johnson House Historic Site, one the few intact stops on the Underground Railroad, and of the Salem County Historical Society in Salem, New Jersey. He also served as Director of Education at the Atwater Kent Museum of Philadelphia History. Dr. Young received his Doctoral and Master of Arts degrees in History from Ohio State University and his Bachelor of Arts in German Studies from Northwestern University. He is a member of the National Landmarks Committee, an advisory board of the National Park Service. He has served as a lecturer in the Graduate Program in Historic Preservation at the University of Pennsylvania School of Design and is the author of books and articles on public history and historical interpretation.

“We are enthusiastic about Dr. Young’s leadership of the Delaware Historical Society” said Margaret L. Laird, Chair of the DHS Board of Trustees. “We were overwhelmed by the number and extremely high caliber of the individuals who expressed an interest in this position. The selection was challenging in every way, but we were unanimous in our agreement that Dr. Young’s unique combination of skills and experience is an excellent fit for the strategic direction we have laid out for the Delaware Historical Society.”

Young said, “I am eager to build on the great work of the board and staff of the Delaware Historical Society and to continue my interests in the history of the Mid-Atlantic region by engaging audiences, members, and communities statewide to showcase the powerful stories Delaware has to offer.”

Dr. Young will begin his work at the Delaware Historical Society at the end of June.