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Freedom Center Announces New President

After six months of searching, the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center announces its new president today.

Doctor C.G. Newsome comes to Cincinnati from Duke University, where he's a member of the board of trustees.
Local 12's Tiffany Wilson spoke to Doctor Newsome about his plans for the center.
As the Freedom Center nears its ten-year anniversary, Doctor C.G. Newsome signals new leadership for a new decade.

"My wife and I both see this as a wonderful, indeed, a magnificent opportunity."

Doctor Newsome says both his family history and career trajectory led him to this role.

"I am a descendent of a person who was a runaway slave."

"Then our careers have really dealt with this theme of freedom one way or another."

When the Freedom Center opened, they expected to operate off earned income, but over the past 10 years they realized donations were key to sustainability. That's why they needed a president with fundraising experience.

"Do you feel you have strong fundraising experience?  As humbly as I can answer that question absolutely."

Since the merger with the Museum Center last year, the Freedom Center balanced its budget and increased its endowment.

Elizabeth Pierce, Spokesperson, Freedom Center:
"We're really positioned to do well and having someone like Dr. Newsome... is a key piece of that going forward."

About 100-thousand people visit the center annually, but much of its work extends beyond Cincinnati.  The center produced this video called "Journey to Freedom" in partnership with Google and the State Department. It's been shown in 50 embassies around the world.  Doctor Newsome hopes to expand this type of outreach.

"This is a world resource."

Doctor Newsome is also a former president of Shaw University in North Carolina and he previously served as dean of the school of divinity at Howard University in Washington, DC.




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