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Commencement Speaker

December 2013 Commencement Speaker

Brian J. Howard, Executive Director
Oneida County Historical Society

Brian Howard is a central New York native who grew up in New Berlin, 40 miles south of Utica.  While he hails from Chenango County his roots stretch back to the 1790s in Oneida County, when his ancestors moved to the area from Connecticut.

A 1982 visit to the U.S.S. Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii spurred his passion for history and led to a career in the museum field.  He majored in history at SUNY Potsdam and attended the Texas Tech University Museum Graduate Program, earning his Master's degree in Museum Science in 1994.  Nine years of work in aviation museums in Maryland and in New York’s Southern Tier were followed by five years at his family’s lumber company.  Since 2007 he's applied his museum and business experience as the Oneida County Historical Society’s executive director.

Over the last three years Brian has shared his interest as an adjunct professor at SUNYIT, teaching both Early and Modern America.  In his spare time he is a physical fitness devotee who completed his first triathlon in August 2013.  He and his wife of 18 years, Paula, live in Sherburne with their two teenage sons.