Christina Doe is The Rosenbach’s multifaceted, multitalented facilities manager. Her path to The Rosenbach is varied and fascinating. After graduating from Moore College of Art and Design with a degree in 2D art, specializing in drawing and printmaking, she worked in a Philadelphia art supply store. Here, she not only created the window displays but managed the staff. Christina is an artist. Her next move was to the First Unitarian Church, a historic landmark and Frank Furness building. There, as the Sexton she managed the grounds and the building, but also managed an extensive concert, theater and church schedule. Christina is a physical plant professional, gardener, sound technician and house manager. From First Unitarian Christina moved to The Eastern State Penitentiary in security, giving tours and also performing as a ghoulish figure who jumps out to scare visitors. Christina is a tour guide, security guard, and knows how to apply fake blood to great effect. It follows that she fits in perfectly at The Rosenbach.
While all non-profit employees wear many hats, Christina turns it into an art. The physical maintenance of a historic house and museum is no easy task. The temperature and relative humidity are vitally important to the upkeep of The Rosenbach’s extensive collection. Regular checks on insect activity keep a collection heavy on paper, textiles and leather from being eaten…yes, eaten! Christina prepares our gallery spaces for new exhibitions by cleaning and painting. She also aids with art handling needs and exhibition installation. If something, pretty much anything, is broken in the building, Christina is our first responder. This includes our technology and phone system. And as we are open to the public six days a week, Christina makes sure that our spaces are clean and ready for visitors, including setting up for all The Rosenbach’s events. This responsibility includes our annual Bloomsday festival where we have been known to have close to two thousand people join us on Delancey Place to hear a live reading of James Joyce’s Ulysses! Christina has a map of the street that shows exactly where the chairs, vendor tables, beer garden, speakers and sound equipment must go. The execution would be impossible without her!
While we are closed to the public, Christina is making sure that our collection and buildings are maintained and in proper working order, ready for when we are able to open our doors once again. She is also getting some work done that is challenging to accomplish when the museum is open. For instance, giving the historic house a thorough cleaning. This is not a job that can be done with your everyday feather duster and sponge mop! She has special tools, brushes, gloves, soft cloths, and a vacuum with a particular filter and a cover over the nozzle so as not to damage the textiles with suction
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