National Museum of Kenya
Head of Exhibitions
Eileen is a creative, diligent design graduate with strong interpersonal and leadership skills. She has over twelve years’ experience designing and developing Exhibitions for Museums and before that, eight years’ experience in the private sector in design related fields. She loves to communicate through design and to make learning fun!
Eileen is currently the head of the Exhibitions Section, under the Directorate of Antiquities, Sites and Monuments, National Museums of Kenya. Her responsibilities consist of supporting the Exhibitions team to deliver on its core functions to the museum and linking with the various departments that provide research and objects for the exhibitions. She also works closely with the Education and Public programmes sections in delivering and interpreting public programmes for the museum, and with the various curators in coming up with new exhibitions and maintaining the established ones.
Eileen joined the Museum in 2006 when it was undergoing tremendous refurbishment, and participated in the development of the permanent exhibitions at the Nairobi National Museum. Since then, she has been involved in setting up and maintaining exhibitions in regional museums that make up the National Museums of Kenya. She also shared skills with colleagues in Ethiopia towards the refurbishment of the permanent history exhibition at the National Museum of Ethiopia.
More recently, she is involved in advising and organising the establishment of private sector exhibitions and museums, notably the Central Bank of Kenya’s Numismatic Exhibition, the Maritime Museum, the Power Museum of the Kenya Electricity Generating Board and the Civil Aviation Museum. She is also a member of the team developing the Kenya Exhibition at the Aswan Nile Museum, Egypt.
Eileen also enjoys working on temporary exhibitions in her museum, such as the Kanga Stories textile exhibition, the People with Disabilities exhibition planned in line with this year’s ICOM theme, and Rebirth of a Legend that tells the story of a famous revered snake. She also shares skills with new museum professionals and interns from time to time.
In addition to design work, Eileen worked as a Curator at the Nairobi Gallery, Karen Blixen Museum and at the Nairobi National Museum, positions that vastly added to her experience in the heritage profession.
She furthered her training in education programmes by taking part in the British Museums’ Getty East Africa Programme, from 2013-2014. This programme offered a series of workshops on core museum skills for staff working at the national museums of Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. The main objective was to create a network of dedicated museum professionals in both national and regional museums.
At the British Museum
During her time on the International Training Programme in 2008, Eileen was based in the Department of Africa, Oceania and the Americas and her partner placement was spent at the National Museum Wales. Her experiences at the ITP were the confidence boost she needed to find her place in the museum world.
In March 2010 Eileen attended the Cairo Conference Towards a global network where she presented a paper on what she had gained, both professionally and personally, from attending the ITP and her career development since the programme.
Eileen returned to the British Museum in 2013 in the role of Senior Fellow. She supported the ITP team in the build up to, during and after the Summer Programme, attended by 21 museum professionals from 10 countries.
In November 2015 Eileen attended the ITP Mumbai Workshop Creating Museums of World Stories. The workshop was held at CSMVS and was attended by many ITP fellows from different years and countries, UK partners and British Museum Colleagues.
In November 2018 Eileen participated in the ITP MA Conference programme in Belfast. With fellows from Egypt, Lesotho and Turkey, Eileen attended a programme structured around National Museums Northern Ireland and the three-day MA Conference on Dissent: inspiring hope, embracing change.
ITP Newsletter Publications
ITP Newsletter Issue 2 (2015), Legacy projects and cascade training: ITP legacy project: past participant