We've got a core crew of amazing folks volunteering tirelessly to provide our community with a downtown museum showcasing our heritage, covering everything from 1776 to the twentieth century.
EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE OFFICERS
PRESIDENT: Ray Midgett. Retired after 32 years as a public school educator, where he served as a teacher and information technology professional. He moved to Washington in 2005 and worked with the City of Washington as the Information Technology Director until 2011. Is a history buff, who collects stories about Coastal North Carolina and shares them through a history blog and newspaper articles. Serves on the Waterfront Docks Advisory committee for the City of Washington. He graduated from UNC and has a Master of Education from UNCG. Raised in a Coast Guard family, he proudly volunteers as a member of the U. S. Coast Guard Auxiliary.
VICE PRESIDENT: Stephen Farrell. Originally born and raised in Aberdeen, NC. From an early age, Stephen became interested in history, focusing on the military and North Carolina history. Farrell studied at East Carolina University and holds a B.A. in History from the University of North Carolina Pembroke. Farrell interned at the Tufts Archives in Pinehurst, NC, where he pursued further education in the museum and archival field. Farrell is currently the reference specialist/genealogist at the Brown Library, where he looks forward to helping patrons with their requests for genealogical information and local history.
SECRETARY: Gail Baird. Gail retired to Beaufort County after 30 years in the software industry. Her main interests are tennis, pickleball, travel, history, and art. Gail graduated from NCSU with an accounting degree, followed by a CPA license. Learning about the history of Washington, NC, is exciting, especially when working on HPOW fundraising projects and HPOW event planning.
TREASURER: Dave Robinson. Dave was born in New York City but spent his childhood on the Great South Bay of eastern Long Island. His undergraduate and graduate business/computer science studies were done at the State University of New York Oswego campus on the shore of Lake Ontario. He has always loved being near the water. He recently retired from a 43-year career as the Manufacturing Technology Architect for a Colorado-based company. When it came time to choose a place to spend my retirement, the Inner Banks of North Carolina was the right choice. He hopes to do his part to support the local community and its rich heritage.
BOARD OF TRUSTEES
TRUSTEE (Chairperson): Billie Jean Mallison. A resident of the Washington Historic District for almost 40 years, she currently resides in the old neighborhood of Nicholsonville, where she enjoys her 1940s cottage and Monarch butterfly-oriented gardens. She is a retired Beaufort County social worker/case manager with a varied background in social work, education, and the liberal arts. She enjoys researching local history, helping to create exhibits, and editing the newsletter for HPOW, and she is a past Treasurer of HPOW. Other local civic groups she supports include but are not limited to Sound Rivers, ReLeaf Washington, and the local chapter of DAR.
TRUSTEE: Joan Cottle. Born and raised in rural Duplin County. Received an associate's Degree in Accounting and attended Mt Olive University for Human Resources. Started my career as a Staff Accountant at a CPA firm. After several years, moved into Home Health and Hospice Management and Human Resources. After ten years there, I founded my own HR consulting firm concentrated on Home Healthcare. During that time, I made my first trip to Little Washington (as we in Duplin called it) to visit a client. I never expected to be living in this beautiful river town. My husband and I moved across the river to the Cypress Landing Community in 2015 when his job brought us to the area. We soon realized that downtown Washington was where we should be. So we sold our house there and purchased the perfect home on Main Street, built in 1896. I have always loved everything old and its history, especially buildings and architecture. I also enjoy volunteering and fundraising. So HPOW checks all those boxes for me. During my free time, I love to make things: crafting, sewing, and painting. Most recently, I have started a Crafting Business offering classroom-style sessions to inspire and teach others the joys of making and creating.
TRUSTEE: Keith Hackney. Keith is a general practice attorney serving Washington since 1975. Mr. Hackney practices corporation and business law, real estate law, environmental law, wills, trusts, estate planning, and probate law.
TRUSTEE: Elaine McClure. Originally from Rochester, NY. Earned a BS degree from Purdue University. She was a sportswear buyer for a specialty store and department store in Houston, TX, and Washington, DC. After many years in the retail business, she joined Girl Scouts of the USA in their uniform and equipment division. Utilized my retail skills for a good cause, namely Girl Scouts. In retirement, She found the wonderful town of Washington, NC, to enjoy her retirement years. Quilting is a favorite activity, along with studying American and local history.
TRUSTEE: Jim Mezzanotte. Jim attended the University of Connecticut, BS Accounting 1965, and Yale Law School in 1968. Attended Columbia Bible College – Master of Divinity Program, Charlotte, NC. Chief Executive Officer of NC Coastal Marina Development, LL. Chief Executive Officer of Managed Integrated Due Diligence Services, LLC, and a practicing attorney with an office in Clinton, CT. From 2006 through 2016, I was Director of Due Diligence for American Realty Capital and coordinated the firm’s due diligence and closing functions. I was also responsible for coordinating the project management and portfolio management processes, reporting directly to Nicholas Schorsch, William Kahane, Edward M. Weil, and Jesse Charles Galloway. Before joining American Realty Capital, I was engaged as a consultant by American Financial Realty Trust. In this capacity, I managed process mapping for all departments as they related to the company’s leases and tenants. The results were then applied to preparing playbooks for the company’s three largest tenants. I previously served as a consultant to Bank of America for a period of three years. My primary responsibility was managing, structuring, negotiating, and coordinating a series of sales/leasebacks designed to substantially reduce the Bank’s vacancies. I also had oversight of all closing and post-closing items, including surveys, lease supplements, measured drawings, environmental issues, and demising work for over 500 buildings. I have been engaged in the real estate business for over 20 years as an owner, contractor, developer, and consultant. Prior thereto I practiced law for over 20 years, specializing in tax and corporate matters.
TRUSTEE: Blount Rumley. Born in Washington in 1941, his family roots in the region date from the eighteenth century. He was infused with the area's history through the stories of friends and relatives and through their written accounts. After retiring from the family auto and industrial supply business, he enjoyed over seventeen years as Manager of the North Carolina Estuarium. Formerly on the Board of Directors of the North Carolina Maritime History Council, he is now fully involved in archival and literary pursuits.
TRUSTEE: Scott Sachs. Born and raised in New Bedford, MA, which, during the 19th century, was one of the world's most important whaling ports. At its economic height during this period, New Bedford was the wealthiest city in the world per capita. Currently, it is home to the largest commercial fishing port in the United States. It is because of this that my fascination with history started. As a teenager, I would walk around the historic neighborhoods, old wharves, and warehouses, imagining what it was like at the turn of the century. Washington is like a very small New Bedford in that sense with its history, which led me to join HPOW in early 2021.