Barb Teatero takes part in her last Brant festival at LaSalle Park as the Director of Burlington's Museums.

News 100 yellowBy Pepper Parr

August 6th, 2019

BURLINGTON, ON

Revisions were made to this story correcting the length of time Barb Teatero served with the Museum – 35 years.

Teatero Barb - last Brant event.

Barb Teatero, Museums of Burlington Director at her last Brant Festival event.

It was not Barb Teatero’s last day on the job but it was her last Brant Day event at LaSalle Park.

She is reported to ave been a every Brant day for the past 36 years.

Barb retires on September 9th – turning the reigns over to Kimberly Anne Watson.

“I told my Board in January that I was ready to retire. I just don’t have the level of enthusiasm and energy I used to have – it was time for new blood and different ideas.

“I loved the job and the new Museum that will be open to the public in the very near future is something the public is going to just love.

“It isn’t going to be an ‘indigenous Museum’. It is going to be a very modern place and there will be the appropriate exhibit of Joseph Brant material – this city was built on the land grant he was given by the British.

Teatero withher husband

Barb Teatero with her husband during the ground breaking ceremonies

Barb’s husband retired 13 years ago and he wants to do some traveling and she feels she has done everything she could do to get the museum she has worked with for more than 35 years to the point where it will become a major provincial destination.

Getting to the point where the transformed Brant Museum is close to ready for its public debut has been a long haul for Teatero. She applauds city council for keeping “a critical” $2.5 million in the capital reserve budget for as long as they did.

Several members of city council were always concerned that a bigger museum would become another financial bleeder

Teatero is both grateful and proud for the $4.5 million the federal government came through with. “The grant we got was the biggest grant ever given to a cultural group in the country.”

The support for the museum has not been universal across the city. Of the two venues – Ireland House has the best reputation – and a well-deserved one at that.

The Brant operation has been spotty.

gorget

The gorget, a piece of armour worn around the neck was presented to Captain Joseph Brant by King George III

Teatero bent every ear she could find, twisted every arm there was and was indefatigable in her efforts to get the funding place.  She once dragged Mayor Rick Goldring to a venue that was an example of where she wanted the Brant transformation to be.

Making the transformed site an operational success is in the hands of the new Director who will bring her own signature to the task.

Barb has worked with the volunteers at Freeman Station – advising the group of volunteers who have made the impossible real.  She is quick to point out that volunteers are the life blood of the place; she cannot say enough about the role volunteers have played in getting the Museum to where it is today.

On August 13th there will be a special event to recognize the role those donours have played.

With the short interview with Barb done we watched as she did what she always does – tidies things up and tucks things away.

On the day that the formal announcement was made on the funding and on the day that the ground breaking ceremonies were performed one could see Barb putting something away or closing a cabinet door.

She “mothered” the place for years – she will miss it and the building will miss her.

It is reported that the stairs in the Brant replica came from the original structure – one thinks of Barb Teatero and Joseph Brant using the same set of stairs and the same hand rail – centuries apart.

Related news story:

New Director for Museums of Burlington

 

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1 comment to Barb Teatero takes part in her last Brant festival at LaSalle Park as the Director of Burlington’s Museums.

  • Roger

    “It isn’t going to be an ‘indigenous Museum’. It is going to be a very modern place and there will be the appropriate exhibit of Joseph Brant material – this city was built on the land grant he was given by the British.

    This is disturbing – ignoring if not removing the impact of the aboriginal story from Burlington – do not expect I will ever cross the entrance

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