Jane Fischer named to lead Heritage Center

Mark Roberts has enjoyed watching Roger Sherrock fall in love with his job as executive director of the Heritage Center and “go above and beyond” what had been expected of him time and again.

He seems as excited about what Jane Fischer will bring to the position with her background in museum management and fundraising and through the solid connections she’s established with the center’s staff and community in three years as development officer.

Roberts, a college history major who has practiced law in Springfield for decades, has been off and on the center’s board for years, is now its treasurer and was a member of the search committee that selected Fischer.

“I always had this feeling that when (Sherrock) became operations manager, he might not have foreseen (the center) as the rest of his working life,” Roberts said.

(In an interview for today’s stories, Sherrock said he had expected to stay three years.)

“That he stayed on is a great thing for the (Historical) Society, and I just have great personal affection for him.”

Roberts said the search committee had considered a nationwide search for a new executive director because of the common wisdom that fresher ideas come from outside, “but we never got to that point,” he said.

In an initial interview “she had all these ideas lined up” and left the committee with the feeling “we have the best of both worlds” — someone with her feet on the ground ready to go.

She had brought the same kind of excitement when first hired and invited to a meeting of the committee working on the passage of the Heritage Center tax levy, he said.

Roberts said Fischer also has “ingrained herself in the community” both as a member, now a board member of the Springfield Rotary Club and with The Greater Springfield Association of Fundraising Professionals

“She’s a doer,” he said.

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