Staff Profile: Wendy Fitch
Wendy Fitch might be newly minted as our Executive Director—she stepped into that role last February—but she’s not new to the organization: Wendy has been with the Museums Association of Saskatchewan for nearly 27 years.
Wendy was born in Saskatoon and spent part of her childhood in the Abernethy/Balcarres area. She moved around a lot during her childhood and early career, but after working at the Red Deer and District Museum, interning at the Manitoba Museum, and working for the heritage branch of the Alberta government, Wendy came back home to Saskatchewan in 1986, when she started a new job as MAS’s Museums Advisor.
“I was young then,” Wendy says, “and the museum volunteers liked to test me before they’d take my opinion seriously.” For instance, someone might drop an artifact in front of her and demand to know what it was. “I’m from a rural background, as well as spending a lot of time in museums,” Wendy says, “so I usually knew. After I told them, ‘that’s a hog scraper,’ or whatever it was, then they’d shift their cap back, grin, and hear me out—but not before.”
Wendy doesn’t face pop quizzes on artifacts very often anymore, but her new role as Executive Director has brought new challenges.
“MAS has always worked hard to serve our members,” she says, “and as times change—and technology and demographics change along with them—we need to think outside the box, to come up with new ways to best serve the province’s museums.”
Amid all the change facing the province, though, it’s important not to lose sight of the fundamentals. “Change gives us a chance to grow, to get better at what we do,” Wendy says, “but the core of what we do stays the same. In the end, helping to preserve the stories that comprise Saskatchewan’s history and heritage is what it’s all about.”