NHA hires Daniel Elias as Robyn & John Davis Chief Curator

NANTUCKET, MA – The Nantucket Historical Association (NHA) is pleased to announce the appointment of Daniel Elias as the Robyn & John Davis Chief Curator.

Elias comes to the position with wide experience in the arts and museum operations. Familiar to many from his time as host of WGBH’s Antiques Roadshow, Elias has made a career of engaging communities through the experience of art. He spent seven years at the Peabody Essex Museum as Project Director of a major federal grant fostering cross-cultural educational initiatives with partners in Native American, Native Hawaiian, and Alaska Native cultural organizations as well as museums with collections of material from indigenous source communities. Formerly a contemporary art curator and gallerist, since 1999 Elias has worked closely with communities to enhance their understanding of the role of fine and decorative arts in human society and culture.

Patricia Anathan, NHA Trustee and Collections Committee Chair, says, “I have had the pleasure of getting to know Dan over the last few months. His success in reimagining Hadwen House is only one of the many reasons that I am so excited about having the opportunity to work with him in the future. He will do great things with our fantastic collections.”

“Dan brings the right mix of curatorial skills and collections knowledge,” says James Russell, Gosnell Executive Director. “As we broaden our stories beyond whaling, Dan’s expertise is important and necessary. Over the past six months, he has proven himself adept at working both with staff and constituents. As part of the senior management team, his expertise will help guide the organization.”

Elias has a bachelor’s degree in fine arts from the Boston Museum School/Tufts University, and a master’s degree in museum studies from Harvard University. A lifelong summer resident of the Elizabeth Islands and Martha’s Vineyard, Elias is an avid sailor, fisherman, kayaker, and island enthusiast.


The Nantucket Historical Association preserves and interprets the history of Nantucket through its programs, collections, and properties, in order to promote the island’s significance and foster an appreciation of it among all audiences.

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