Finding inspiration in the past, creating meaning for the present and planning for the future.


Dr. Thomas A. Woods
Making Sense of Place, Inc.

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• B.A. summa cum laude, M.A. and Ph.D. in American Studies

• Expertly combines academic concepts with intriguing, interactive public programming.

• Many publications, including a book on agricultural history, and several articles on interpretive theory; pioneered the inquiry, perspectivistic interpretive method.

• Crafted a path-breaking design for interpretive manuals by using a systematic approach that combines themes and desired learner outcomes with objects (artifacts, plants, or animals), stories and interactive activities, then overlays a strategy to manage the message that is useful for most forms of personal interpretation.

• A leader in developing and publishing interpretive theory, and an innovative interpretive master planner.

• Broad experience with more than twenty years in interpretation, interpretive planning, and administration.

• Expert workshop leader and planning facilitator.

• Experience with nature centers, small historic sites, a historic sites system of more than 30 historic sites, and a large, complex open-air museum.

• Experience as a director and a front-line interpreter at nature centers, living history farms, and historic sites.

• A leading advocate of integrating environmental history into interpretive programs at museums, historic sites, and environmental centers.