Director of Education, Worcester Art Museum
….one of the things that I think is important for communities is that there are community traditions and it’s those traditions that make you feel like you’re part of something and so “First Night Worcester” is really a community-building event. We work out into the community all during the year, we train teachers in different art forms; we organize school kids, and do a lot of things that then culminate at “First Night” along with the professional concerts and things like that. So you know I think that that’s the achievement that I’m most proud of with “First Night” is that it really has become this community-building event.
Honee A. Hess was born July 11, 1953 in New Orleans and moved to Worcester, Massachusetts in 1986 to take a job at the Worcester Art Museum where she is currently employed as the Director of Education. She lives in “Crown Hill” the first planned neighborhood in the city built in the middle of the 19th century. After the tragedies of Hurricane Katrina, she and her husband started hosting a charity event in order to raise money and awareness for victims of Katrina in New Orleans. In this interview, Honee Hess discusses growing up in New Orleans, having politically active parents, and how her educational opportunities led her to the Worcester Art Museum. She also expresses her love for New Orleans and how there have been many changes in favor of women in Worcester. Education, and political and social activism are the highlights of the interview, and her everyday life. She is active in Worcester’s First Night, Family Health Center, and the Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday celebration.