Jane Slate Siena

Head, Institutional Relations, Director's Office

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Music was Jane Slate Siena's first artistic passion. A native of Clarksville, Tennessee, she studied piano and violin in her undergraduate years, later receiving a master of music degree from the University of Wisconsin. Afterward, she returned to Tennessee where she worked as a music teacher, coach, and competition organizer, serving also as pianist for the Metropolitan Opera Regional Auditions and consultant to the Tennessee State Museum. During this time, she became the first artist to receive studio financing from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

In 1982 she moved to Washington, D.C., where she became a Program Coordinator for the National Institute for Conservation, just at a time when interest in conservation was growing. While in Washington, she conducted several national studies, including an American Association of Museums report mandated by Congress that assessed conservation needs and resulted in new federal programs for U.S. museums. Among the studies were several for the Getty Conservation Institute, and in 1985 she joined the GCI as Special Projects Coordinator, becoming a Program Officer the following year.

The founding editor of The GCI Newsletter and now its Managing Editor, Ms. Siena presently serves as Head of Institutional Relations for the Institute. Working with other national and international organizations dedicated to the arts and conservation, she has organized conferences and partnerships as part of the GCI's efforts to increase conservation awareness and resources. She initiated the Institute's timely involvement in Saint Petersburg with the Russian Academy of Sciences Library and has helped to shape the GCI's work on the problems of historic cities—in particular its projects in Quito, Ecuador.

In addition to her work at the Institute, she is chairperson of National Musical Arts, the chamber music ensemble in residence at the National Academy of Sciences (now in its 15th season). She also serves as co-organizer of art at the vice president's residence in Washington, D.C. When at home, she still occasionally finds time to play her 1889 Chickering piano.

 

Cecily M. Grzywacz

Associate Scientist, Scientific Program

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Born and raised in Los Angeles, Cecily Grzywacz graduated from high school as class valedictorian and started college at California State University, Northridge, with the intention of becoming an accountant. Two years later she switched to chemistry, in part because she considered it her most challenging subject. Graduating with a bachelor of science degree, she was uncertain what vocation to pursue. Because her instructors urged her to continue her chemistry studies, she did so while working as a technician in the corporate research laboratory of ARCO.

In 1985, on a whim, she applied for a Research Assistant position in the GCI's Scientific Program. At the time she knew little about conservation but was intrigued by the possibility of applying her knowledge of chemistry to a humanistic pursuit—having been raised in a household with politically liberal and artistic leanings, she found this appealing. She had no expectation of being offered the job—but she was, a week following her interview.

Ms. Grzywacz's research at the Institute has concentrated on liquid chromatographic analysis. Her work on the application of high performance liquid chromatography to binding-media identification formed the basis of the thesis for her master's degree in chemistry (received in 1992). Since 1986 her research efforts have also focused on the museum environment, as she has helped to identify and validate cost-efficient passive monitors that can measure the presence of low concentrations of indoor pollutants. It has been gratifying for her to disseminate the results of her work, and she particularly enjoys her participation in the GCI's annual training course on preventive conservation.

She is continuing work on passive monitors and hopes in the future to investigate the effectiveness of pollution mitigation measures. She remains excited by the challenge of finding ways to turn high-tech research into accessible applications. In addition, her enthusiasm for organizing has prompted her active involvement in a variety of committees, which have included the GCI's Open House Planning Committee and the J. Paul Getty Trust's Staff Events Committee.