Our Mission

Our mission is to present The Branch House as the one place in Virginia where everyone can begin exploring design for the public good.  We strive to inspire our guests to discover and embrace their role in advancing design for the public good — design that creates connections, improves lives, strengthens communities, and transforms the world we share for the better.

Our Vision

Our vision is that with every visit, our guests leave with the inspiration, tools, and desire to advance design for the public good.

Contact Us

The Branch Museum of Architecture & Design

2501 Monument Ave

Richmond, VA 23220

(804) 655-6055

frontdesk@branchmuseum.org

Staff

Penelope C. Fletcher, Executive Director

John Christiansen, Director of Operations

Heather Ernst, Development and Events Manager

Tarin Jones, Museum Educator

Malia Bates, Communications, Media, Front Desk and Office Coordinator 

Elena Gavrilovic, Executive Assistant

All other inquiries can be directed to our Front Desk 

Board of Trustees

Robert A. Steele, FAIA, Chair – Beyond Ordinary Boundaries Architecture, PC (Richmond)

Steele is the Principal Architect of Beyond Ordinary Boundaries Architecture, a Richmond-based firm that specializes in élite residential and small commercial projects over a broad geographic area. A graduate of Virginia Tech, Bob gained experience in several firms in Washington D.C., before starting his own firm in 1988. Throughout his career, Bob has been dedicated to community leadership and has been an active participant in numerous Richmond arts and cultural organizations. In recognition of his contributions in this area, Steele has received awards from the AIA at the state and local level, as well as other regional and national groups. In 2018, he was recognized as Fellow by the American Institute of Architects.

Affiliations:

  • City of Richmond Public Arts Commission, 1996-2008, Chair 2000-2003
  • 1708 Gallery Board of Directors, 1992-2004, President 2001-2002
  • AIA Virginia, Board of Directors, 1994-1997 and 2014-2016
  • AIA Richmond, Board of Directors, 1989-1998 and 2011-2014, President 1995-1997 – AIA College of Fellows, 2018-present
  • Bon Air Community Association Board, 1994-present, President 2010-2017
  • Reimagining Monument Avenue Collective, 2020 – present, Chair

John H. Crouse, AIA, LEED AP, Treasurer & Immediate Past Chair – Saunders+Crouse Architects (Virginia Beach)

Crouse was a founding principal of CMSS Architects, PC in 1982 before merging the firm in 2010 with another firm. In 2013, John formed a new architectural and urban planning firm, Saunders+Crouse Architects. His expertise includes urban planning, historic adaptations and renovations, urban housing communities, and mixed use developments. In 1999, he led the firm in the design and planning for the revitalization of Diggs Town, which won a National AIA Urban Planning award and an award from the National Endowment for the Arts. He designed three new embassy compounds for the Department of State in Bulgaria, Armenia, and the Ivory Coast, of which the Bulgarian compound is the first LEED certified US embassy.

Affiliations:

  • AIA Hampton Roads – Past President and Board member
  • Virginia Society AIA – Past Board member
  • Virginia Tech College of Architecture and Urban Studies – past Advisory Board member
  • Hampton Roads Association for Commercial Real Estate (HRACRE)
  • Assistant Chair of the ULI Virginia
  • Treasurer of ULI Virginia

Patteson (Pat) Branch III, Trustee– Virginia Climate Control (Richmond)

Branch is President of Virginia Climate, Richmond, VA.  Prior to founding Three Oak Consulting, he served as the Chief Operating / Financial Officer and Director of Marketing for Velocity Micro, a Richmond, VA-based computer manufacturing company.  Branch earned his Master of Business Administration from The College of William and Mary, with a focus in entrepreneurship and marketing, and a Bachelor of Arts in Managerial Economics and English from Hampden-Sydney College.  He is a veteran project manager and chief operations officer, with expertise in rapidly deploying solutions to cut costs, enhance quality and increase profitability for companies in complex industries and of varying size. He draws on a vast experience working with companies at different stages of growth to help create and streamline corporate vision, gain a competitive edge in the market and lead multiple departments to reach a common goal.

Sally Brown, Trustee – Community Volunteer (Richmond)

Brown received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Interior Design from Virginia Commonwealth University and holds a Master’s degree in Architecture and Design Criticism from the Parsons School of Design. In addition to practicing Interior Design in Richmond and other locales, Brown has taught at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Longwood University, John Tyler Community College, the Hand Workshop, and St. Catherine’s School. She is a widely published author, having contributed to Virginia Living, Architectural Record, and the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and has served as guest curator, invited reviewer, and community leader throughout Richmond and beyond.

Affiliations:

  • Shimer College, Chicago, Illinois – Chair, Board of Trustees
  • Mayor’s Advisory Committee for Shockoe Slip, Shockoe Bottom, etc. – Member
  • 17th Street Farmers’ Market – Past Chair and Member, Advisory Council
  • Community Advisory Committee for VCU – Member
  • Commission for Architectural Review, City of Richmond – Past Appointed Commissioner
  • Urban Design Committee, City of Richmond – Member
  • Branch Board of Directors – Past Chair
  • Reimagining Monument Avenue Collective – Member

Walter M. Dotts, III, Trustee – Old House Authority (Richmond)                  

A native of Richmond, Dotts graduated from St. Christopher’s School and received his AB from Brown University.  His career efforts have focused on historic preservation, traditional building techniques, and the statistical analysis of group behavior.  Dotts effected the restoration of several mid-18th century and early 19th buildings, experience that led to his becoming an advisor to realtors and property owners on preservation priorities.  He co-founded Old House Authority, a company providing professional advice on the rehabilitation and conservation of old and historic buildings and materials. His unique approach to the study of group behavior has led to a proprietary method of analysis applied to the equity markets.

Affiliations:

  • James Branch Cabell Library Associates, VCU – President, Board member
  • Elmwood Fund – President, Board Member
  • Antiquarian Society – Board Member
  • Battleworks Dance Co. – Board Member 2007-2009
  • Richmond Animal Welfare Foundation, Richmond, VA – Founder and President 2002-2008
  • Richmond Clean City Commission, Richmond, VA – Board Member, President 1998-2002
  • Brown University Alumni Association, Admissions Interviewer
  • George Mason Memorial Society of Gunston Hall, Lorton, VA – Founder and President 1986-1994

Penelope C. Fletcher, Executive Director and Trustee

A graduate of The College of William & Mary with a BA in Art History, Fletcher’s career has focused in the not-for-profit arena.  She received certification from the Getty Leadership Institute for Museum Management.  Fletcher currently serves as Executive Director of The Branch Museum of Architecture and Design.  She has consulted regionally on non-profit management, fund development, and grant writing.  She previously served as Executive Director of the Lupus Foundation of America, DC/MD/VA; and as Deputy Director, Chief Operating Officer, and Museum Director for the John Paul II Cultural Center (DC); Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of the National Children’s Museum (DC).

Affiliations:

  • Center for Nonprofit Advancement certification
    • CEO Leadership Series
    • Strategic Legal Thinking for Nonprofit Executives
  • Reimagining Monument Avenue Collective
  • Lupus Foundation of America (National LFA – Washington, DC) – Board Member and founder and past chair of CEO Council for Regional CEOs
  • Prestwould Condominium Association, (RVA) Board Member & Past President
  • Community Health Charities – National Capital Area, Past Board Member, Vice Treasurer
  • Community Health Charities – National – Board Member
  • Tri Delta National Fraternity – National Vice President / Finance; National Alumnae Vice President; Outstanding Alumna Award; National Foundation – Board Member

Samuel. W. Daniel, Daniel & Company, Inc.

Daniel has been involved in the construction industry for 42 years, growing up in the family’s general contracting business and developing the full range of skills, to successfully operate a general contracting business which led to establishing Daniel & Company in 1996. A full-service general contracting and construction management firm, Daniel has developed a specialized niche for distinguished projects of historical significance, as well as, executing new construction, renovations and additions, and complex phased projects such as museums, instructional and religious facilities for both the public and private sectors. Daniel received a BS from Virginia Tech and an MBA from the College of William and Mary. Career

Affiliations:

  • Associated General Contractors, Richmond District – President, Chair – Carpentry Apprenticeship Committee
  • Construction Specifications Institute, Richmond Chapter, Treasurer, Scholarship Committee, Chair
  • Henricus Foundation – Board of Directors
  • Sargeant Reynolds Community College – Department of Architecture & Engineering Technology Advisory Board
  • Gubernatorial Appointments
    • Citizens Advisory Council for Furnishing and Interpreting Virginia’s Executive Mansion – CAC-Chair
    • Design Build/Construction Management Review Board – Member
  • Virginia Capitol Foundation – Board of Directors
  • Virginia Center for Architecture, Trustee
  • The Branch Museum of Architecture and Design, Trustee, Chair – Advisory Council
  • Virginia Council of CEO’s
  • Monument Avenue Preservation Society—MAPS – Board of Directors, Treasurer
  • Reimagining Monument Avenue Collective

Advisory Council

Samuel W. Daniel, Chair

Maurice Beane

Jack Berry

Robert A. Boynton, FAIA

Laura Cameron

Stephen A. (Kip) Caudle

John A. Crouse

Stephen (Steve) Coor, Hon. AIAVA

John Crouse, AIA

Penelope C. Fletcher

Meril Gerstenmaier

Kathleen S. Kilpatrick

Jerome Legions

Thomas A. Lisk, Esq.

Calder Loth

Jacquelyn Pogue

Susan Reed, AIA, NCARB

Joseph H. Seipel

Edwin Slipek

Julie Weissend

Dale Wheary

Joseph F. Yates

Bucci Zeugner

Some images on our website generously provided by Sarah Catherine at S Catherine photography

CZC Compliance is documented here: Website-Calendar-Events-2020