Dream Job

By: Matt Foss, assistant director on May 23rd, 2018

After five months, four interviews, three rounds of negotiations, two plane trips, and one incredible job offer, I decided to stay at the Woodson Art Museum.

Several months ago, I received word that the longtime historian and curator of the College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta was retiring. Long story short, my name was thrown into the ring and after several steps, I was offered the position to succeed him. Because I love football, was specifically trained to preserve and interpret a collection of football artifacts, and one of my own great-great grandfathers is a College Football Hall of Famer, it seemed like a no-brainer I would take the position. It was not that simple.

1898 University of Chicago football team. My great-great grandfather is in the front row, third from the left. Coach Amos Alonzo Stagg (one of the four major innovators of the game) is on the far right.

I love the Woodson Art Museum, my wife has a good job in the area, all of our family live in Wisconsin, and the Museum made a counter-offer, hoping I would stay. This of course led to the gut-wrenching decision of a lifetime. Not gut-wrenching because I chose to stay here, but because “football museum curator” jobs do not grow on trees. You can literally count them on one hand.

Although I turned down this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, I learned you can’t undervalue what you love and currently enjoy. The Woodson Art Museum is special. With an exceptional staff, great group of volunteers, forward-thinking Board of Directors, and stable of talented artists who are part of the Museum’s extended family, working at the Woodson is already a dream job.

However, couldn’t the Woodson arrange a loan of a Heisman Trophy or two for an exhibition? It is a bronze sculpture, after all . . .


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