Chris Timm, who served as interim executive director of Maine Maritime Museum for the past year, is taking on the job permanently.


Timm had worked as the museum’s chief curator for five years and for the museum since 2016.

“One of the things that really excites me is finding ways to bring Maine’s maritime history into the present,” said Timm, citing “Maine’s influential role in global politics and trade” and the resonance of that history in modern times. 

“We want our visitors to be able to contextualize the present and think about how things that happened 12 months ago or 120 years ago really determine and affect our experiences today and how we can learn from them,” he said. 

As an example, he cited the museum’s documentation of Maine’s role in the transatlantic slave trade.

“What’s great is that he will continue the work he’s already started doing, so there’s an important continuity there,” said Amanda Pleau, the museum’s marketing and communications manager. 


“We’re looking at innovating the exhibits we offer – for example, with the Maine artists and contemporary art exhibits we introduced this summer,” Pleau said. “It’s exciting to be exploring what is possible for us.” 

Museum chairperson Lincoln Paine said the board was impressed by Timm’s work as interim director and prior to that as chief curator.

“He really shone in terms of his ability to work collaboratively with the board of directors at a very trying time,” Paine said. “He’s very thoughtful and deliberate, and has good institutional knowledge.” 

During his time in curation, Paine said, Timm worked with people who had served collectively for around 80 years, which allowed him to build his understanding of the museum’s history. 

Timm, whose background is in art history, noted the uniquely important role museums must play in education and said he looks forward to exploring ways to offer more programming to local schools.

“We have so many resources to draw on,” he said. “Here we have 20,000 artifacts in our collection.”  

Timm said that while the last couple years have been challenging, the community has continued to support the museum. 

“Our supporters, donors and members really rallied around us through the pandemic,” Timm said. “Our donors chipped in, and we were able to ride it out and come up with ways of digitizing our collection.” 

“He really understands that accessibility to the museum comes in a variety of forms,” Paine said. “He understands that it needs to not only be accessible to visitors but also to scholars who are interested in reinterpreting Maine’s maritime history.”

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