Monday, July 7, 2014

Larry Spasic, Thompson Gem

[Full disclosure: Mr. Spasic was my homeroom teacher at Thompson Intermediate 1982/83 & 83/84 school years. I was never lucky enough to get him for history, but Mrs. Thomas (my Texas History teacher in 7th) and Mr. Flores (U.S. History in 8th) were pretty awesome.]

Mr. Spasic was  halfway through his tenure at Thompson when he spearheaded a scholarship fund for Dobie/Thompson graduates.

In 1988 he won the DAR Texas History Teacher of the Year award and a year later joined the staff at the San Jacinto Museum where he eventually became President and CEO

From The Rotary Club of Houston:

Mr. Spasic was presented the Texas History Teacher of the Year award by the Daughters of the Republic of Texas on May 14, 1988.  He was the recipient of an Honorary Life Membership by the National Congress of Parents and Teachers through the Texas PTA.  He was also commended by the Board of Trustees of the Pasadena Independent School District for achievements as outstanding Texas History Teacher.

• Mr. Spasic joined the Museum staff as Curator of Education in July of 1989 after teaching Texas history for 10 years in the public school system.  After joining the museums staff, he immediately began working with a team of historians in researching and editing the script of Texas Forever!! and was one of the museum staff to act as a liaison to the W.S. Bellows Construction Company, which built the Jesse H. Jones Theatre for Texas Studies.  He then selected the automated ticketing and reservation system used for Texas Forever!!  Shortly thereafter he worked with staff members and curriculum writers from the Deer Park Independent School District to complete a comprehensive teacher’s curriculum guide.  An educator packet soon followed with a complete reorganization of site visits by schools and the starting of a reservation system.

• By August of 1993 Mr. Spasic accepted the position of Assistant Director at the San Jacinto Museum, reporting to the Director of the Museum in all aspects of museum operations.  In working with Fixtures International, he oversaw a major redesign of the museum store.  With the renovation of the observation floor of the museum he researched and worked on the design of the didactic panels and signage now in place.

• On February 16, 2000 The Chairman of the San Jacinto Board of Trustees asked Mr. Spasic to be acting Executive Director until the newly created position of President/CEO was filled.  During this time he led the Herzstein cataloging staff to the completion of the entire artifact, library and archive collections of the museum as Project Manager.

• On February 20, 2001, Mr. Spasic became the Chief Operations Officer in charge of the staff and all aspects of the day-to-day operations of the San Jacinto Museum of History.  To date, he continues to serve in that capacity.

• In September, 2004, Mr. Spasic’s appointment to the position of Interim President was unanimously approved by the Board of Trustees.

• On August 22, 2006, the Board of Trustees unanimously elected Mr. Spasic President of the San Jacinto Museum of History.        

Last fall the Houston Chronicle ran a piece on the museum's impressive plans for expansion, which featured a couple of photos of Mr. S. (I cannot call him Larry) these days.

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