Suzanne Thomassen-Krauss, AS ’82M

"The UD-Winterthur Program in Art Conservation gave me the best of both worlds. There was the intensity of study on campus and the actual experience of working at the museum, where I could reflect on what I was striving for. One of my most memorable professors at the University was the late Don Heller. When he interviewed me for the art conservation program, he expressed such a realistic view. ‘You need to know, you can't save everything,' he said, ‘so spend your efforts wisely.' When I see how enthusiastically the visitors react to our work on the Star-Spangled Banner, I know we have spent our efforts well."
—Suzanne Thomassen-Krauss, AS '82M

A textile conservator at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of American History, Suzanne Thomassen-Krauss has spent the last seven years working to conserve the Star-Spangled Banner, the flag that inspired Francis Scott Key to write the words for what is now our national anthem. Her job has included creating a special textile conservation room and devising educational materials to go along with the conservation of the three-stories-high flag. The flag underwent a painstaking restoration from 1999 to 2007 and the restored flag will go on display when the National Museum of History reopens in Fall 2008.

published 1998 in UD Messenger