Michael Beattie awarded AMaGA Victoria Award for Excellence

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Michael Beattie has received The AMaGA Victoria Award for Excellence (Paid Staff) for his work with the Indigo Shire Council.

Michael received the award at the 2020 Victorian Museums and Galleries Awards, an online presentation held tonight by AMaGA Victoria, the peak body for 1,000+ museums and collecting organisations.

The night was hosted by Cal Wilson, Melbourne comedian and author, and included a special address by Danny Pearson MP, Minister for Creative Industries.

Michael was nominated for the award for his work with the Indigo Shire Council where he worked for thirteen years as coordinator of the Beechworth Historic Courthouse, as part of the Burke Museum and Historic Precinct team.

Michael has shown a passion for researching, recording and communicating the history of the court. He provided everyday research assistance to visitors, researchers and students as well as to other museums, documentary crews and academics.

He also showed constant dedication to interpreting the stories of the courthouse to hundreds of thousands of visitors, through leading walking tours, undertaking re-enactments of trials, managing education visits and communicating with visitors.

Michael has been, for more than a decade, the remaining conduit to the legacy of the original Friends of the Courthouse group, and ensured that the knowledge and passion is preserved and passed down.

The judges commended Michael’s innovative way of sharing the history of the Beechworth Historic Courthouse. They felt that “He really brought the history to life, in an animated engaging, and performative manner,” that made them want to visit for themselves.

They commended Michael’s diverse skills, dedication, and passion for research and photography as a true asset to Indigo Shire Council.

Minister for Creative Industries Danny Pearson said, “Our museums and galleries play a vital role in shaping Victoria’s cultural identity – they connect us with the past, tell our stories, fuel our imaginations and inspire us to dream for the future. They have also played an important role in getting us through the challenges of 2020, providing rich online experiences and working behind-the-scenes to welcome back visitors in a COVIDSafe way.”

“Congratulations to this year’s award winners – and to all the dedicated staff and volunteers who power our museums and galleries and make such an important contribution to our creative state.”

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