What is FOCoS?

  • Free On-Site Consultation Services (FOCoS)
  • FOCoS provides advice and guidance to small or emerging museums using the resources and expertise found in established museums around the state. As a result of FOCoS, not only do museums receive valuable feedback on their programs and operations, but the museum community and Council are strengthened through the collaborative effort of professionals reaching out to share their knowledge of the field.

Changes to FOCoS:

  • Updated applications
  • Year-Round Applications Accepted
    • FOCoS projects that can be handled remotely via ZOOM or Google Meet Ups will be ongoing as consultants are available.
    • As large, in-person projects arise, we will plan accordingly as budget permits.
  • List of available consultants
    • If your project does not match with an existing consultant, we will do ort best to find a consultant that works for you and your institution.

Click here for the application. You may apply any time to the Vice President, Alex Olivares at

Commonly Asked FOCoS questions

What areas of consulting are offered?

  • Sites can obtain free consultations in a maximum of two of the following topic areas:
    • Collections Management
    • Administration of Facility
    • In-Person and Digital Educational Programming
    • Recruiting and Managing Volunteers
    • Marketing and Social Media
    • Community Engagement
    • Exhibit Design and Construction (in person consulting only)

Who can apply?

  • Any institution may apply. However, partiality will be given to those facilities with fewer financial resources (generally with an operating budget under $100,000).

Do I have to be an NCMC member to apply?

  • Individual or institutional membership in NCMC is not a requirement for applicants. While enlisting new members is an ongoing objective of NCMC's work, the overriding mission of FOCoS is to help small institutions, regardless of affiliation with NCMC.

Who do I contact?

  • FOCoS will be administered through NCMC's vice president working in cooperation with the chairs of Membership Development and Professional Development. If you are interested in serving as a consultant or would like to receive a visit from FOCoS consultants, please contact NCMC’s Vice President:

How do I apply?

  • Download an application, put together your supplemental information, and submit your documents to
  • Please note that applications can be created by staff or volunteers at a museum or site, but must be finalized, reviewed, and signed by the director or site representative of the applicant organization. The director or site representative is then the direct contact for all interactions involving the FOCoS program.

Download the FOCoS application here.

    Some of our FOCoS Consultants

    • Scott Warren, Director of the President James K. Polk State Historic Polk Site
      Administration, Partnerships, Program development, Pathways to Senior Leadership, Governance

    • Karl McKinnon, Assistant Director of the Schiele Museum
      Budgeting, Cost Accounting / Elimination Efficiency, board relations, and strategic planning

    • Alicyn Wiedrich, Curator of the Gaston County Museum of Art & History
      Community Engagement, Diversity & Inclusion, Public Art, Arts Engagement for all ages, Exhibit Design, Research, Accessibility

    • Ainsley Powell, Curator of Collections at City of Raleigh’s Historic Recourses and Museum Program
      Collections Management

    • Corrinne Midyette, Registrar of High Point Museum
      Collections Management

    • Alexander Brooks, Education Manager of Gaston County Museum
      Education, DEAI training

    • Christian Edwards
      Collections Management
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    Some Recent Recipient Institutions

    Could your institution be next?

    2019 – Iredell Museums

    2018 – The Museum of the Waxhaws

    2017 – The Milton Renaissance Foundation

    2017 – Scotland County Historic Properties Commission

    2016 – Swansboro Heritage Society

    2015 – Asheville History Center

    2012 – Korner’s Folly 

    2012 – Rockingham County Historical Society Museum and Archives

    2011 – Penderlea Homestead Museum

    2011 – St. Paul Museum / North Randolph Historical Society

    2010 – Orange County Historical Museum

    2010 – Robeson County History Museum

    2009 – Kannapolis History Associates

    2009 – Hamlet Historic Depot Museum 

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    The North Carolina Museums Council is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.
    PO Box 2603, Raleigh, NC 27602-2603
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