The International Tennis Hall of Fame's Museum Director Doug Stark has been named the 2016 Schroeder Award recipient by the International Sports Heritage Association (ISHA). Stark was presented the award at ISHA’s annual conference, which is being held at Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame in Calgary.
Presented periodically, the W.R. “Bill” Schroeder Distinguished Service Award is the highest honor presented by the International Sports Heritage Association and is given to individuals for meritorious service of lasting nature in the sports heritage industry and their communities.
“Doug Stark’s service to sports heritage is extraordinary and worthy of our highest honor,” said ISHA President Marjorie Snyder. “Whether at the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, the USGA Museum or in his current role at the International Tennis Hall of Fame, Doug’s commitment to our industry has never wavered. We are honored to name Doug as this year's winner."
Stark oversees the day-to-day operation at the International Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport, R.I. Previously, he has been part of the museum team at the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mass., the United States Golf Association Museum in Far Hills, N.J. At all three institutions, he has been a part of capital projects that have re-conceptualized and rebuilt three new sports museums.
At the International Tennis Hall of Fame, he recently directed a $3 million renovation and complete redesign of the venue while incorporating state-of-the-art exhibits. Additionally, he successfully directed the International Tennis Hall of Fame’s pursuit of accreditation by the American Alliance of Museums (AAM), thereby making it the first sports hall of fame to earn accreditation.
His wealth of experience has included strategic thinking and new facility planning; exhibit, program, and outreach development and execution; financial management, community and board engagement; collections care; branding and messaging; and product development. He has helped make sports history more engaging, relevant, and accessible to a wider, diverse and worldwide audience.
Stark is also an accomplished author of sports heritage-related publications. He is the author of The SPHAS: The Life and Times of Basketball’s Greatest Jewish Team published by Temple University Press in 2011. He is the co-author of Tennis and the Newport Casino released by Arcadia Publishing in 2011 and he also co-authored a children’s book, Shikey Gotthoffer, published by Maine Authors Publishing in September of 2015. His latest, Wartime Basketball: The Emergence of a National Sport during World War II was published by the University of Nebraska Press in 2016. He is currently working on two additional books – one on the integration of professional basketball, and the second on editing oral histories of Jewish Basketball Players.
Stark is a New England Museum Association board member where he serves as the group’s first vice president. He is also an adjunct professor in the Museum Studies program at Harvard University. Additionally, he has implemented programing at the Tennis Hall of Fame that caters to a wide range of visitors, including an architectural symposium that has grown into an annual sold-out community event.
In May, 2015, Stark gave a tour of the newly renovated International Tennis Hall of Fame to Hall of Famer Stan Smith.
The International Sports Heritage Association (ISHA) is a non-profit membership organization incorporated in 1971 to assist sports museums and halls of fame to develop, operate and promote their facilities. ISHA includes more than 130 members from countries such as China, New Zealand, Switzerland, Singapore, Australia, Canada, Qatar and the United States. ISHA’s mission is to educate, promote and support organizations and individuals engaged in the celebration of sports heritage.