Keith HardisonDirector, State Historic Sites
Keith Hardison is a native of Nashville, Tenn., with family ties in North Carolina that date back almost 300 years. For the last 28 years, he has served museums, historic sites and government historical agencies throughout the South.
Hardison served as executive director of Beauvoir, The Jefferson Davis Home, from 1986 to 1999, where he funded and constructed the Jefferson Davis Presidential Library and Museum. In 1999 and 2000, he was director of education, interpretation and visitor services for Pamplin Historical Park in Virginia, where he assisted with the opening of the National Museum of the Civil War Soldier. From 2000 to 2006, he was an administrator with the Louisiana State Museum, supervising development and operation of its award-winning, $23 million Baton Rouge branch.
In 2006, he came to Natural and Cultural Resources, where he works to preserve, develop and operate of a statewide system of 24 historic sites.
Hardison holds B.A. in history from David Lipscomb University and a M.A. in museum science from Texas Tech University.
Hardison is a former member of the Mississippi Civil War Battlefields Commission and is active in a number of professional and historical organizations including the American Association for State and Local History, the North Carolina Museums Council, and the North Carolina Historical Society. He currently co-chairs the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources Civil War 150 Committee. He is a popular lecturer on Civil War, general history, museum and heritage tourism-related topics.