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  • Member Profile: Collier Neeley

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    Collier Neeley has been Executive Director of the Landmarks Foundation of Montgomery for one year, but he’s been familiar with the organization all his life, as grandson of beloved Montgomery historian Mary Ann Neeley, who was also Director of Landmarks at one time.
    What is the mission of Landmarks Foundation? Our mission is to preserve, interpret and present Central Alabama’s history, architecture and culture. We use several tools including Old Alabama Town, educational programing and community preservation programing to draw attention to Montgomery’s history.
    What first got you interested in history? My grandmother was very influential and made sure my cousins, my sister and I were well-rounded and had a love for travel, learning and family. Part of that was visiting historic places. From there, she encouraged us to read, and I fell in love with history, studying it, teaching it and showing folks how important it is that we use the lessons of the past to inform our present and plan for the future. Over time, that interest shifted to historic preservation and seeing the potential to build an exciting and vibrant community, while embracing the past and the future simultaneously, by using old buildings for new uses.
    What all does your job entail? Somebody once called me the Chief Of Everything. Being the Executive Director of a small nonprofit means you wear a lot of hats. In the same week, I’ve picked up limbs from a storm the night before, washed a building in Old Alabama Town, met with donors and potential developers, made budget adjustments in response to the pandemic and met with a ladies’ group in town to discuss the importance of preservation and local history.
    What’s your favorite aspect of your job? I like the relationship building, talking with people around town, making connections and finding commonality between people and groups to help everyone achieve their goals. Montgomery can be a funny place sometimes, but the last few years, it seems like everyone is really coming together around this city, and I’m so proud to be a part of that.
    There’s An App for That
    Landmarks just launched its augmented reality app, Xplore Old Alabama Town, available on the Apple and Android app stores. It’s free for anyone, but was developed to give schools remote and interactive experiences for K-12 students.
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