|STRATFORD, VA, (July 24, 2015) – Dr. Paul C. Reber, 56, Executive Director of Stratford Hall since 2006, passed away Thursday evening at VCU Hospital in Richmond as a result of injuries he received while riding his bicycle near his home in Westmoreland County, Virginia. He had been an avid cyclist. Dr. Reber had 25 years of experience in museum management with an emphasis on history and historic house museums.
“On behalf of the entire Stratford Hall family, including Board members, staff, and supporters, we are all shocked at the loss,” said Custis Glover, President of the Robert E. Lee Memorial Association, which owns and operates Stratford Hall. “Paul has had a great impact on all of us, and Stratford has benefitted from his leadership and guidance, his energy, love of history and the Lees, his involvement in his community and the Northern Neck. He was deeply committed to ensuring Stratford’s well being, day in and day out,” said Glover.
Under his leadership as Executive Director of Stratford Hall, he oversaw The Great House restoration, the innovative (re)discover Stratford and n-compass tours, reversing the downward trend of visitation, and led Stratford’s $17 million comprehensive campaign.
Prior to assuming his responsibilities at Stratford Hall, Dr. Reber was an Adjunct Professor of History at the University of North Carolina – Greensboro, President of Old Salem Inc. in Winston-Salem, NC, and Executive Director of Decatur House, a National Trust Historic Site in Washington, D.C., Director of Development at Mount Vernon, and as Director of the White House Endowment Fund.
During his tenure at the National Trust, Dr. Reber also served as the Associate Campaign Director for Historic Sites, where he managed seven site capital campaigns totaling $6 million. As Director of the White House Endowment Fund he managed a $25 million campaign to create an endowment for the White House public rooms.
He was deeply committed to the educational purpose of Great Camp Sagamore, a National Historic Landmark, in his beloved Adirondacks, serving on the Board from 2001 to 2008; as President from 2006 to 2008; he led with energy and foresight. His family has deep roots in the village of Raquette Lake, New York, where they vacationed for many years.
Dr. Reber graduated with a B.A. from Gettysburg College, an M.A. from George Mason University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Maryland, College Park. He previously served as President of the Board of the Sagamore Institute of the Adirondacks in Raquette Lake, NY, and was formerly on the board of the Association for the Preservation of Historic Congressional Cemetery in Washington, DC. He was currently serving on the board of the Virginia Tourism Corporation as Vice Chairman, and as President of the Northern Neck Tourism Commission.
He is survived by his wife, Shannon Reber, his son, Alex, his father, Richard, and was preceded in death by his mother, Joanne.
A memorial service is being planned for the Fall.
The family has requested that memorials can be made to Stratford Hall, the Kinsale Foundation, Great Camp Sagamore, or the Pennsylvania German Society. Cards and letters may be mailed to: PO Box 277, Kinsale, Virginia, 22488.