VMI Museum Director Honored by Governor
Virginia Gov. Robert McDonnell congratulates Col. Keith Gibson after presenting him with the Governor's Star Award. -- Michaele White photo courtesy of the Office of the Governor.
LEXINGTON, Va., July 2, 2012 – Col. Keith Gibson ’77, executive director of Virginia Military Institute museum system, received a Governor’s Star Award today in a ceremony at the executive mansion. The award recognizes outstanding state employees.
Gibson began his career as a cadet assistant in the VMI Museum in 1976 and now manages the operations and development of the VMI Museum and the Stonewall Jackson House in Lexington, as well as the New Market Battlefield and Virginia Museum of the Civil War in New Market.
He is honored for overseeing the refurbishment of the VMI museum and updating the image of the New Market museum. He was instrumental in an effort last year that brought the Stonewall Jackson House into the VMI museum system, which preserved both the historic house and an extensive community volunteer program. And, as VMI’s architectural preservation officer, Gibson developed a comprehensive preservation plan and consults with architectural and engineering firms on the design, construction, and renovation of structures across the VMI post, a registered National Historic District.
An accomplished speaker and writer, Gibson speaks to every entering class of new cadets before they travel to the New Market Battlefield and the National D-Day Memorial in Bedford, Va., making history fascinating and relevant to the cadets with his insight and personal stories.
“Keith Gibson reflects the pride and achievement of the Virginia Military Institute and is truly an ambassador for the institution,” said VMI superintendent Gen. J.H. Binford Peay III ’62. As a speaker he is in constant demand from alumni chapters, Civil War round-table groups, and historical groups across the country.
Gibson has worked as a consultant on historical documentary films, made for television films and feature films including Field of Lost Shoes (winner of two PBS Emmy awards), Gods and Generals, Sommersby, and Gettysburg. In addition to numerous book reviews and articles on the Civil War era and VMI, Gibson is author or co-author of several books, including Virginia Military Institute (a pictorial history); Moses Ezekiel: Civil War Soldier, Renowned Sculptor; and The VMI Spirit: A Portrait of VMI.