Chair: Christine Brown
Treasurer: Nicole Spence
Secretary: Cathy Salustri
Curator: Rob Burkhart
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About Christine (Chairperson): Christine has lived in Gulfport for almost 30 years. Her husband is a direct descendent of the founding family of Gulfport. For many of those years she has been immersed in the history of Gulfport as a member of Gulfport Historical Society’s board of directors and recently made the transition from treasurer to chairperson. Christine is excited to be taking the Society in a new direction.
After graduating from Eckerd College with a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics she went on to receive her Master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Florida. Christine began teaching high school mathematics in 1994 and has been teaching in Gulfport at Boca Ciega High School for almost 20 years. In addition to her work with the Gulfport Historical Society, Christine has served on many boards and committees for the city of Gulfport and currently serves on Gulfport city council as the Ward Two representative.
Born in Hawaii into a military family, moving often was a matter of course. Settling in Gulfport, starting a family, and planting roots for her daughter in Gulfport has given her a place to call home and she calls Gulfport her “adopted home town”. Gulfport is a small town but a strong community and because of this, Christine is happy that the citizens Gulfport are enthusiastic and supportive of the good works of the Gulfport Historical Society.
About Cathy (Secretary): When she was seven, Cathy’s parents moved to Florida from New York and decided to bring her along. With the exception of college, Cathy has lived in Pinellas County ever since. She grew up in Clearwater and first moved to Gulfport in 2003. Since that time, she has also lived in St. Petersburg and on St. Pete Beach, but now lives in the northeast section of Gulfport. She worked for the local paper for 12 years, in which time she developed a deep attachment to Gulfport’s eclectic community. Currently, she is the arts & entertainment editor for Creative Loafing Tampa.
In 2011, Cathy logged almost 5,000 miles in a camper as she retraced driving tours from the Works Progress Administration’s Federal One tour guide about Florida, Guide to the Southernmost State, in search of Florida’s overlooked culture, history and destinations. Her book about those travels, Backroads of Paradise, came out in October 2016 and was featured in the New York Times in January 2017.. She is currently at work on a second book about life in Gulfport. Her areas of research include vintage Florida roadside attractions, the WPA’s work in Florida, and Gulfport. She has a master’s of liberal arts with a focus in Florida Studies from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg, where she studied Florida history and culture under Drs. Gary Mormino and Ray Arsenault. She also speaks about her research, the WPA work in Florida, historic driving tours, and vintage roadside attractions, across the state.
About Nicole (Treasurer): Nicole has a B.A. in Art History from Emory University. She lives in Gulfport with her husband and daughter and their dog, Dougal, who sits at the table for dinner and has a penchant for sweaters.
Other board members include Rob Burkhart, Susan Ray, Susan Horrigan, Cathy Tyson Marsh, Bob Bates, Mary Hanrahan and Karean Dorn. We’ll have their bios and photos here soon.