Speaker Profiles

Museum Ambassadors

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Museum Ambassadors

Mary Pat Higgins, Museum President and CEO
As President and CEO of the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum, Mary Pat Higgins leads the Museum in its mission to teach the history of the Holocaust and advance human rights to combat prejudice, hatred and indifference.

Under Mary Pat’s leadership, the Museum underwent a significant transition as it moved from its transitional location to a new, permanent home, which opened to the public on September 18, 2019. The new state-of-the-art facility accommodates an expanded core exhibit and a larger volume of visitors. Additionally, it has enabled the Museum to grow its educational programs. The new permanent exhibition includes a broadened perspective, with installations, artifacts, multimedia, and narratives focused on human and civil rights, pluralism and diversity, and other genocides, in addition to the history of the Holocaust.

Mary Pat has been a longtime advocate for children and educational initiatives. Prior to her role at the Museum, Mary Pat served as Associate Head and Chief Financial Officer at The Hockaday School in Dallas. She oversaw the annual operating budget, numerous school departments, investment management for a $125 million endowment and substantial construction and renovation activities.

Outside of the Museum, Mary Pat is active in the greater non-profit community of Dallas and has served on the boards of Oak Hill Academy, Preston Hollow Presbyterian School, Planned Parenthood of North Texas, KERA, the Dallas Women’s Foundation, and the President’s Visiting Council of Austin College.  She currently serves on the board of The Ursuline Academy, VisitDallas, Co-chairing the Cultural Tourism Committee, and North Dallas Bank & Trust.  She earned a bachelor's degree in Accounting from The University of Texas at Austin, is a Certified Public Accountant, and is a graduate of Southern Methodist University’s Cox School of Business Executive MBA Program. Mary Pat and her husband, Lance, have lived in Dallas since 1989, and they have two grown sons.

Sara Abosch-Jacobson, PhD
Dr. Sara Abosch-Jacobson is the Barbara Rabin Chief Education Officer for the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum. An experienced educator, she has researched, taught and written on Jewish culture and history. She holds a PhD in modern European and Jewish history, an MA in modern British and Jewish history, and an MA in Political Science with a concentration in Civil/Military Relations.  At the Museum, she is responsible for all content-related matters.  She regularly speaks on the Holocaust, topics in Jewish history and culture, and the history covered in the Museum’s core and special exhibitions.

Charlotte Decoster, PhD
Charlotte Decoster, PhD is the Ackerman Family Director of Education for the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum. An experienced educator, she has researched, taught, and written on Holocaust history. She holds a PhD in History from the University of North Texas. She regularly speaks on the Holocaust, children and child rescue during the Holocaust, and in Nazi Germany. She has travelled throughout the U.S. to give talks on Anne Frank and child rescue during the Holocaust.

Felicia Williamson, Museum Archivist / Special Collections
Felicia J. Williamson, MLIS, CA, is Director of the Helen and Frank Risch Family Library & Archives at the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum.  She holds an MLIS with an archives focus from LSU and a BA in history, German, and European Studies from the University of Arkansas.  Williamson is a certified archivist, a member of the Society of Southwest Archivists, and of the Society of American Archivists.  At the Museum, she is working to expand, strengthen, and increase access to the important collection of rare books, artifacts, and oral history testimonies.

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