Two North Central College employees will be inducted to the Naperville Heritage Society's Heritage Hall of Honor Sunday, Aug. 1, at Naper Settlement. The yearly recognition honors people and organizations that have made significant contributions to preserving the history of Naperville.
Ann Durkin Keating, Dr. C. Frederick Toenniges Professor of History, will be recognized for her historical and academic contributions. Mary Kay Hyett, office manager, Office of Community Development, will be honored for her volunteerism.
Keating helped Naper Settlement's education department develop an Underground Railroad program for schoolchildren and gave them input on other exhibits. Keating, a co-editor of "The Encyclopedia of Chicago" and author of four books, also sends North Central College students to Naper Settlement to do research and serve as interns. Established by the Naperville Heritage Society, Naper Settlement is a 12-acre historic museum village that incorporates recreational, cultural and educational programs depicting the life and customs from Naperville's founding in 1831 to the 20th century.
Keating serves as the principal historian for a four-year Teaching American History federal grant that brings together museums, K-12 schools and higher education to teach teachers how to teach history. The program benefits a consortium of local school districts, including Indian Prairie Unit District 204, Naperville Unit District 203, Aurora school districts 129 and 131, and Wheaton Warrenville Unit District 200. Keating is in charge of the content of the grant program, and some 45 teachers have participated.
Naper Settlement staff member Donna Sack says, "Ann is a very special historian in that she really understands the connection between the K-12 community, the higher education community and the museum community. I think teachers in our program have come to understand history in a different way than when they started."
Hyett, a Naperville resident, and her family have been involved for many years with the heritage society. They have volunteered at Naper Settlement's Christmas Memories, the Heritage Ball and Antiques Show. She also worked with the heritage society's development office in the 1990s, helping to raise funds to build the Pre-Emption House Visitor Center.
Other inductees include Jim Moser, Robert Furnoff and USG Corporation.