New staff join AHF team

Alabama Humanities Foundation welcomes four new members to its staff in Programs, Development and Grants.

As AHF makes this important transition, Executive Director Armand DeKeyser noted that it has already been a smooth one. “We are fortunate to have such high caliber individuals stepping into the roles that are so critical to our success. We welcome them aboard and look forward to having them help move AHF forward.”

New staff, their positions and background are:

Programs Director Melanie Bouyer is a community-minded professional who has worked in diverse settings to assist organizations to expand their initiatives to meet the communities’ growing needs.

Melanie has significant experience in educating and guiding nonprofit and government organizations, including service for a term as Mayor of Lipscomb. Melanie previously worked for the Jefferson County School System as a special education teacher at Gardendale and Clay-Chalkville High schools.

An alumna of the University of Montevallo, Melanie has also earned post-graduate degrees from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and a Juris Doctor degree from Miles Law School.

Programs Coordinator Jerald Crook hails from Bay Minette, the county seat of Baldwin County. He attended Auburn University, where he graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in History and a minor in Sustainability.

He began his professional career working in public and academic libraries before joining the Alabama Bicentennial Commission staff as community relations specialist. There he served as liaison between the commission and local organizations and bicentennial committees.

Jerald is an avid arts and humanities enthusiast and community development advocate who enjoys finding ways to leverage his skills and experiences to help realize AHF’s goals, especially growth of Alabama History Day.

Development Director Marcy Miller brings to AHF over 20 years of professional experience spanning profit and not for profit industries. With a diverse background in resource development and marketing, Marcy has developed strategy and processes to exceed year-to-year fundraising goals and enhance constituent relationships.

Marcy has been a pioneer in developing advanced technology-based marketing projects and helped develop and taught digital marketing courses for UAB and Birmingham Southern.

She holds an MBA from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and earned a BA with a triple major (Finance, Marketing and General Business) from the University of Mississippi. In her spare time, Marcy enjoys gardening and spending time with her daughters, Chloe and Hannah.

Grants Director Graydon Rust is a longtime resident of Prattville, spending the past two years as Operations Specialist for the Alabama Bicentennial Commission. A graduate of Auburn University at Montgomery with a bachelor’s degree in history, he is completing a Master of Library and Information Studies degree at the University of Alabama.

At Alabama 200, Graydon managed the grant program, overseeing the disbursement of more than 150 grants and $500,000 to community organizations in 61 Alabama counties. He served as the webmaster and wrote more than 400 articles for Alabama NewsCenter’s, This Day in Alabama History. He served as project manager for Alabama Bicentennial PastPort, a reference guide to Alabama’s historical destinations, and as liaison to more than 300 sites featured in the book.

Previously, Graydon worked in the Research Room at the Alabama Department of Archives and History.

At AHF, he hopes to encourage community engagement with the humanities statewide while continuing its work of providing opportunities for lifelong learning and promoting Alabama’s cultural institutions.