Cori Wegener (KORR-ee WEGG-uh-nur) has an unusual background: not only does she have an art history degree from the University of Kansas, she's a (now-retired) Major in the U.S. Army Reserve. She was called to active duty following the 2003 looting of the Iraq National Museum and worked to preserve and recover cultural artifacts from the region...a mission she continued following the 2010 Haiti earthquake. She is now a Preservation Specialist for Cultural Heritage at the Smithsonian Institution, working with museum staff in countries dealing with military and terrorist conflict and the destruction of cultural heritage. KPR's Laura Lorson asked Wegener about the challenges art historians face in deciding how to preserve cultural treasures in an active war zone.
Cori Wegener is this year's recipient of the Franklin D. Murphy Distinguished Alumni Award at the University of Kansas. Her lecture "From Berlin to Baghdad: When Art Historians Go to War" takes place tomorrow (THUR) night from 5:30 to 6:30 at the Spencer Museum of Art auditorium. Admission is free.