American Sign Museum names brewery founder executive director

The American Sign Museum selected a Cincinnati native and longtime craft brewery owner as its next executive director.

David Dupee is a graduate of Wyoming High School, located about 13 miles north of downtown Cincinnati. A lawyer by training, he has spent the past decade helping launch and scale mission-driven organizations.

Dupee co-founded Milwaukee-based Good City Brewing in 2016. Since its opening, the craft brewery has expanded to four locations. Good City won the title of Milwaukee Small Business of the Year in 2018 and earned recognition as a Future 50 Company a year later.

David Dupee

Along with Good City, Dupee started an investment crowdfunding platform devoted to democratizing access to capital for small businesses. In announcing the hiring, ASM also highlighted Dupee’s “active role” in advising the Wisconsin legislature on Assembly Bill 350, helping to create the first intrastate crowdfunding exemption passed by a state legislature.

Dupee assumed his new role on April 22.

“I’m excited to return to my hometown to help lead the ASM into exciting future growth that advances its mission to celebrate America’s rich sign heritage through preservation and education,” Dupee said.

Helping the Sign Museum continue to ‘shine’

Established in 1999, the American Sign Museum celebrates the art and history of commercial signs and sign making. The Camp Washington facility has grown into the largest public museum of its kind in the United States, featuring more than 100 years of American sign history inside its current 20,000-square-foot space.

ASM selected Dupee as part of a national search. Michael Mattingly, chair of the ASM board of directors, said the process included a review of “more than 100 talented candidates from around the country.”

“David has a proven track-record of leadership and is a great fit as the Museum works to expand its cultural impact on the local, regional and national communities,” Mattingly said.

In the coming weeks, ASM will finish a considerable expansion that will roughly double the size of the museum. The new area will include an extension of the “Main Street” exhibition as well as the addition of a theater space, a multi-use workshop, a catering kitchen and staff offices. (Read David Lyman’s piece on the upcoming ASM expansion).

Dupee said he “couldn’t be more excited to help lead the ASM through this next phase of its development.” The expansion will open sometime in July.

“Whether you want to call it nostalgia or something else, I believe these memories are essential to cultivating an overall sense of place that ultimately helps root us in our communities,” he added.

American Sign Museum

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