100 Holomoana St
Elissa Lines-Pacific Aviation Museum, Executive Director, Development
A 1975 graduate of Connecticut College majoring in Urban Affairs, Elissa Lines began her career in the non-profit sector, specializing in program development, strategic planning, and creative solutions to the challenge of securing economic self-sufficiency at a time when federal community and model cities support was evaporating. Leadership in early community action agency programming and development provided the foundation needed to answer the challenge posed by an emerging service need – providing blind and print impaired individuals with access to all things printed. Elissa launched the first Radio Reading Service for the Blind in Rochester New York, spearheading a unique partnership with Eastman Kodak Company and within a few years, was recruited to build a similar service in Tucson, Arizona. Passage of the American’s with Disabilities Act provided a unique opportunity to explore the creation of a “for profit” project designed to support the “non- profit” radio reading service; with the support of a team of volunteers, sighted and visually impaired, and a work force resourced through government programming, a document conversion and training initiative was develop, producing and marketing braille versions of menus, hotel directories, safety manuals and other publicly available information. The project, profitable after one year, received the Maricopa County Community College Award for Innovation.
After 12 years in the Radio Reading Service industry, Elissa got involved with aviation museums, launching the first membership and development program at the Pima Air & Space Museum in Tucson Arizona. Building major community and state support, Elissa was instrumental in opening the Challenger Learning Centers for Space Science Education in Tucson, followed by the opening of a second center in Phoenix. She went on to lead development and marketing efforts at the Museum of Flight in Seattle, helping to expand community, corporate and foundation support for several major expansion efforts.
Before coming to Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor, Elissa served as the Vice President for Donor and Business Relations for EAA, the Experimental Aircraft Association, in Oshkosh Wisconsin. She held responsibility for philanthropy, advertising, exhibitor revenue, and sponsorship, a combined $14 million annual revenue stream. Key to the success achieved in Oshkosh was the initiation of an approach called Relationship Management, building strategic partnerships that advanced mutually supportive directions. Revenue doubled under her leadership and a signature fund raising event that grew national recognition was launched. The Gathering of Eagles became a $2.5 million annual event designed to support youth education. Elissa achieved her private pilot’s license while working for the EAA.
Elissa joined the Pacific Aviation Museum team in 2014 to assist the organization in completing the master plan. Calling upon a vast network of aviation and history enthusiasts, and championing the elements of the mission that address the impact of the attack on Pearl Harbor and the significance of the site on which the museum has been developed (the grounds, the buildings, the surroundings and adjacent runway), the vision will engage a broad spectrum of national supporters (individuals, corporate, foundation) in remembering and honoring the past in ways that inspire and empower the future.