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The Power of the Ballot

Wanda Draper

Wanda Draper, Executive Director of the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African-American History and Culture reminds us of the importance of voting. She implores us that this "is not a time to be silenced by fear or deadly apathy."


A native of Baltimore, Wanda Queen Draper graduated from the University of Maryland School of Journalism. She also attended Johns Hopkins University Graduate School of Contemporary Studies and the University of Maryland School of Law. 

She was appointed Executive Director of the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture on September 28, 2016. She came to the Museum from WBAL-TV of the Hearst Corporation in a number of capacities including Director of Programming and Public Affairs. She began her career with Hearst Newspapers as a reporter for the Baltimore News American. She also worked at WJZ-TV and Maryland Public Television. She spent five years as Director of Community Affairs and Visitor Services at the National Aquarium in Baltimore, managing admissions, security, catered events, retail sales and community affairs. She has extensive management training at the Disney Institute, the American Association of Zoos and Aquariums and the National Association of Broadcasters. Aside from extensive broadcast communications and management experience, she has a giving resume that parallels her career.

Wanda Draper has a proven dedication to uplifting and empowering communities in need. Her view of community service as a social responsibility has led her to take on hunger, homeless, and education amongst many other worthy causes. The highlight of her community service was serving on the founding board of the Reginald Lewis Museum from 1999 to 2008. During that time $38 million was raised to build the Museum and $2 million to install the permanent collection. She was honored to return as Executive Director in 2016 and looks forward to the many contributions that the Museum will make toward enriching the lives of Baltimoreans, Marylanders, and visitors of all ages.

Wanda is married to Dr. Robert Draper. They have two children and three grandchildren.