My name is Allan Rowe, and I am the new Historic Places Research Officer. Following the example set by my colleagues, I’m taking a moment to introduce myself.
I am originally from British Columbia, born in White Rock and raised in the beautiful Okanagan Valley. Halfway through my grade twelve year, I made the fateful decision to change my upcoming college major from computer information systems to history, and I haven’t looked back. I completed my BA in history at the University of British Columbia in 1994, and followed up with a Public History Diploma at Simon Fraser University. It was during that time that I got my first taste of heritage work as a summer student at a small British Columbian museum. In my case, it was the Elphinstone Pioneer Museum (now the Sunshine Coast Museum and Archives) where I spent the summer of 1996 answering tourists’ questions about The Beachcombers (we were located just up the road from Molly’s Reach – apparently The Beachcombers was a huge hit in Japan).
Unable to find permanent work in the heritage sector, I spent two tedious years working in corporate cell phone distribution (ugh), until the muse of history called me back to service and I received my MA in Canadian History from SFU in 2000. I then moved to Edmonton to pursue my Ph.D. at the University of Alberta, and during my time as a graduate student, I was fortunate enough to work with Historic Places Stewardship on several occasions, mostly working on heritage markers and assisting with the Alberta Heritage Survey Program. I finished my Ph.D. in history in 2008 and taught Canadian, Irish and American history, most recently at Keyano College in Fort McMurray. Though I enjoyed my time as a history instructor, I have always been fascinated by the heritage sector, and I was thrilled when I was given the opportunity to join the Historic Places Stewardship team in Edmonton.
On the personal side of things, I am blessed with a great wife and three amazing daughters, whose own interests range from bird-watching to dog-sledding to Shakespeare. I enjoy cooking (with mixed success) and continuing to learn as much history as possible. I remain a staunch Vancouver Canucks fan, and I welcome everyone’s scorn and derision.
I’m excited to join the team and I look forward to meeting everyone in person.
Written by: Allan Rowe, Historic Places Research Officer.