Cinnamon Catlin-Legutko

Job Title: 


Areas of Expertise/Research: 

Archaeology / Anthropology
Decolonizing Museum Practice
Decorative Art
Fine Art
Library and Archives
Museum Administration
Museum Society
Public Programs
Publicity and Marketing
Technology / Web


  • Illinois State Museum, Springfield

Mail Address: 

502 S. Spring St., Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-7011


Working in museums for more than twenty years, Cinnamon Catlin-Legutko believes they have the power to change lives, inspire movements, and challenge authority. A museum director since 2001, Cinnamon is a frequent presenter at national museum meetings and is often asked to comment on national museum issues. As the President/CEO of the Abbe Museum (Bar Harbor) from 2009 to 2019, she was the motivational leader behind the museum's decolonization initiative, working with the Native communities in Maine to develop policies and protocols to ensure collaboration and cooperation with Wabanaki people. Prior to joining the Abbe in 2009, Cinnamon was the director of the General Lew Wallace Study & Museum in Crawfordsville, Indiana where she led the organization to the National Medal for Museum Service in 2008. In 2019, Cinnamon was awarded the Neal Allen, Jr. award by the Maine Historical Society for her outstanding contributions to the field of Maine history. Later that year, Cinnamon became the new director of the Illinois State Museum. In 2016 Cinnamon gave her first TEDx talk, We Must Decolonize Our Museums and she's been featured on the Museopunks podcast series. She's the author of Museum Administration 2.0 (2016), The Art of Healing: The Wishard Art Collection (2004), and co-editor of the Small Museum Toolkit (2012). Cinnamon holds a BA in anthropology and art history from Purdue University, and is a graduate of the University of Arkansas (Fayetteville) MA program in anthropology with a specialization in museum studies. Cinnamon served as treasurer for the American Association for State and Local History (2012-2014) and was the founding chair of their Small Museums Committee. She currently serves as a board member of the American Alliance of Museums. Twitter handle: @clegutko