Museum of the Peace Corps Experience


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P.O. Box 2427

Oregon City, OR 97045

  1. (503)381-4206

CMPCE is a 501(c)(3)

nonprofit organization not affiliated with the U.S. Peace Corps.

Letter from the CMPCE President

April 2016

The Committee for a Museum of the Peace Corps Experience (CMPCE) is moving forward!

Our small but mighty committee recently participated in the National Returned Peace Corps (NPCA) group leaders regional meeting, Saturday, March 19, 2016 at Portland Community College in Portland, Oregon.  The president and CEO of NPCA, Glenn Blumhorst presided at the meeting.  Glenn told us about activities and new initiatives that are in place to support affiliate groups.  One change is that NPCA affiliate groups will be able to use the NPCA 501 (c) (3) status for tax deductible donations and the second is building a group-specific webpage through the NPCA website.

This is great news for us, although we are already a 501 (c) (3) and a NPCA affiliate member, it means that we can begin to grow our network in ways we haven’t before.  This is a crucial time in our journey towards realizing a brick and mortar or even virtual museum.  We are the only group to date, that has laid a foundation to support the third goal in this way, received grants and had actual exhibits.  We also know, through talking with other RPCVs around the country that there are many who want and know that a museum is so important in preserving the legacy of Peace Corps. Glenn is on board to help us in any way he can to keep this momentum going.

This is our call for action. We would like to hear from you.  If you want to participate in PC’s third goal with us, let us know. We can use help with grants, receiving and archiving artifacts, contacting your local RPCV group to tell them about the project, would like to have a temporary exhibit in your locale or lend financial support or just tell us you like the idea!

Contact information is on our Home page.

Thank you,

Nicola Dino

President, RPCV

Ecuador 1993-1997

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world.  Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.
~ Margaret Meade

Letter from the CMPCE President

May 2015

Our 50th celebration panels are on the move!

The beautiful panels created for us to display at the Oregon Historical Society in 2011 are being displayed at the Dayton International Peace Museum.  The exhibit  began In mid January and will continue through mid July. 

The panels will be used to focus on the Peace Corps Experience, our role in furthering world peace, which aligns with their own mission.  They report an all-time high in attendance with over 2500 people visiting as of mid May.
For additional information about the museum, the website is:

Here are some pictures from Dayton International Peace Museum’s Facebook site.

Following their time at Dayton, the panels will be moved to Wilmington College in Wilmington, Ohio. This will be the perfect followup to their hosting a conference and workshops with the Peace Corps earlier.   The panels  and banners will be part of an exhibit in 2016 running from January Through May. 

Wilmington College is a liberal arts college.  They have a strong Peace heritage and promote  peacemaking and reconciliation.  Their website is:

(Update)  Here are some
pictures of the Wilmington
College exhibit in the
Quaker Heritage Center
that they sent us.

We are pleased to
collaborate with these
two institutions whose
missions are clearly
compatible with ours.
It is our wish that we
continue to reach out
and be sought out to
bring our message to
the American culture.

Thank you,

Nicola Dino


Ecuador 1993-1997


On Saturday, April 26, 2014, the Committee for a Museum of the Peace Corps Experience (CMPCE) opened their exhibit titled, The Peace Corps:  50 Years of Service.  This show was part of the International Week Celebration at the college.

The opening day celebration began at 10:00 AM in the Niemeyer Center with remarks from Dr. Joanne Truesdell and Senator Michael Dembrow of the Oregon Legislature and was followed by a concert of songs by the men’s chorus, Satori.

Following that performance visitors were

able to view the exhibit including panels
that cover all aspects of Peace Corps
service and see the art and artifacts
brought to the United States by RPCV’s
from their countries of service.  Light
refreshments were served.

The rest of International Week atthe college had day long events including RPCV panel discussions, regional arts performances, and food from many countries.

Tuesday, April 29:  A special program of African drumming by the group Anansi Beat was followed by a drum making demonstration.  Regional foods were also featured.

Wednesday, April 30:  Asia was the focus with a discussion panel.

Thursday, May 1:  Latin America was

featured including a panel discussion.

At the close of the 50th anniversary exhibit, OHS made a gift of the panels, banners, and videos to CMPCE so that we are now able to make them available to others to enhance their exhibits.  The panels and banners provided a wealth of information allowing visitors to get an intimate feel for the experience of Peace Corps Volunteers.   The work done by Bryan Potter Design and Infinity Images was amazing.  Many positive comments were also made about the videos, produced by Dennis Burkhart, in which returned PCVs related their experiences in various aspects of  Peace Corps service.


CMPCE Goes to Washington

October 2016

The National Peace Corps Association’s Peace Corps Connect Conference was held in Washington, D.C., September 21st -25th.  We were invited to participate by NPCA’s Director Glenn Blumhorst during his visit for the regional Portland area NPCA meeting in March.  We had an opportunity to present a short program about CMPCE’s history, experiences and hopes to build a permanent Museum of the Peace Corps Experience.

“Peace Corps Connect is the Peace Corps community’s annual conference hosted by the National Peace Corps Association (NPCA) and its affiliate groups to connect, advocate and impact.  At this year’s conference – Peace Corps Beyond – we look forward to celebrating 55 years of Peace Corps and the limitless potential of our community to continue to create change.  The conference will highlight work being done by our community members and partner organizations and explore how, through increased collaboration, we can continue to champion Peace Corps ideals.”  (


The purpose for our presence there was to let the greater Peace Corps community learn about our museum project through having a meeting of all interested RPCV’s who would want to work with us as part of our committee, attend and present our project at the Affiliate Group Member meeting and have an exhibit space at George Washington University during the two main conference days.  We were able to accomplish all three goals and the response was overwhelming.

The people who came to the initial meeting represented service in eight countries and spanned coast to coast, Oregon to Maine.  We have since had a number of people want to get on board and have had our first national telephone conference to move forward.  We have now identified major areas to begin the work:

  1. marketing and fundraising

  2. digital and virtual museum

  3. website enhancement

  4. collection, storing and organizing artifacts

  5. planning a marketing strategy

It is an ambitious project but we know that it just takes one step forward to begin.

In reality, this is not the beginning.  CMPCE has been successful for more than a decade putting the building blocks in place toward having a museum.  From our foundation and the founding members of CMPCE, especially Martin Kaplan, who continues to be part of the Portland committee, the next steps can proceed.

From a personal perspective, I would like to share a couple of my emails that I sent to Martin, Bill, Ron, Suzie, and Paul.  Hopefully that will give you a small sense of my experience and feelings.

“Another great day for CMPCE.  I handed out our brochure to the aides of both Senators Merkley and Wyden.  There was a great reception from the Affiliate Groups.  I had three rapid round sessions and one 2 minute talk for the whole group.  At another reception, I handed out more brochures and all the feedback was positive.  Had a chance to talk with Tom, Phyllis and Jackie from CRPCA also attending the conference.”

“I spent the day at the exhibition hall.  The responses were tremendous and lots of great information and networking.  I might not come back with any brochures.  I almost talked a board member from The Friends of Malaysia into crashing their meeting to give a presentation.  Peace Corps third goal office Director, B. J. Whetstine came over to talk with me.  I was also asked for a written piece to put into a newsletter.  Lots of people are ready to donate their stuff.  We need to write a grant to buy a warehouse!  I feel like we got so much more (from the conference) than we originally planned.”

Without the collaboration of the members of CMPCE, Glenn Blumhorst and the NPCA staff and our friend and champion in Washington, Patricia Wand, we could not have had a presence at Peace Corps Connect. I look forward to working with all those who have been working and have stepped up to help bring our mission, “To inspire connection with the world by sharing the experience of living within diverse cultures”, into reality.


Nicola Dino