SVHS Announces New Executive Director

June 14, 2017 - by mail to all current SVHS members:

Dear Members,

Over a year ago former Executive Director Harton Semple,Jr. informed the board of directors that he wished to retire rather than expand his role and responsibilities consistent with the long range plan of the Historical Society. The board initiated a succession plan and received interest from over 70 candidates for the position. Beginning in March, Harton engaged in behavior in opposition to board decisions and disseminated incorrect information to the membership. When the behavior continued, Harton was terminated and top candidate Karen Sebolt was hired. We want to thank him for his 14 years of service and wish him the best in the future. If you need further information regarding Harton's termination please contact Jay Brooks (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

The Sewickley Valley Historical Society is pleased to announce that Karen Sebolt has been named its new Executive Director. Karen has worked and volunteered in the non-profit sector for 30 years first as an executive in the healthcare industry and later in various roles within the community.

In 1980, Karen moved to Sewickley, eventually earning an M.B.A from the University of Pittsburgh, Katz Graduate School of Business. She met her husband, a Sewickley native and they set off on an adventure working and raising a family in Texas, California and Virginia until finally realizing their dream to move “back home” in 2010.

Karen has volunteered extensively within her community in the public schools, the Girl Scout Organization and at her church. Her keen interest in history has been evident from her teaching art history to school children, visits to museums across the country and purchasing two historic homes. Currently she is helping her church plan their recognition of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation.

Karen’s experience in fundraising, development initiatives and community outreach will be an asset to the organization and she looks forward to working with the membership and the board to further the mission of the Sewickley Valley Historical Society.


J. Judson Brooks, Jr.

Board of Directors
Sewickley Valley Historical Society

Become a Member!

To become a member, select from the options below.


To make a donation, click the button below.

What We Do

The mission of the Sewickley Valley Historical Society is to promote interest in and to record, collect, preserve, and document the history of the Sewickley Valley.

Click to learn more about our activities...

Join Us!

Are you interested in the history of Sewickley, the greater Pittsburgh region, or Western Pennsylvania? Join the Sewickley Valley Historical Society to both learn more about local history and help preserve it for future generations.

Click to learn more about joining us...