Hagley Museum and Library’s Commitment to
Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Issues- 2023

Hagley is committed to inspiring people to be innovative in their own lives through investigation and exploration of our historical collections, original DuPont power yard, and online resources.  We recognize that innovation can be the spark that empowers a person to change the world for the better. Through our offerings on-site and on-line, Hagley reaches a global audience interested in the history of American invention, innovation, and business history. In 2021 alone, close to 685,000 unique visitors went to to research our collections, plan STEM study trips, and enjoy our expansive digital exhibitions.  

As businesses embrace a commitment to sound practices in Environmental, Social, and Governance issues, it is also important for museums and libraries to do the same. At the heart of Hagley’s Strategic Plan 2026 are Relevance, Stewardship, and Sustainability goals that support a healthy environment, encourage diversity, equity and inclusion, and strengthen our communities through outreach and engagement. Our commitment to ESG is grounded in Hagley’s values.

Through active engagement with our many stakeholders, Hagley encourages, and values open dialog and feedback through ongoing visitor surveys, special focus groups, and an “Ask Hagley” feature on our website.

For this updated 2023 ESG report, we have added twelve updates.

Hagley’s Values

Safety First

Integrity: We are committed to treating all people with honesty and fairness and are dedicated to the pursuit of truth, accuracy, and uprightness.

Stewardship: We embrace our duty to care for and manage the historical, environmental, human, and financial resources entrusted to us.

Service: We endeavor to make a positive difference in the lives of the people we seek to serve, and to do so with kindness, respect, dignity, and superior customer service. 

Love of Knowledge and Learning: We strive to foster curiosity, experimentation, investigation, and innovative problem-solving.

Excellence:  We are dedicated to pursuing the highest standards in all that we do.

Teamwork: We promote harmonious relations and a spirit of collaboration in our workplace and communities. 


Hagley’s Environmental Initiatives (Stewardship)

  • Reduce Carbon Footprint
    • Following in the sustainability footsteps set by DuPont since its founding, Hagley continues to reduce its carbon footprint through use of waterpower technologies to generate electricity for buildings and vehicles. We will continue to seek out new green energy opportunities including the use of low-flow stream turbines for use in the Visitor Center/Nation of Inventors building if funding becomes available and for the potential of future electric vehicle charging stations in the visitor parking lot.
    • The museum is using a 19th century Hercules water turbine to generate electricity for our operating 1880s Machine Shop, taking the shop off the electrical grid.
    • A 19th century Rechard water turbine has been restored and repurposed to generate electricity for our museum’s electric shuttle. Hagley is the only museum in the U.S. using on-site waterpower as an energy source for electric vehicles, setting an example of innovative green energy use and decreasing our fuel consumption. In 2023, we’re researching if a hybrid vehicle or a second electric shuttle will be the most cost-effective addition to the electric vehicle fleet.
    • We’ve optimized our energy use for controlling the environment in our collections’ storage spaces, to substantially reduce the energy required to care for collections.
    • In 2023, a new Building Automation System will be installed to allow for better control over and response to environmental issues in collections’ storage spaces.
    • Our decrease in energy-consumption is measured in decreased utility bills and fuel used by our museum vehicle fleet. In 2023, we will add a new electric or hybrid vehicle which will decrease our daily gas usage.
  • Save Pollinators
    • Our gardens are managed organically, without the use of synthetic chemical pesticides or fertilizers.
    • A quarter-acre pollinator garden supports a healthy native plant and non-invasive species environment.
    • With the decline of mason bees in the mid-Atlantic in the past several years, we have introduced new beehives in the pollinator garden and Workers’ Hill garden to encourage healthy hives. Bees found swarming on the property will be relocated to the hives for safety.
    • A replanted orchard and espaliered fruit trees in the restored French garden provide a plentiful food source for pollinators.
    • Surrounding the orchard trees, a meadow garden encourages sustainable gardening by decreasing water consumption and providing a natural habitat for critters.
    • The recently restored Rose Garden is a natural attraction for pollinators.
    • We will monitor our beehives to ensure a healthy bee population.
    • In 2022, our beekeeper was able to harvest honey from our hives which she sells at events such as the Hagley Craft Fair.
    • In 2022 and in 2023, produce from the garden is donated to local soup kitchens to provide healthy meals for those in need.
  • Encourage Stream Health
    • Rebuilding from the 2021 flood from the remnants of Hurricane Ida includes dredging the Hagley millrace to remove debris and silt from our waterways, which safeguards our historic mechanical equipment and prevents additional impurities from reentering the Brandywine.
      • In 2022 when the millrace was dredged, we found that when tested, the silt and soil deposited after the flood were clean and could be used as clean fill dirt. 
    • An expanded River Rangers program for students and families encourages them to take an active role in getting and keeping our rivers healthy. We track pollutants in the stream over time and seek out collaborations with up-stream entities that can foster stream health.
    • Hagley is a partner with the Brandywine Shad 2020 program to reintroduce shad to the waterway. Safe fish passages are being considered for areas near the property’s historic dams, which will remain intact.  In 2022, the group was renamed as the Brandywine River Restoration Trust. No plan of action has been proposed for consideration by the Hagley Board.
    • Family fishing activities encourage safe catch and release practices.


Hagley’s Social Initiatives to Support Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion (Relevance)

  • Broaden Scope of Collecting
    • The Hagley Library is the largest business history library in the country. We have always sought to broaden the narrative about American enterprise and innovation through our collections and programming, including the experience of underrepresented communities in the stories of American business, technology, and industrial design. We also are working to make these stories more easily discoverable through enhanced cataloging techniques.
    • Hagley’s Women in Enterprise initiative focuses on the role of women in business history and celebrates their accomplishments. Hagley’s collections that support this initiative include those of Catalyst, Inc. Avon Products, the Amram/Brick Women Inventors Collection, and our collection of 19th century U.S. Patent Models. Beginning in 2023, the Women in Enterprise initiative will focus on producing oral histories with women who have made an impact on business. An advisory committee will be selected to help identify women to be nominated for oral histories.
  • Tell Diverse Stories
    • Our Nation of Inventors exhibition showcases and celebrates the diversity of inventors. The 19th-century patent process was designed to be democratic; it encouraged anyone to apply for a patent. The application process did not require inventors to disclose their gender, race, or religion, and was open to non-U.S.-born inventors.  Through careful research, we know more about who was inventing and we’re bringing their stories to life.
    • In 2022, Hagley’s patent models were featured on Jeopardy!, confirming that the World of Patent Models has broad public appeal.
    • We’re conducting oral histories that focus on Black STEM Pioneers in Delaware, highlighting those who have made inroads and a difference in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. In 2022, Hagley continued its partnership with Jeanne Nutter and Ron Dean to produce two new oral history interviews (for a total of three oral histories) for the Black STEM Pioneers in Delaware project—one with Rosetta McKinley Henderson (first Black woman chemist hired by DuPont) and William Bazzelle, an early Black chemist at DuPont who also supported STEM educational initiatives. Archival Collections Staff, led by Kevin Martin, developed the online exhibit on the life of Henderson.
    • From these oral histories, we’re committed to producing documentaries to air on our website and sharing these with schools throughout the region.
  • Partnering with Organizations
    • Patent Models
      • In 2021 and 2022, we have an exhibition at the University of California San Diego (UCSD) in their new Design and Innovation building that fosters innovation and entrepreneurship.  UCSD is ranked 412 out of 3,790 universities when it comes to the racial/ethnic diversity of their students. At UCSD “a diverse graduate student body brings a broad spectrum of ideas and perspectives into the learning environment, and we welcome the variety of personal experiences, values, and worldviews that arise from differences of culture and circumstance.” 
      • We have an ongoing exhibit of patent models at The Mill in Wilmington, Delaware, a community and co-working space for entrepreneurs.
      • In 2022, we have an exhibition of 50 patent models on display at the Philadelphia Airport in their community art space galleries.
      • We strive to add outreach locations for our patent model collection and to partner with regional libraries to showcase exhibitions.  As example, when the new Kennett Square Library opens, we will work with them on a loaned exhibition.
      • In 2023, we are entertaining more inquiries for loans of patent models, including the Los Angeles County Libraries and the European Patent Office in Munich, Germany.
  • Increase access to Hagley by breaking down barriers to admission
    • We offer scholarships and bus transportation to students in Title 1 programs in Delaware schools. Our goal is to raise and make $15,000 available each year. We will continue to hold a 5K run at Hagley in 2023 to raise funds for this program.
    • Area libraries have free passes to Hagley that their patrons can sign out for free.
    • Through ArtReach we’re offering low admission fees for those with an Access card.
    • Community Groups Working with Hagley Museum
      • Serviam Academy--Serviam Girls Academy is the only tuition-free private school for girls from under-resourced families in Delaware. Serviam’s mission is to provide quality education to 60 underserved middle school girls in grades 5th to 8th.
      • Language University--The mission of Language U is to introduce children to world languages and cultures through a fun, engaging experience in a low-stress environment.
      • Urban Promise--The mission of Urban Promise Wilmington is to equip children and young adults with the skills necessary for academic achievement, life management, personal growth, and servant leadership.
      • TechGirlz--TechGirlz’ mission is to inspire middle school girls to explore the possibilities of technology to empower their future careers. Their vision is to create a world where girls have a lifelong passion and confidence in their use of technology throughout their careers.
  • Provide DE&I training for staff
    • Hagley has partnered with KnowledgeCity and ArtReach to provide DE&I training to all employees. These interactive modules and classes are intended to show our staff ways to engage with and develop a diverse and inclusive workplace. The lessons provide strategies on creating awareness around systemic discrimination that can occur within an organization. Hagley understands that committing to change takes effort and diligence, these lessons are a step in the right direction and provide a roadmap to get there.
    • Hagley is committed to forming partnerships with HBCU’s in the area, such as Delaware State University, in an effort to broaden our recruiting methods to be more inclusive and increase minority hiring opportunities. 


Hagley’s Governance  (Sustainability)

  • The Eleutherian Mills-Hagley Foundation (aka Hagley Museum and Library) is a 501(c)3 educational nonprofit organization. The governing authority is the Hagley Board of Trustees. The Board has a Certificate of Incorporation in Delaware and Bylaws, and each Board committee has a Charter. The Board is committed to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and encourages Board members and senior staff to suggest potential candidates from diverse backgrounds.
    • Hagley Board of Trustees- Our Board is comprised of fourteen members who meet four times per year. They are an active and engaged group who support the institution through time, talents, and financial contributions.
      • Executive Committee, meets six times per year
      • Organization and Compensation Committee, meets four times per year
      • Audit and Finance Committee, meets four times per year
      • Investment Committee, meets four times per year
  • Accreditation
    • Hagley Museum is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums (AAM) and meets Core Standards for Public Trust and Accountability, Mission and Planning, Leadership and Organizational Structure, Education and Interpretation, and Facilities and Risk Management
  • Hagley is on the National Register of Historic Places and is a Historic Mechanical Engineering Landmark site.
  • Hagley is an Affiliate member of the Smithsonian Institution, the only affiliate in Delaware.
  • The Hagley Center for the History of Business, Technology, and Society Advisory Committee ensures the distribution of Hagley research fellowship opportunities and addresses issues of equity and merit. The Committee is comprised of accomplished historians with broad interests spanning our collections.
  • As Hagley builds on its successful track record of educational programs, we are working to develop a teacher advisory council consisting of a representative group of active classroom teachers from schools in the surrounding communities.  These teachers will support Hagley’s growth in terms of both onsite learning experiences and online learning resources to ensure that new programs and initiatives meet the expressed needs of current classroom teachers and their students.
  • Professional groups to which Hagley belongs:
    • American Alliance of Museums (AAM)
    • American Association for State and Local History (AASLH)
    • Association of Science and Technology Centers (ASTC)
    • Consortium for the History of Science, Technology, and Medicine (CHSTM)
    • Digital Public Library Association
    • Independent Research Libraries Association (IRLA)
    • National Digital Stewardship Alliance (NDSA)
  • Hagley maintains up-to-date management policies, including:
    • Code of Ethics
    • Conflict of Interest (including Whistleblower Policy)
    • Library Collections Development
    • Museum Artifact Management
    • Emergency Preparedness