National Blues Museum Staff
Jeffery is a St. Louis native of College Hill on the city’s North side, graduate of Vashon High and Hall of Fame Inductee. He received his Bachelor of Science Business degree from Harris-Stowe University where he was awarded the HSSU Community Service Trail Blazer of the year award. Jeffery has provided business oversight on various fundraiser campaigns for numerous not-for-profit organizations such as, The Wolff Jazz Institute housed on the HSSU campus and Citizens for Community Improvement where he served as V.P. of Business Development just to name a few. He is a proud son of Bernice and Rev. Leo Hardin Sr., an eight-medal recipient for his service in the Korean War. He and his siblings sang in the choir at his father’s church, where he quickly discovered the power of gospel music and its influence in blues, jazz and R & B. He’s widely considered to be one of St. Louis’s premier male vocalist and entertainers. His versatile style of gospel, jazz, blues and R & B has kept him in demand.
Visitor Experience Coordinator
Dave Beardsley serves as the Visitor Experience Coordinator for the museum. In this role, Dave has an important job of managing the museum’s volunteer programs, as well as providing marketing support to include community outreach, guiding group tours and assisting with the music performances.
A former firefighter and paramedic, Beardsley’s longtime passion for the blues rose to the forefront of his life back in the early nineties, when he helped put together a first aid team for the Blues Heritage Festival in St. Louis. His immersion in the festival atmosphere allowed him to connect with performers and players in the local blues scene, and in 1997 he served on the board of that year’s St. Louis Blues Heritage Festival. In 2000 he created STLBlues.net, a multifaceted website that has gained international recognition as one of the top e-destinations for blues news and events, and is also a place to find and book local talent. In 2008, the website was recognized by the Blues Foundation in Memphis with a “Keeping the Blues Alive” award in the internet category. In 2010, he helped co-found the National Blues Museum, and has remained heavily involved in the promotion and fundraising of the Museum. Beardsley is also a member of the St. Louis Blues Society.
Gift Shop Manager
Jakki Brown is the Retail Lead at the National Blues Museum. In this role, she manages the sales and displays of merchandise as well as overseeing ticket sales for live performances and concerts. Brown has worked as an entrepreneur for 26 years in the fields of cosmetology and retail sales. In her spare time she continues to enjoy empowering women through the beauty of hairstyles and Mary Kay cosmetics. Jakki spent her childhood in the St. Louis area, later graduating from Crispus Attucks High School in Indianapolis Indiana. She currently resides in Edwardsville Illinois. Married to Eric Brown for 30 years, she is the mother of three and likes to call herself “A Five Star Gramma.”
Terry L. Hardin is the Operations Manager for the National Blues Museum. In this role, he oversees the day-to-day operations of the museum, maintains building security, and serves as the building coordinator and primary contact for all facility issues. Hardin has built an extensive career in security and investigation whose prior appointments include Confluence Charter Schools, Presence Covenant Medical Center, and the US Army Military Police/Special Reaction Team. Hardin worked as a firefighter and fire prevention specialist with the Decatur, IL Fire Department, as a forensic investigator and evidence specialist at Unified Investigations & Sciences, and as a fire protection systems manager at a major plastic container manufacturing company.”
Hardin is a US Army Veteran and graduate of the US Army Military Police Academy. He is an Illinois native.
Debbie Krall is the controller for the National Blues Museum. In this role, she is responsible for all financial requirements and reporting for the museum. She is a Purdue University graduate with a major in Accounting. Before moving to the St. Louis area Debbie’s career concentrated primarily in construction accounting, rounded out by 5 years with a federally funded non-profit organization . She came to the museum after being employed by a prominent development company in downtown St. Louis. Debbie is a lifelong supporter of Shriners Hospital for Children and an avid jazz and blues fan.
Melanie is the Entertainment Manager at the National Blues Museum. She is responsible for managing the Lumiere Place Legends Room, the performance venue located inside the National Blues Museum, as well as booking live music for the museum. Melanie is a St. Louis native and received her BS in Business with an emphasis in Communications from the University of Missouri – St. Louis. She also earned her MBA in Business Management from Lindenwood University in St. Charles, MO.
Jeri Peterson is the Executive Assistant at the National Blues Museum. In this role, she is responsible for supporting the leadership team in all operational aspects including talent, membership and donor cultivation. Jeri has been a part of the St. Louis music, arts and culture and higher education community for many years. She has worked with The Ralph Butler Band, Dance St. Louis, Stages St. Louis, St. Louis Black Repertory Company and the University of Missouri – St. Louis, to name a few. She has served on the boards of Art St. Louis and International Live Entertainment Association – St. Louis Chapter (formerly International Special Events Society – St. Louis Chapter). Jeri has her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a concentration in marketing management from Utica College of Syracuse University. A native New Yorker, Jeri enjoys traveling and spending time with her family and friends.
Gift Shop Lead
Lori J. Williams is the Gift Shop Associate at the National Blues Museum. Her role is to welcome every customer, assist them in any way possible to make their museum and concert experience wonderful. Lori has 12 years gift shop management experience. This native St. Louisian is the proud mother of a son. She is a graduate of Lindbergh High School, a cosmetology instructor and owner of Chacola Jewelry
Avion T. Wolford
Avion was born and raised in St. Louis, MO and is a graduate from Sumner High School where he played football and was an Honor Student. Avion is a lover of all musical genres and has been playing drums since the age of 6. He has extensive experience in the service industry and operations. He loves spending time with his family, traveling, and long walks. “I love what I do here as an operations worker at the National Blues Museum.” – Avion T. Wolford
As Education Coordinator, Kirk oversees the development of museum related curriculum as well as the planning, coordinating, and development of both onsite and offsite educational programming. Kirk graduated from Missouri State University with a B.S.Ed. in History Education. He decided to pursue a career in education to make a difference in people’s lives and make an impact on the community. Kirk first heard the blues as a child and was inspired to play drums and guitar. He has been a student of the blues ever since.
Contact the National Blues Museum
Located at 615 Washington Ave. St. Louis, MO 63101