Old Salem president works to improve popular heritage site

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- A typical day at Old Salem features picturesque views and lots of visitors.

Around 440,000 people visit the heritage site each year, and if you were one of them this year, there's a good chance you saw Frank Vagnone sweeping the sidewalks.

"There's absolutely no way I could understand what are the weak spots in a non-profit like this without actually being on the street," said Vognone, who is also Old Salem's president.

Through his interactions with visitors, he has made changes at Old Salem, including a new map and programs.

Vagnone was hired in 2016 and the Winston-Salem Foundation made a $40,000 grant to help in the national search.

"We're doing Strong program analysis," he said. "Trying to figure out what's making a lot of money and what's mission-centric and we're slowly going to bring these two together."

Moravians settled here in Old Salem in 1776 and it became a living history museum in 1950.