Mar 2021-“Next Steps in Creating the Smithsonian American Women’s History Museum”

Tuesday, March 23, 2021, 12:00-1:30 pm via Zoom
Registration Link
(Please register for this free public meeting by 6pm on 3/22/21)

The Clearinghouse on Women’s Issues is delighted to celebrate Women’s History Month by sharing information on the recent passage of the Smithsonian Women’s History Museum Act to create a museum for which the federal government will pay half the development and operating costs of this museum under auspices of the Smithsonian Institution.

Many of us have supported the development of this museum mainly via the privately funded and mostly virtual National Women’s History Museum (NWHM) incorporated in 1996. To show equal treatment of women, many believed the museum should be partly supported by the federal government and be part of the Smithsonian. We are delighted that this is now to become a reality. A Congressional Commission created in 2014 to study the establishment of the museum issued a detailed report in 2016 recommending not only that the U.S. needs and deserves a physical women’s history museum but that it be part of the Smithsonian and located on or near the National Mall in Washington, DC. The bipartisan Commission was created by a bill sponsored by Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney.

Congresswoman Maloney then introduced H.R. 19 in the 115th Congress and H.R. 1980 in the 116th Congress based on the Commission’s recommendations. The bipartisan Smithsonian Women’s History Museum Act passed the House in 2019. The legislation was then included in the bipartisan omnibus spending package at the end of 2020, which was signed into law on Dec. 27, 2020. Representative Maloney will outline key
accomplishments and next steps for funding and building the museum.

Wendy Pangburn, who served as the Executive Director of the American Museum of Women’s History Congressional Commission will add brief insights from the Commission to help guide the museum’s creation.

We are delighted that both Holly Hotchner, President and CEO of the National Women’s History Museum, and Museum Board Chair, Susan Whiting, will join us to highlight NWHM’s historic role in getting legislation passed for a museum. They will also discuss NWHM’s current programming and how the Museum will continue to shine a light on women’s contributions to American history while the plans for the Smithsonian develop.

To conclude, we will hear from Julissa Marenco, Assistant Secretary Communications and External Affairs and Chief Marketing Officer for the Smithsonian, who will share an early-stage update for the Smithsonian American Women’s History Museum and the Smithsonian American Women’s History Initiative. Sign up for their enewsletter:

We hope to reserve time for the presenters to comment on each other’s presentation and for some audience questions to them.

RSVP to the March 23, 2021 Zoom meeting here. (Please register for this free public meeting by 6pm on 3/22/21) At meeting time (noon), remember to join without activating your video and or audio if you do not wish to be seen, heard, or recorded. You may also want to rename your participant name to first name and last initial. This meeting will be recorded and posted to YouTube, and possibly also to Public Access Television.

Next Clearinghouse on Women’s Issues Zoom Meeting will be Tuesday Noon, Apr. 27, 2021 on The First 100 Days of the Biden/Harris Administration: Achievements, Expectations and Challenges.