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LGBTQ Welcoming Guidelines

These guidelines are intended to provide institutions and members of the museum community with a series of parameters, which they may consider when assessing how to provide the LGBTQ community—staff, visitors, management, and allies from all fields—with a welcoming experience.

Welcoming Guidelines Cover

LGBTQ Alliance at #AAM2017

Please join us at the upcoming Annual Meeting. There are several events and sessions related to LGBTQ issues. One of the sessions, "Welcoming LGBTQ Communities: Real Strategies in Action," will focus on case studies from museums in the field working to implement the Welcoming Guidelines.

Sessions & events:

LGBTQ Steering Committee Meeting

Welcoming LGBTQ Communities: Real Strategies in Action

The Big Schmooze: Culture, Colleagues, and Connections! (Multi-PN Meet-Up)

LGBTQ Alliance Luncheon

Marketplace of Ideas: LGBTQ Welcoming Questions

LGBTQ Latinxs” in Museums: Challenging Mainstream Narratives”

LGBTQ Collections Focus: Field Trip to Missouri Historical Society

Please don’t hesitate to reach out to Mike Lesperance at


LGBTQ Alliance

The Latest from the LGBTQ Alliance

Members Speak Out Against Withdrawal of Title IX Transgender Protections 
(March 2017)

On February 22, the Trump administration rescinded guidelines issued under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 by the Obama administration last year that sought to protect transgender students in schools and colleges from discrimination, including allowing them to use bathrooms and facilities corresponding with their gender identity. 

Joint Statement on Orlando Assault of LGTBQ and Latino Communities (June 2016)

LGBTQ Alliance Offers Welcoming Guidelines for Museums (May 2016)

LGBTQ Alliance - an AAM Professional Network (LGBTQ Alliance Logo)

About the LGBTQ Alliance

The Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Queer Alliance (LGBTQ Alliance) of the American Alliance of Museums provides a forum for communication and dialogue and is committed to advancing diversity, equity, inclusion and inquiry with particular respect to sexual orientation and gender identity within museums.

The LGBTQ Alliance facilitates transgender, queer, gay, lesbian and bisexual visibility by promoting and enhancing awareness, understanding and acceptance regarding museum-related LGBTQ issues. Its focus includes both internal needs and opportunities including staff, leadership and organizational structure, and external, stakeholder-related work ranging from visitor amenities and messaging to programs and collections. The network serves as a visible and accessible safe space for museum professionals who identify as LGBTQ or allies. We welcome AAM members of all sexual orientations and gender identities and encourage involvement across the organization in promoting museums that include LGBTQ voices at every level.

awareness | equity | inclusion (LGBTQ Alliance tagline) 


Mike Lesperance
The Design Minds, Fairfax, Virginia

Steering Committee Members

  • Mike Lesperance, Principal, Interpretive Planner, The Design Minds, Inc., Fairfax, Virginia

  • Jill Austin, Curator
  • Erin Bailey, Commissioner, Seattle LGBT Commission
  • David Blackburn, Site Manager, Hopewell Furnace NHS, Elverson, Pennsylvania
  • Michael Berlucci, Community Engagement Manager, Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk, Virginia
  • W. James Burns, Ph.D., Director, University of Arizona Museum of Art, Tucson
  • Barbara Cohen-Stratyner, Independent Museum Professional
  • Sarah Cohn, Evaluation and  Research Coordinator, Science Center of Minnesota, Saint Paul
  • Justin Estoque, (Retired) Executive Vice President and Deputy Director, The Autry National Center, Los Angeles, California
  • Daniel Forbes, Sheehan Gallery, Whitman College, Walla Walla, Washington
  • Paul Gabriel, Independent Museum Professional
  • Peter Gagnon, Independent Museum Professional
  • Annette Gavigan, Exhibits Registrar, California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco, California
  • Jason Hall, Curator, Battleship New Jersey Museum Memorial, Camden, New Jersey
  • Paul Hammond, Director, California State Railroad Museum, Sacramento, California
  • Jaden Hansen, President, Museum of Minnesota
  • Tim Hecox, Exhibit Developer, Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, Portland
  • Joe Heimlich, Ph.D., Executive Director, Center For Research and Evaluation, Center of  Science and Industry; Professor Emeritus, The Ohio State University, Columbus
  • Joel Hoffman, Executive Director, Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami
  • John Jackson, Exhibition Designer, Nelson Atkins Museum of  Art, Kansas City, Missouri
  • Julie Johnson, Ph.D., Program Director, National Science Foundation, Arlington, Virginia
  • Jerry Kajpust, Deputy Director For External Relations, Leslie Lohman Museum of Gay and  Lesbian Art, New York, New York
  • Peter Kleinpass, Graduate Candidate—Museology, University of Washington, Seattle
  • Christopher Leitch, Independent Museum Professional           
  • Michael Madeja, Museum Programs Assistant, American Philosophical Society, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Matthew Northey, Public Relations Specialist, The Field Museum, Chicago, Illinois
  • Hunter O’Hanian, Director, Leslie Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art, New York, New York
  • Randy Roberts, Ph.D., Deputy Director, Manetti Shrem Museum, UC Davis, California
  • Davin James Sokup, Independent Museum Professional
  • John Suau, Executive Director, The Historical Society of Washington, D.C.
  • Matthew Toland, Assistant Director, The Campbell Center For Historic Preservation, Mount Carroll, Illinois
  • Rachel Tooker, Director, Roseville Utility Exploration Center, Roseville, California
  • Renae Youngs, Director of Research and  Evaluation, Minnesota State Arts Board