How to use this report

Download the AAM DEAI Working Group Full Report 2018 now!

This document presents a shared vocabulary and a set of basic principles to guide museum professionals toward incorporating DEAI into the heart of our work. It is meant to be a starting place, not an endpoint. The working group’s findings are presented here as food for thought to jump-start the long-term processes that effective DEAI work requires.

Our five insights summarize key takeaways from the working group’s conversations about big-picture ideas and specific examples from members’ experiences. Selected responses to questions the group posed at the 2017 AAM Annual Meeting and on social media are meant to highlight feedback and inspire action. Several ideas reappear across sections, since many of the issues we discussed are interconnected. The report also outlines the working group’s process to model how museum staffs, leadership, boards, and other stakeholders can launch similar convenings.

Overall, the report explores challenges faced and lessons learned by a few of those who have taken on the effort to expand DEAI in museums. We invite you to take note of which insights resonate with you and share those notes with others. Continue to visit the Alliance website to join the conversation through blog posts and other interactive opportunities.

Working Group Participants

AAM enthusiastically thanks the members of the Working Group on Diversity, Equity, Accessibility, and Inclusion for their generosity and wisdom:


Dr. Johnnetta Betsch Cole
The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
Cook Ross Inc.

Laura L. Lott
American Alliance of Museums


Christine Anagnos
Association of Art Museum Directors

Dina Bailey
Mountain Top Vision
American Association for State and Local History

Brian Carter
Association of African American Museums

Dr. Robert M. Davis
Museum Consultant
American Alliance of Museums Board Member

Eduardo Diaz
Smithsonian Latino Center
American Alliance of Museums Board Member

Omar Eaton-Martinez
National Museum of American History

Dr. Nicole Ivy
American Alliance of Museums

Brooke Leonard
American Alliance of Museums

Mike Lesperance
The Design Minds
LGBTQ Alliance

Dr. Tonya Matthews
Michigan Science Center
American Alliance of Museums Board Member

Laura Huerta Migus
Association of Children’s Museums

Machel Monenerkit
National Museum of the American Indian

Monica Montgomery
Museum Hue

Dr. Porchia Moore
Columbia Museum of Art

Lisa Sasaki
Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center

Cecile Shellman
Museum DEAI Consultant, Cecile Shellman Consulting

Kathy Dwyer Southern
The George Washington University

Chris Taylor
Minnesota Historical Society

Beth Ziebarth
Smithsonian Institution Accessibility Programs

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