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The Excellence in DEAI Task Force


A visual of the the Continuum of Excellence for DEAI. Awareness & Commitment: Leadership Pledge; Assessment & education: Museum cohorts and training; Implementation: plans and policies resource center; Accountability: Data and Ongoing evaluationOver the course of 2019, as part of Facing Change: Advancing Museum Board Diversity & InclusionAAM’s unprecedented national initiative to diversify museum boards and build inclusive museum cultures—a task force charged with developing recommendations to embed DEAI more deeply into the Alliance’s standards and excellence programs, including accreditation, met several times to explore and make recommendations on: 

  • The characteristics of inclusive museums and strategies for how to best assess and measure excellence in DEAI in museums
  • A DEAI pledge that asks museum leaders to commit to inclusive museum practices
  • Core policies museums should have in place to support inclusion throughout their structure and programming
  • AAM standards and excellence programs through an inclusion lens and recommending updates as needed
  • Topics for ongoing education and training of museum staff, board, volunteers, and other key constituents

Findings and recommendations from the task force are currently being considered and a report for the field is being prepared.


The full task force membership represents a diverse segment of national museum leadership.

Image of Lonnie Bunch, a black man with silver and black hair, sits in front of a grey backdrop wearing a dark grey suit with a striped tie and metal framed glasses. Co-Chair:  Lonnie Bunch
Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution
Washington, DC



Image of Elizabeth Pierce, a white woman with shoulder length hair wearing a light blue jacket and white shirt. Co-Chair: Elizabeth Pierce
President & CEO, Cincinnati Museum Center
Cincinnati, OH



Image of Paul Backhouse, a white man standing outside wearing an jacket with a turned up collar and wire rimmed sunglasses. Paul Backhouse
Senior Director of Heritage and Environment Resources Office, Seminole Tribe of Florida
Clewiston, FL



Headshot of a woman with shoulder length brown hair smiling slightly at the camera head tilted slightly to the left.Amy Bartow-Melia (Accreditation Commission Chair)
MacMillan Associate Director for Audience Engagement, National Museum of American History
Washington, DC



Image of Rod Bigelow, a white man standing in front of a tree backdrop wearing a dark suit and light colored tie. Rod Bigelow
Executive Director & Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
Bentonville, AR



IMage of Alison Brown, a white woman with short blond hair smiling broadly at the camera. Alison Brown
President & CEO, Science Museum of Minnesota
St. Paul, MN



Image of Carole Charnow, a white woman sitting in front of a wall with children's drawings wearing a dark suit jacket and striped shirt. Carole Charnow
President & CEO, Boston Children’s Museum
Boston, MA



A native man stands in front of a concrete wall wearing a Hawaiian style shirt. Kippen de Alba Chu  (AAM Board Chair)
Chief of Staff, Fort Worth Museum of Science and History
Fort Worth, TX



Image of Miki García, an Hispanic woman standing in front of a tiled wall. Miki García
Director, ASU Art Museum
Tempe, AZ


William Harris
CEO, Space Center Houston
Houston, TX


Image of Irene Hirano, an Asian woman standing in front of a mustard colored wall wearing a dark grey dress and pearls. Irene Hirano
President, U.S.-Japan Council
Former President and Founding CEO of the Japanese American National Museum
Los Angeles, CA and Washington, DC


Image of a white woman, Patricia Mooradian, standing in a gallery wearing a peach colored jacket with dark brown hair down to her shoulders. Patricia Mooradian
President, The Henry Ford
Dearborn, MI



Image of a white woman, Victoria Ramirez, with shoulder length dark brown hair wearing a bright blue top and smiling at the camera. Victoria Ramirez
Arkansas Arts Center
Little Rock, AR



Image of an Asian woman, Blinda Tate, with short dark hair wearing red wire rimmed glasses. Belinda Tate
Executive Director, Kalamazoo Institute of Arts
Kalamazoo, MI



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