Washington, D.C. – Friends of the National Museum of the American Latino (FRIENDS) celebrates the Smithsonian Institution’s statement this morning announcing that it will prioritize four locations for the future National Museum of the American Latino and the National Women’s History Museum. Those locations include the Arts and Industries Building, the Northwest Capitol site, the South Monument site, and the Tidal Basin site. This announcement is a clear statement on the significance of these museums to our American history, and highlights the importance of placing them front and center, shoulder-to-shoulder with all of the other significant museums on the National Mall. 

“FRIENDS applauds and is grateful to the Smithsonian Institution, Secretary Lonnie Bunch, Director Jorge Zamanillo, the Board of Trustees, and the entire leadership team for prioritizing the recommendations of the National Museum of the American Latino Commission 2011 report,” said FRIENDS President & CEO Estuardo Rodriguez. “Choosing a location for this spectacular museum is a momentous decision, which is why we remain committed to working in a unified and collaborative manner in support of the Smithsonian to ensure that a pathway is clear for each of these identified locations.” 

The locations announced include three of the priority locations recommended by the National Museum of the American Latino Commission in their 2011 report. Each one of these locations, apart from the Arts and Industries Building, will require action by Congress and/or federal agencies with jurisdiction. 

“The work for the community, public officials, and corporate leaders is clear. Now, more than ever, is the time to form a collective effort to elevate the importance of the four sites, offer support to the Smithsonian in its work to secure the best locations, and ensure the sites are available to the Smithsonian for both museums,” said Lili Gil Valletta, FRIENDS Board Chair. “FRIENDS remains committed to ensuring the White House, Congress, and related federal agencies, do everything in their power to build the National Museum of the American Latino, along with the National Women’s History Museum, on the National Mall.”