HARTFORD, Conn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Hartford announced its founding sponsorship of the Smithsonian’s newest museum, the National Museum of African American History and Culture, NMAAHC. The company made a $1 million contribution over five years to support the design and construction of the building, scheduled to open Sept. 24 in Washington D.C.
“The Hartford has been a part of American history for more than 200 years, growing, thriving and changing along with our nation,” said Susan Johnson, head of diversity and inclusion at The Hartford. “We are proud to be a founding sponsor of the National Museum of African American History and Culture and celebrate the important contributions of African Americans to the American Dream.”
The Smithsonian broke ground Feb. 22, 2012, on the NMAAHC at a five-acre site on Constitution Avenue between 14th and 15th streets N.W. The 400,000-square-foot building has five levels above ground and four below. It will have exhibition galleries, an education center, a theater, café and store as well as staff offices. When it opens, NMAAHC will feature more than 34,000 artifacts the museum has collected since it was established by legislation in 2003.
“I am honored and humbled to have The Hartford as a founding sponsor,” said Lonnie G. Bunch III, the museum’s founding director. “In just under eight months, after more than a decade of hard work and dedication on the part of so many, we will open the doors of the museum and let visitors see that it is a place for all people. We have created exhibitions and programs designed to unite and capture the attention of millions of people worldwide. It will be a place for healing and reconciliation, a place where everyone can explore the story of America through the lens of the African American experience.”
The Hartford has a long history of supporting diversity in the workplace and the community. Its eight employee resource groups, including The Hartford’s Black Insurance Professionals Network founded in 1999, are a key component of the company’s diversity and inclusion strategy.
Johnson added, “Ensuring that The Hartford’s workforce mirrors our marketplace and communities is core to our business strategy so we can continue to meet the evolving needs of our diverse customers.”
Keynote Speaker and Panel Discussion at The Hartford’s Wallace Stevens Theater
John Franklin, director of Partnerships and International Programs for the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, will deliver a keynote address, “A Monumental Project and Partnership,” to The Hartford’s employees and local community leaders.
A panel discussion on “The Importance of Celebrating Our History” will follow Franklin’s remarks. Moderated by Katherine Kane, executive director of the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center, the panel will include:
- John W. Franklin, director of Partnerships and International Programs, Smithsonian NMAAHC
- H. Patrick Swygert, a member of The Hartford’s board of directors; Advisory Council member of NMAAHC; president emeritus of Howard University
- Dr. Shayla C. Nunnally, associate professor, Department of Political Science & Africana Studies Institute at University of Connecticut
About the Smithsonian
The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture broke ground in February 2012 on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. The 400,000-square-foot building is being built on a five-acre tract adjacent to the Washington Monument at a cost of $540 million. While construction is moving forward, the museum is hosting public programs, organizing traveling exhibitions and producing books and recordings. Its eighth exhibition, “Through the African American Lens: Selections from the Permanent Collection,” is on view in the museum’s temporary gallery at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. For more information, visit nmaahc.si.edu.
About The Hartford
With more than 200 years of expertise, The Hartford (NYSE: HIG) is a leader in property and casualty insurance, group benefits and mutual funds. The company is widely recognized for its service excellence, sustainability practices, trust and integrity. More information on the company and its financial performance is available at www.thehartford.com. Join us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TheHartford. Follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/TheHartford.
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