Follow-up Statement to News Media About the Groundbreaking for Smithsonian’s National Museum of African History and Culture

February 22, 2012
News Release

The plan for the groundbreaking ceremony did not call for President Barack Obama to participate in the actual shoveling of dirt. It was intended for members of the Smithsonian family—senior staff and members of the museum’s council. Former First Lady Laura Bush joined the groundbreaking as she is a member of the museum’s advisory council. Groundbreakers were:

  • Richard Parsons, co-chair, museum council

  • Patty Stonesifer, Smithsonian Board of Regents member and former chair

  • Laura Bush, former First Lady

  • Wayne Clough, Secretary, Smithsonian Institution

  • Lonnie Bunch, director, National Museum of African American History and Culture

  • Richard Kurin, Under Secretary for History, Art and Culture, Smithsonian

  • France Córdova, chair, Smithsonian Board of Regents

  • Linda Johnson Rice, co-chair, museum council

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SI-93-2012