Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center Receives $2 Million Grant

Ford Foundation Grant Is the Largest in the Center’s History
December 16, 2015
News Release

The Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center announced that it has received a $2 million grant from the Ford Foundation to support the Center’s strategic plan to become an innovative national resource for learning about Asian Pacific American history, art and culture. The Ford Foundation grant will provide core support for staffing, institutional partnerships, community outreach and “culture labs”—experimental and traditional pop-up exhibitions and digital activities.

“We are inspired by the Ford Foundation’s forward-thinking leadership and humbled by its generous support,” said Konrad Ng, the center’s director. “This is a transformative grant for Asian Pacific America. It will support creative initiatives that will foster a deeper and more complex understanding of the Asian Pacific American experience in ways that are designed to expand what a national museum experience can be, digitally and in person.”

“Konrad Ng and APAC’s leaders have envisioned fresh and innovative platforms for highlighting the rich culture and heritage of Asian Pacific Americans, in ways that turn the museum experience inside out,” said Elizabeth Alexander, director of Creativity and Free Expression at the Ford Foundation. “This work embodies the Ford Foundation’s commitment to lifting up diverse voices—through community engagement in local neighborhoods to digital engagement across the globe and around the world. We are proud to be a partner in this work.”

With this grant, the Center will exceed its Smithsonian Capital Campaign goal of $3 million by nearly 30 percent.

About the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center

The Asian Pacific American Center was established in 1997 as a Smithsonian-wide initiative critical to the mission of the Smithsonian to enrich the appreciation of America’s Asian Pacific heritage and empower Asian Pacific American communities in their sense of inclusion within the national culture. For more information, visit

About the Ford Foundation

The Ford Foundation is an independent, nonprofit grant-making organization. For more than 75 years, it has worked with courageous people on the frontlines of social change worldwide, guided by its mission to strengthen democratic values, reduce poverty and injustice, promote international cooperation and advance human achievement. With headquarters in New York, the foundation has offices in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East and Asia.

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