Smithsonian Institution, Asian Pacific American Program

Member since Jan 2005

Mission Statement


The Smithsonian Institution, the nation’s premier complex of museums, has embarked on an historic journey to incorporate the meaningful elements of Asian Pacific American (APA) heritages into its museum and offices. In 1997, the Smithsonian established an advisory group headed by the Hon. Norman Y. Mineta with a mandate to research, deliberate, and then report on the Institution’s ability to “increase and diffuse knowledge” about the nation’s richly diverse APA communities. The Asian Pacific American National Advisory Group’s final report called for the creation of a program for Asian Pacific American Studies. This central program would provide vision, leadership, and support for all APA activities at the Smithsonian, while serving as a liaison to APA communities.

Today the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program works to improve the APA presence in Smithsonian exhibitions, programs, and research. It therefore strengthens the public’s appreciation of the crucial roles that Asian Pacific Americans have played in American history and, simultaneously, empowers APA communities in their sense of inclusion within our national culture. Dr. Franklin Odo is the Director of the Program.

Participating with the Nikkei Legacy Project will allow us to demonstrate the importance of Japanese American experiences in the Nation's premier museum complex. We will provide resources to all interested units within the Smithsonian Institution. At the same time, our efforts will strengthen the Japanese American National Museum's project dealing with Nikkei in the hemisphere by conducting a collections survey of Nikkei holdings in the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the National Museum of American History, and other Smithsonian branches that may hold Nikkei collections. We will also provide a lesson plan on a Japanese American topic.


Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program
A&I, Room 2467, MRC: 440, PO Box 37012
Washington, DC 10023-7012

Phone: 202-786-2409


Staff of the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program.

Windstorm at Manzanar, A More Perfect Union

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A project of the Japanese American National Museum

Major support by The Nippon Foundation