HOUSTON, TX (April 11, 2012) – Holocaust Museum Houston has achieved accreditation from the American Association of Museums (AAM), the highest national recognition for a museum, the AAM announced today.
Accreditation signifies excellence to the museum community, to governments, funders, outside agencies and to the museum-going public. Of the nation’s estimated 17,500 museums, only four percent are currently accredited, and Holocaust Museum Houston becomes one of only four AAM-accredited museums in Houston, joining the Contemporary Arts Museum; the Museum of Natural Science; and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.
“Accreditation assures the people of Houston that Holocaust Museum Houston is among the finest in the nation,” said Ford W. Bell, president of AAM. “As a result, the citizens can take considerable pride in their homegrown institution, for its commitment to excellence and for the value it brings to the community.”
“During the accreditation process, we examined every facet of our organization, from the effectiveness of our educational outreach to the quality of our exhibitions, to our compliance with our mission and our stewardship of donor generosity. It is a process that was years in the making, but we are thrilled to be recognized as one of the leaders in our field,” said Museum Executive Director Susan Myers.
Founded in March 1996, Holocaust Museum Houston is dedicated to educating people about the Holocaust, remembering the 6 million Jews and other innocent victims and honoring the survivors' legacy. Using the lessons of the Holocaust and other genocides, the Museum teaches the dangers of hatred, prejudice and apathy.
The Museum challenges its visitors not just to remember the victims, but to understand that even a single individual can make a difference in today’s world so that such atrocities do not continue to be repeated, Myers said.
In addition to its permanent exhibit featuring a 1942 Holocaust-era railcar and a Danish rescue boat used to save more than 7,200 Jews from almost certain death, the museum offers changing exhibits and a variety of educational programs on-site and in schools throughout the year.
Accreditation is a rigorous process that examines all aspects of a museum’s operations. To earn accreditation, a museum first must conduct a self-study, and then undergo a site visit by a team of peer reviewers. AAM’s Accreditation Commission, an independent and autonomous body of museum professionals, reviews and evaluates the self-study and visiting committee report to determine whether a museum should receive accreditation. While the time to complete the process varies by museum, it generally takes at least three years.
The American Association of Museums has been bringing museums together since 1906, helping to develop standards and best practices, gathering and sharing knowledge, and providing advocacy on issues of concern to the entire museum community. With more than 15,000 individual, 3,000 institutional, and 300 corporate members, AAM is dedicated to ensuring that museums remain a vital part of the American landscape, connecting people with the greatest achievements of the human experience, past, present and future. For more information, visit www.aam-us.org.
Holocaust Museum Houston is dedicated to educating people about the Holocaust, remembering the 6 million Jews and other innocent victims and honoring the survivors' legacy. Using the lessons of the Holocaust and other genocides, the Museum teaches the dangers of hatred, prejudice and apathy.
Holocaust Museum Houston’s Morgan Family Center is free and open to the public and is located in Houston’s Museum District at 5401 Caroline St., Houston, TX 77004. For more information about the Museum, call 713-942-8000 or visit www.hmh.org.