Join philanthropy and education thought leaders and Smithsonian historians at the fifth annual Power of Giving symposium bringing historic perspectives to contemporary conversations about educational equity and the role of philanthropy.
Day 1 of this virtual National Museum of American History program features a conversation with Smithsonian Secretary Lonnie G. Bunch III and the museum’s David M. Rubenstein Curator of Philanthropy, Dr. Amanda B. Moniz, about the history of African American educational philanthropy in the United States.
Next, a keynote by education policy leader Dr. Linda Darling-Hammond, president and CEO of the Learning Policy Institute, focuses on philanthropic opportunities to address inequity in moments of social upheaval.
A panel from funders’ perspectives led by philanthropist and former teacher Liz Simons closes the day with participants Bob Hughes, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s director of K-12 Education, Dr. Na’ilah Suad Nasir, president of the Spencer Foundation, and Dr. Darling-Hammond.
About the Speakers (in order of appearance)
Dr. Anthea M. Hartig
Elizabeth MacMillan Director
National Museum of American History
Dr. Anthea M. Hartig is the Elizabeth MacMillan Director of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. She began her tenure in 2019 as the first woman to hold the position since the museum’s opening in 1964. Hartig oversees more than 250 employees, a budget of over $40 million, and a collection that includes 1.8 million objects and more than three shelf-miles of archives. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Hartig has put in place two task forces: one on collecting around the current crisis and the other a digital response team to create new content, particularly in the area of K-12 education. An award-winning public historian and cultural heritage expert, Hartig is dedicated to making the nation’s richly diverse history accessible and relevant. She is currently leading the museum in crafting a vibrant new strategic plan. In commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment’s ratification granting women the right to vote, the museum presented new exhibitions in 2020 that are powerful contributors to the Smithsonian American Women’s History Initiative, including “Creating Icons: How We Remember Woman Suffrage” and “Girlhood (It’s Complicated).” Hartig was previously executive director and CEO of the California Historical Society.
Lonnie G. Bunch III
Lonnie G. Bunch III is the14th Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, the world’s largest museum complex. Prior to assuming this position in June 2019, Bunch was the founding director of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture. In this position he provided strategic leadership in areas of fundraising, collections, and academic and cultural partnerships. As a public historian, Bunch has spent nearly 30 years in the museum field and is one of the nation’s leading figures in the historical and museum community. Bunch previously served as the president of the Chicago Historical Society. Bunch has held several positions at the Smithsonian, and spent a number of years at both the National Museum of American History and the National Air and Space Museum. A prolific and widely published author, Bunch has written on topics ranging from slavery, the Black military experience, the American presidency, and all Black towns in the American west to diversity in museum management and the impact of funding and politics on American museums. Born in the Newark, NJ area, Bunch has held numerous teaching positions across the country.
Dr. Amanda B. Moniz
David M. Rubenstein Curator of Philanthropy
National Museum of American History
Dr. Amanda B. Moniz is the David M. Rubenstein M. Curator of Philanthropy at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. Moniz’s first book, From Empire to Humanity: The American Revolution and the Origins of Humanitarianism (2016), was awarded the Association of Voluntary Action Scholars (ARNOVA) inaugural Peter Dobkin Hall History of Philanthropy Book Prize. She is now working on a biography of Isabella Graham, a transformational philanthropist in the early United States, as well as on a book tentatively entitled Philanthropy’s Usable Past: Ten Stories about Changing the World Today. A focal interest of hers is how wars have shaped American philanthropy, and a major current project of hers is the new War and Latina/o Philanthropy Collecting Initiative. Moniz is a visiting faculty member at the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.
Dr. Linda Darling-Hammond
President and CEO
Learning Policy Institute
Charles E. Ducommun Professor of Education Emeritus
Dr. Linda Darling-Hammond is the Charles E. Ducommun Professor of Education Emeritus at Stanford University and President and CEO of the Learning Policy Institute. She has conducted extensive research on issues of educator supply, demand, and quality. Among her award-winning publications in this area are What Matters Most: Teaching for America’s Future (1996); Teaching as the Learning Profession (1999); and Preparing Teachers for a Changing World: What Teachers Should Learn and be Able to Do (2005). She was executive director of the National Commission on Teaching and America’s Future and director of RAND Corporation’s education program. Darling-Hammond began her career as a public school teacher.
Liz Simons is chair of the Board of the Heising-Simons Foundation. A former teacher, she worked in Spanish-bilingual and English as a Second Language (ESL) classrooms, and subsequently founded Stretch to Kindergarten, a spring-summer early childhood education program. Simons currently serves on the advisory council for Stanford University’s Graduate School of Education, and on the advisory board of the Stanford Center for Philanthropy and Civil Society, as well as on several boards including The Marshall Project, The Foundation for a Just Society, Math for America, Smart Justice California and the Learning Policy Institute. She volunteers at The Beat Within (a magazine by and for incarcerated youth) and as a storyteller in a transitional kindergarten class. She and her husband Mark Heising are signatories of the Giving Pledge.
Director of K-12 Education in the United States Program
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Bob Hughes is director of K-12 Education in the United States Program of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation where he oversees its work to ensure that it prepares all students for success in college and career. Before joining the foundation, Hughes was president of New Visions for Public Schools, a New York City school network of 70 district schools serving approximately 45,000 students. During his tenure, New Visions created 99 district and seven charter public schools, provided mentoring services to hundreds of new principals, developed school-based certification programs for teachers and principals, secondary curricula now accessed by thousands of teachers, and data management tools to streamline school operations and track student progress toward graduation and college. Hughes has also led or been involved in individual and class action litigation in special education and state school finance. He started his career providing legal representation to homeless parents and students in the New York City public school system and worked extensively with community organizers around education issues. Prior board affiliations include the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, Advocates for Children of New York, Fund For Teachers, and Projects in Education, the nonprofit publisher of Education Week.
Dr. Na’ilah Suad Nasir
Dr. Na'ilah Suad Nasir is the sixth president of the Spencer Foundation which invests in education research that cultivates learning and transforms lives. She held a faculty appointment at the University of California, Berkeley from 2008–2019, where she also served as Vice-Chancellor of Equity and Inclusion. Nasir earned her PhD in Education Psychology at UCLA and was a member of the faculty in the School of Education at Stanford University. Her work focuses on issues of race, culture, learning, and identity. She is the author of Racialized Identities: Race and Achievement for African-American Youth (2012) and has published numerous scholarly articles. Nasir is a member of the National Academy of Education and a fellow of the American Educational Research Association (AERA).