Panel Presentations in Washington, DC (Oct. 18/19, 2016)

2016 Smithsonian Affiliations Annual Conference
Opening Session: Saluting our Past, Shaping our Future
October 18, 2016 at the Rasmuson Theater, National Museum of the American Indian

  • Moderated by Harold A. Closter, Director, Smithsonian Affiliations
  • Devon Akmon, Director, Arab American National Museum
  • Sarah Holbrooke, Executive Director, The Pinhead Institute
  • Allyson Nakamoto, Director of Education, Japanese American National Museum
  • Jose Santamaria, Executive Director, Tellus Science Museum

Affiliate partnerships can be enriching and occasionally transforming. What have we learned from 20 years of experimentation and collaboration, and what do we envision for the future? Four Smithsonian colleagues offer their keynote insights into the power of partnership and the ways in which working together has benefitted their organization and community, while helping the Smithsonian fulfill its national outreach mission.


Middle East Institute and the Institute for Immigration Research (IIR) at George Mason University

The Art of Immigration: How Immigrant Artists Enrich America
October 19, 2016 at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

  • Moderated by Monica Gomez-Isaac, Executive Director at the Institute for Immigration Research (IIR), George Mason University
  • Devon Akmon, Director, Arab American National Museum
  • Huda Asfour, Musician & Composer and Co-Founder of the DC Palestinian Film and Arts Festival
  • Anne-Marie McGranghan, Resettlement Officer, UNHCR
  • James Witte, Director, Center for Social Science Research (CSSR) and Research Director, Institute for Immigration Research (IIR), George Mason University

A discussion about the social, cultural, and economic impact of immigrant artists on U.S. society, the infrastructure available to support the integration of immigrant artists, and the personal transformations they undergo as they adapt to their new homeland.

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