Why the Change?
The change in our name and the programmatic changes represent the culmination of AAM's evolution over the past five years—a process that was formalized with the adoption of our 2009 strategic plan, The Spark. Through that process, we came to believe that "association" did not represent what we wanted to be as an organization, nor did it represent what the museum field needed us to be—an inclusive, collaborative organization prepared to work with museum professionals and volunteers, with those who do business with museums, and with those who just love museums.
We wanted to be a good partner with other museum-related organizations and to help unify the field on behalf of the cause of museums. "Alliance" describes the ideal role for this organization to play.
Having 18,000 members makes it difficult to secure broad input. However, the changes we have announced have been informed from the beginning by the individual member survey we conducted in 2010 that allowed us to gather an enormous amount of input from members. In addition, we had two meetings of representatives from the field regarding changes to the accreditation program.
We also carried out an extensive institutional member survey in 2011, soliciting wide input regarding membership, benefits, accreditation and the role of AAM. Based on what we learned, we implemented plans for substantial changes to the accreditation program, as well as substantial changes to the institutional membership structure.
In recent years, AAM had found it hard to keep up with rapid changes in our society, and with changing needs in the museum field. We have listened to what people wanted from us and listened, at length, to what they didn't like about us. Over five years, Alliance President Ford W. Bell has visited 42 states and attended endless museum meetings of every type and discipline. These conversations have informed the changes we have made.
Our New Logo
The logo, designed by Satori Engine, is rooted in a weave, knitted together as the Alliance feels museums of all types and sizes must be in order to to effectively communicate to stakeholders the value institutions bring to communities everywhere. These stakeholders include elected officials at all levels of government, policy makers, funders, the media and the public at large.