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Achievement and Heritage Awards

Monday, December 4, 2023

Honoring Smithsonian Secretary Lonnie G. Bunch III

On December 4, 2023, the National Archives Foundation honored American educator and historian Lonnie G. Bunch III with the prestigious Records of Achievement Award. Bunch, now Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, was recognized for his commitment to preserving and chronicling our history, and for his dedication to amplifying the history and the stories of African Americans. The event was held at the National Archives in Washington, DC with Mr. Bunch, who was interviewed by renowned author, journalist, and radio host Michele Norris.

View photos from the evening here.

The Records of Achievement Award is the highest honor bestowed by the National Archives Foundation to an individual whose contributions have fostered a broader national awareness of the history and heritage of the United States as exemplified in the National Archives’ records.

Highlights of the celebration included a cocktail hour; theater program and award presentation; a seated dinner in the Rotunda and Rotunda Galleries – just steps away from the Declaration of Independence, U.S. Constitution, and Bill of Rights; and a dessert reception.

Michele Norris interview of Lonnie Bunch 

Lonnie Bunch Tribute Video 

The 2023 Records of Achievement Award Ceremony and Gala was made possible in part by Anonymous, Bank of America, Governor Jim and Janet Blanchard, Brown Advisory, Anne S. Chao, The Daschle Group, DLA Piper LLP (US), Ambassador Fay Hartog-Levin (Ret.), Marilynn and John Hill, Cameron F. Kerry, Jacqueline B. Mars, Karen Pritzker, David M. Rubenstein, Lucinda Robb, The Salemme/Welch Family, The Honorable Rodney E. Slater, Verizon, and Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP.

For more information about the 2023 Records of Achievement Award and Gala, email Margaret.Tompkins@archivesfoundation.org.

Past Recipients of the Records of Achievement and Heritage Awards:

Heritage Award

The Heritage Award takes its name from the “Heritage” sculpture outside the National Archives Building and recognizes individuals, corporations, and organizations whose deeds are consistent with the Foundation’s mission of educating, enriching, and inspiring a deeper appreciation of our country’s heritage. The Foundation’s Heritage Award was presented in 2012 to philanthropist Jacqueline B. Mars.