Made by five siblings in memory of their father, who founded Fortune 500 company Molina Healthcare, Inc. in California, the gift will support the Smithsonian Latino Center's first gallery space. A planned inaugural exhibition, "Making Home: Latino Stories of Community and Belonging," will examine the historical roots of Latino culture as it shaped the continent and the United States.
In addition to exhibitions, the center will offer flexible education and public programming as well as immersive digital experiences, while its mobile site will provide access to audiences nationwide. The new gallery space, to be named the Molina Family Latino Gallery in recognition of the gift, also is supported by a $2 million gift from its first corporate funder, Target.
"It is a great privilege to make this gift in memory of our father," said Martha Molina Bernadett, acknowledging her siblings, Mario, John, Janet, and Josephine. "His passion for helping others and entrepreneurial spirit helped build a legacy that we are all proud to contribute to today."
"We're thrilled to finally be realizing the dream of having a Latino gallery at the Smithsonian, but we recognize that our job continues outside of the museum's walls," said Smithsonian Latino Center director Eduardo Díaz. "Latino history is American history, and we have a responsibility to reflect the stories and experiences of Latinas and Latinos in the U.S. today. We'll continue to do that not only through this future gallery, but also through our diverse programmatic, educational and professional development programs, as well as our work to unlock and increase access to Latino content across the institution."