"Commemoration Reconsidered" - Day 2 / Panel 3 - "Envisioning the Future: Designing a Meaningful 2026"

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The third panel of the Virtual Summit invites attendees to join the speakers in looking ahead to imagine the future of commemoration. The panelists will explore topics such as the potential legacy of the 250th anniversary, possible coming trends in commemoration, and ways to engage future generations in commemorative efforts.

Jimmy Sweet (Lakota/Dakota)

Assistant Professor, Rutgers University

Jimmy Sweet (Lakota/Dakota) is an Assistant Professor in American Studies at Rutgers University. Sweet received his Ph.D. in history from the University of Minnesota and served as a managing editor of NAIS: The Journal of the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association from 2012 to 2017. Before joining the faculty at Rutgers he was the Henry Roe Cloud Postdoctoral Fellow at Yale University. His book project excavates the legal and racial complexities in the experiences of Native Americans of mixed-ancestry as they navigated both the Indigenous world and the American state.

Judy Tzu-Chun Wu

Associate Dean of Research, Faculty Development, and Public Engagement, School of Humanities, University of California, Irvine

Judy Tzu-Chun Wu is a professor of History and Asian American Studies at the University of California, Irvine. She also serves as faculty director of the Humanities Center and Associate Dean in the School of Humanities of Research, Faculty Development, and Public Engagement. She is the inaugural director of the Center for Liberation, Anti-Racism, and Belonging (C-LAB). 

She received her Ph.D. in U.S. History from Stanford University and previously taught at Ohio State University. She authored Dr. Mom Chung of the Fair-Haired Bastards: the Life of a Wartime Celebrity (University of California Press, 2005) and Radicals on the Road: Internationalism, Orientalism, and Feminism during the Vietnam Era (Cornell University Press,2013). Her book, Fierce and Fearless: Patsy Takemoto Mink, First Woman of Color in Congress (New York University Press, 2022), is a collaboration with political scientist Gwendolyn Mink. 

Jorge Zamanillo

Director, Smithsonian National Museum of the American Latino

Jorge Zamanillo is the founding director of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Latino. The new museum was established by Congress in December 2020. In legislation establishing the museum within the Smithsonian, Congress stated the purposes of the museum are “to illuminate the story of the United States for the benefit of all by featuring Latino contributions to the art, history and culture of the nation since its early history.”

Previously, Zamanillo was the executive director and CEO of HistoryMiami Museum. He began working at the museum in Miami in 2000 as the curator of object collections and, over time, organized several key exhibitions and programs, including renovating the museum’s permanent exhibition. Before he was promoted to executive director and CEO, he served in several leadership positions at HistoryMiami— including deputy director, vice president of expansion projects and senior curator.

As executive director and CEO of HistoryMiami, Zamanillo managed the daily operations of a museum with a $6.2 million budget. He also led a $45 million expansion project (2015–2016) that added and renovated a new museum building, more than doubling the size of the museum, and created four additional exhibition galleries.

Zamanillo helped transform HistoryMiami into an indispensable and vibrant community-based museum through exhibitions and programs that reflect the diverse communities of South Florida. Under his direction, the museum expanded the South Florida Folklife Center, dedicated to documenting, presenting and supporting the region’s traditional arts and culture, and it added a dedicated permanent folklife gallery.
Before joining HistoryMiami Museum, Zamanillo was an archaeologist at the non-profit cultural resource management firm Archaeological and Historical Conservancy Inc. in Miami. He currently serves as the vice chair and board member of the American Alliance of Museums.

Born in New York City, Zamanillo grew up in Miami and earned a bachelor’s degree in anthropology at Florida State University in Tallahassee and his master’s in museum studies at the University of Leicester in Leicester, England.

Caroline Klibanoff (Moderator)

Director, Made By Us

Smithsonian National Museum of American History

Caroline Klibanoff is the director of Made By Us, a nationwide collaboration of history organizations, museums and historic sites informing and igniting Gen Z civic participation for the nation’s 250th anniversary in 2026. Previously, she project managed exhibitions for MIT Museum’s new campus, and has worked in digital strategy for Big Tent Nation and the Bridge Alliance, developing the Civvys Awards and rolling out the inaugural National Week of Conversation. She began her career in strategic communications at the Pew Research Center and the Frameworks Institute, and has worked for cultural organizations including Longfellow House – George Washington’s Headquarters National Historic Site; Northern Light Productions; the Cambridge Historical Society; and Northeastern University’s Digital Scholarship Group. She holds a B.A. in American Studies and Film and Media Studies from Georgetown University, and an M.A. in Public History and Digital Humanities from Northeastern University.

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