ARLINGTON, TX – (July 21, 2020) – The National Medal of Honor Museum (NMOHM) today announced Ken Burns, the award-winning American filmmaker, as its first National History Advisor. In this role, he will help guide the Museum’s efforts to properly preserve and compellingly present the history of the Medal of Honor and its more than 3,500 recipients.
“Ken Burns is a giant of American storytelling. His iconic, comprehensive and inspiring films have helped Americans understand where we’ve been and given context to where we hope to go. I can’t think of someone better to serve as National History Advisor as we seek to inspire all Americans by elevating the values the Medal of Honor represents and sharing the courageous stories of recipients who went above and beyond to defend our country,” said NMOHM President and CEO Joe Daniels.
“America’s success has never been guaranteed; it is always earned,” said Burns. “Generation after generation, the women and men of the U.S. Armed Forces have laid everything on the line for our country, especially the select few awarded the Medal of Honor. Connecting Americans young and old with their stories, and telling those stories in a way that allows us to learn from their examples of service and sacrifice, is an important responsibility. I’m thrilled to join the Museum and their mission.”
Burns’s documentaries have earned him two Academy Award nominations, two Grammy Awards and over a dozen Emmy Awards. His quintessential films explore events and cultural guideposts at the core of the American experience, including wars, music and sports. His films documenting wars include The Civil War, The War(World War II), The Vietnam War, and currently in production, The American Revolution. In 2008, Burns was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.
“Adding a powerhouse talent like Ken Burns to our team brings us one step closer to giving the Medal of Honor the recognition it deserves in American life,” said National Medal of Honor Museum Foundation Chairman of the Board Charlotte Jones. “Widely recognized as an authority on our nation’s character and history, he’ll help us build a greater understanding and appreciation for the bravest to have ever served.”
Burns joins the Museum team weeks after former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and businesswoman Dawn Arnall became the newest members of the Foundation board.