The American Alliance of Museums (AAM), the only organization representing the entire scope of the museum community, today announced 22 museums & gardens were reaccredited, and one received its first-time accreditation, at the June 2018 meeting of the Accreditation Commission.

Through a rigorous process of self-assessment and review by their peers, these museums have demonstrated they meet standards and professional practices, and have shown themselves to be core educational entities that are good stewards of the collections and resources they hold in the public trust.

As the ultimate mark of distinction in the museum field, accreditation signifies excellence and credibility to the entire museum community, to governments and outside agencies, and to the museum-going public. Developed and sustained by museum professionals for almost 50 years, the museum accreditation program is the field’s primary vehicle for quality assurance, self-regulation, and public accountability. Accreditation helps to ensure the integrity and accessibility of museum collections, reinforce the educational and public service roles of museums, and promote good governance practices and ethical behavior.

The following museums & gardens were awarded accreditation. American Public Gardens Association members are in bold:

  • Academy Art Museum, Easton, MD
  • Allentown Art Museum, Allentown, PA
  • Clay Center for the Arts & Sciences of West Virginia, Charleston, WV
  • Descanso Gardens, La Cañada Flintridge, CA
  • Fairfax County Park Authority Resource Management Division
    • Colvin Run Mill, Great Falls, VA
    • Frying Pan Farm Park, Herndon, VA
    • Green Spring Gardens Park, Alexandria, VA
    • Sully Historic Site, Chantilly, VA
  • Fernbank Museum of Natural History, Atlanta, GA
  • Gaston County Museum of Art & History, Dallas, NC
  • Henry Art Gallery – University of Washington, Seattle, WA
  • The Hershey Story: The Museum on Chocolate Avenue, Hershey, PA
  • Museum of Discovery: Arkansas’ Museum of Science and History, Little Rock, AR
  • Plains Art Museum, Fargo, ND
  • Riverside Metropolitan Museum, Riverside, CA
  • Silas Wright House, St. Lawrence County Historical Association, Canton, NY
  • St. Mary’s County Museum Division
    • Clements Island Museum, Colton’s Point, MD
    • Piney Point Lighthouse Museum & Historic Park, Piney Point, MD
    • U-1105 Black Panther Historic Shipwreck Preserve, Piney Point, MD
    • Drayden African American School House, Drayden, MD
  • Tower Hill Botanic Garden, Worcester County Horticultural Society, Boylston, MA

“I commend the staff, board and volunteers of these institutions for their focus and commitment to excellence,” said Accreditation Commission Chair Amy Bartow-Melia. “They’re an inspiration to our field and vital assets to the communities they serve.”

Of the nation’s estimated 33,000 museums, 1,070 are currently accredited. To earn accreditation, a museum submits a self-study questionnaire and key operational documents for evaluation, then undergoes a site visit by a two-person team of peer reviewers. The Accreditation Commission considers these results to determine whether a museum should receive accreditation.

For more information about the Alliance and the Accreditation Program, visit