News & Events

FDR Memorial Legacy Committee Awarded $215K in Grants to Expand K-12 Education Programs

  • Aug - 24 - 2022


Funding Provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities and HumanitiesDC

WASHINGTON, D.C. (August 24, 2022) — The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) has awarded the FDR Memorial Legacy Committee (FDR Committee) a $190,000 grant to fund a professional development workshop for K-12 teachers in summer 2023. The workshop will explore FDR’s disability experience, the impact of disability on his leadership, and the epic campaign led by disabled Americans in the 1990s to ensure representation of disability at the FDR Memorial in Washington, DC.

Last week, the NEH announced $31.5 million in grants for 226 humanities projects across the country. “NEH is proud to support the many scholars, curators, storytellers, filmmakers, and teachers who are helping preserve, examine, and share the country’s rich and expansive history and culture,” said NEH Chair Shelly C. Lowe (Navajo).

As part of the grant, the FDR Committee will lead two – one-week trainings for teachers from around the United States.  Partnering with the FDR Committee in this work will be the University of the District of Columbia (UDC).  UDC and the FDR Committee have collaborated for the past two years in delivering teacher professional development workshops.  This grant will allow the workshop to expand and reach more educators. 

When the FDR Memorial was dedicated in 1997, it was missing a core element of what made FDR the great leader he was – disability. The wheelchair statue was added four years after the dedication, following an epic six-year campaign by disabled Americans. This fight for disability representation is an important bellwether in understanding the Disability Rights Movement and its direct linkage to the Civil Rights Movement.

“The story of the fight for the wheelchair statue is a story about representation, identity, and citizen action by the disabled community that needs to be shared with the next generation,” commented Mary E. Dolan, Co-Founder and Executive Director, FDR Committee.

In addition, the FDR Committee was awarded a $25,000 capacity building grant from HumanitiesDC to further expand the impact of its educational programming to Washington, DC K-12 educators.

To receive updates on educational opportunities from the FDR Memorial, please sign up here.

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About the FDR Memorial Legacy Committee

FDR Memorial Legacy Committee is a citizen-led organization with the mission to promote education about the FDR Memorial in Washington, DC, improve inclusion and accessibility so all visitors can experience the Memorial and preserve the Memorial for future generations.  The organization, borne out of the successful disability led campaign in the 1990s for disability representation at the Memorial, is committed to sharing the diverse perspectives of the Roosevelt era and that era's legacy today. Please visit for more information.

About the National Endowment for the Humanities

Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at:

About HumanitiesDC

HumanitiesDC is the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. With the support of the NEH, the DC City Council, and contributions from the private sector, HumanitiesDC works to fulfill its mission of enriching the quality of life, foster intellectual stimulation, and promote cross-cultural understanding and appreciation of local history in all neighborhoods of the District through humanities programs and grants.


Media Contact: Kelly Douglas,, 910-824-4624

NEH logo, round with blue circle with words National Endowment for the Humanities. Inside circle has an eagle with American flag.

Credit: The National Endowment for the Humanities: Democracy demands wisdom.