Oprah Winfrey is donating $12 million to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture, officials announced Tuesday. Combined with the $1 million she gave in 2007, it is the museum’s largest donation, and Winfrey’s name will go on a 350-seat theater in recognition. The chairwoman and chief executive of the Oprah Winfrey Network has been a member of the museum’s advisory council since 2004.
“I am so proud of African American history and its contributions to our nation as a whole,” Winfrey said in a statement. “I am deeply appreciative of those who paved the path for me and all who follow in their footsteps. By investing in this museum, I want to help ensure that we both honor and preserve our culture and history, so that the stories of who we are will live on for generations to come.”
“Every donation, whether $25 or a $10 million corporate donation, is important. But truly, there’s only one Oprah Winfrey,” says the museum’s founding director, Lonnie G. Bunch.
Granted Winfrey is a billionaire at this point, no one has to donate a dime to these causes and this is just another example of the countless good deeds and instance of generosity that Oprah Winfrey has displayed over the years. Hopefully I can come up with a good enough reason to ask for a cool million from her someday.