U.S. Marshals Museum raises $500,000 to meet match; Foundation president to depart

by Tina Alvey Dale ([email protected]) 2,181 views 

A view of the U.S. Marshals Museum in downtown Fort Smith.

The U.S. Marshals Museum in Fort Smith announced Wednesday (Nov. 11) it has met, and exceeded, the $500,000 anonymous matching donation given to the project in April, allowing the institution to raise $1 million during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Alice Alt, president of the U.S. Marshals Museum Foundation, also announced she is leaving the organization.

“It speaks volumes of our local, regional, and national donors to have helped the Museum reach the $500,000 match by giving to this project, and in turn, continue to support the mission and vision”, said Foundation Chair Robert A. Young III. “That mission and vision is education, discourse, impact and experience.”

With the help of this gift, the team at the Museum believe they are good financially for 2021.

“As we prepare for what we are hoping will be a banner 2021, the team has launched an End of Year Giving campaign on the heels of meeting the $500,000 match to keep the momentum and excitement going,” Alt said.

The End of Year Giving Campaign will continue through December, and the Museum hopes to secure the remaining $12.8 million left in their capital campaign. Of that $12.8 million, the Marshals Museum is focusing on $8 million, which will allow the experience inside the Museum (galleries, interactives and exhibits) to be built. Alt said they hoped to be able to raise the $8 million in time to start construction of the museum experience in 2021.

Construction of the new U.S. Marshals Museum in Fort Smith was completed – except for exhibits – early this year, and museum staff has moved offices to the new facility. Alt said staff hopes to have a soft opening at the end of 2021 with a grand opening in 2022.

Alt will leave the foundation around July 2021 to move to Louisville, Ky., where her husband has taken a job. She said the foundation hopes to hire a new president around January, which will allow her to work with them for several months before leaving. Alt was named president of the foundation in June 2019 when Jim Dunn retired.

She said she is going to miss Fort Smith but is looking forward to spending the next nine months raising the money needed to open the museum.