Jam Ramirez. Photo by Chester Higgins Jr. for The New York Times.
Jan Ramirez has served as chief curator and director of collections for the National September 11 Memorial & Museum in New York City since 2006. In that role, she has immersed herself in the personal stories of nearly 3,000 victims and a wide range of objects, sounds and images that define the experience of that day and its aftermath. Previously she was vice president and director of the New York Historical Society's museum, where soon after the 9/11 attacks she launched the series History Responds, which included exhibitions, public events and educational initiatives. In 2004, Ramirez served on the World Trade Center Memorial Center Advisory Committee that drafted plans for a museum to complement the 9/11 Memorial at the World Trade Center site. Prior to her 9/11-related work, Ramirez held curatorial and research positions at the Museum of the City of New York, the Hudson River Museum of Westchester, and the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.
In October 2011, The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage's hosted a lecture and discussion with Ramirez, at which she spoke about the interpretive planning process for the National September 11 Memorial & Museum. Her talk focused on how museum staff has made difficult curatorial choices while maintaining broad historical context, while still being aware of the cultural impact the museum would have in the present.