CAM was founded in 1979 by museum leaders interested in advocating for the California museum field – a theme that continues to this day. We have an active advocacy program that monitors legislation, keeps our members and constituents informed, and supports strategic initiatives that benefit the museum field.

In close coordination with our Sacramento-based lobbyist, our Government Relations Committee monitors legislation and appropriations, takes positions on key bills, attends hearings, and meets with elected officials to voice our support or opposition. We also periodically issue policy statements to California legislators to inform them of the vital role museums play in California communities.
For nearly two decades, we have organized advocacy events or programs, depending on the needs and circumstances of the year. In 2019 and 2020, CAM was a partner of the Arts, Culture, and Creativity Advocacy Day organized by Californians for the Arts.

We often partner with state agencies and national associations to achieve shared goals. The Superintendent's Award for Excellence in Museum Education is co-sponsored with the California Department of Education. We also partner with the Natural Resources Agency on an awards program that recognizes excellence in sustainability. For over a decade, CAM has been a partner and supporter of the American Alliance of Museums' Museums Advocacy Day in Washington, D.C. 

Interested in learning more about our advocacy work? Download our Guiding Principles for Advocacy and Legislative Involvement Framework.