The vision is to renew, reimagine, rebuild and rededicate the Memorial Centre as the W. E. B. Du Bois Museum Complex, implementing the conceptual design of Sir David Adjaye, the world famous Ghanaian architect who designed the Smithsonian Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, DC.
A dream team of leaders from the African continent and the United States—black and white—is dedicated to transforming this site into a world-class destination for scholars and heritage tourists alike, building on its status as a historical legacy project for Ghana’s 2019 Year of Return.
On September 27, 2019, the team met with President of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, in New York City during the annual meeting of the United Nations General Assembly to share the vision with him. The team was led by Daniel Rose, founder and CEO of the Helping Africa Foundation (HAF); Deborah Rose, president and visiting scholar at Harvard University’s FXB Center for Health & Human Rights; Japhet Aryiku, Ghanaian American executive director of HAF and retired vice president of JPMorgan Chase; and Professors Henry Louis Gates, Jr., of Harvard University and Kwame Anthony Appiah of New York University, both of whom are renowned scholars and guardians of the Du Bois legacy. President Akufo-Addo enthusiastically agreed with the vision, noting that it tied in perfectly with Ghana’s celebration of the Year of Return in 2019.
Professor Gates, who is intimately familiar with the works of Sir David Adjaye, contacted him on behalf of the team and commissioned him to start work on a design concept for Museum.
On December 5, 2019, the conceptual design was presented to President Akufo-Addo at Jubilee House in Accra and was enthusiastically received. The President then gave his approval for the project, directing his staff to complete a Memorandum of Understanding with the W. E. B. Du Bois Museum Foundation to begin work on the project. The MOU was signed by all parties in a ceremony in Accra on October 15, 2020.