VERMILLION, S.D. -- James W. Abbott, president of the University of South Dakota, has been elected chairman of the Newseum Institute board of trustees, a forum for educational programs and leadership initiatives championing the five freedoms of the First Amendment: speech, press, religion, assembly and petition. Through educational classes and programs, the Newseum Institute strives to educate young people about our First Amendment liberties. In his role as chairman, Abbott also will serve on the Newseum Institute’s executive committee.
Abbott has been a member of the Newseum Institute board of trustees since July 2003 and was elected to the board of the Freedom Forum in December 2012. The Freedom Forum, which helps fund the Newseum on Pennsylvania Avenue in downtown Washington, D.C., is one of the nation’s leading foundations dedicated to the First Amendment and media issues. Abbott succeeds Robert Khayat, former chancellor of the University of Mississippi, as chairman. Khayat has taken emeritus status on the board.
The mission of the Newseum is to champion the five freedoms of the First Amendment through education, information and entertainment. One of the top attractions in Washington, D.C., the Newseum’s 250,000-square-foot news museum offers visitors a state-of-the-art experience that blends news history with up-to-the-second technology and hands-on exhibits. The Newseum Institute serves as a forum for First Amendment study, exploration and education. The Newseum is a 501(c)(3) public charity funded by generous individuals, corporations and foundations, including the Freedom Forum.