The California Museum opened on Sept. 9, 1998 through a unique
partnership with the State of California as a private non-profit
institution focused on California history and culture. Under the
development of the Secretary of State’s office, the Museum was
created to be the public showplace for contents of the the
California State Archives.
In 2003, former First Lady Maria Shriver began working with the
Museum to expand its vision and mission. In 2004, “California’s
Remarkable Women” opened as the first of her many collaborative
efforts with the Museum. Since then, the Museum’s exhibitions
have continued to emphasize stories not presented to reflect all
aspects of California’s diverse population and culture,
with an emphasis on the contributions of women and
In 2006, former First Lady Maria Shriver and Governor Arnold
Schwarzenegger became Honorary Co-Chairs of the Museum and
co-designed the California Hall of Fame as the Museum’s annual
gala and an official award from the Governor of California.
In 2011 after the change of administration, Governor Edmund G.
Brown, Jr. and First Lady Anne Gust Brown became Honorary
Co-Chairs of The California Museum and the California Hall of
Fame. As active leaders, the Governor and First Lady continue to
work with the Museum in the selection of California Hall of Fame
inductees and bring their appreciation of California history and
the educational mission of the Museum to their honorary position.