CEO Update March 8, 2021

Surface Navy Museum at the Battleship IOWA Family:
Today, we celebrate International Women’s Day. I can say without a doubt that our organization and ship wouldn’t be where it is today without the incredible contributions of our women crewmembers. We have come a long way in nine short years, with women playing a critical role, and they’ll continue to do so as we move into the future of the National Museum of the Surface Navy at the Battleship IOWA. 

I couldn’t be prouder of the contributions women leaders provide to our organization daily and there is no doubt that we are better for it. Thank you to each of you for being part of the team and crew!


Meet some of the ladies of the IOWA in this video.





Over the past week, we have continued to see a slow increase in traffic. We maintained strong weekend numbers, but weekdays continue to be weak. Here in Los Angeles, roads and freeways have had a noticeable increase in traffic.


Late last week it was announced that the state would allow major theme and sports parks to reopen in the next tier, with limited capacity. We suspect that in the coming weeks, more activities and museums will be permitted as cases continue to drop  As this ease occurs, we will be reopening the interior of the ship, guided tours, and additional programs. Stay tuned for more updates.



It is incredible to think that this Friday will be one year since we closed due to the pandemic. As I look back at the message that I sent on Friday the 13th of March, 2020, we were preparing to react appropriately, yet we didn’t know that a year later we would still be dealing with the effects. The Covid-19 pandemic has changed the way each of us lives and does business. We are a different changed organization, yet well positioned for our growth as a National Museum. The pandemic brought us all together to ensure that the Battleship IOWA and the National Museum of the Surface Navy remain strong well into the future. Thank you for your contributions!


Throughout the past year, we have adjusted the operation to be more efficient and continued to execute on the strategy to become a national museum. Volunteers and staff have stepped up to the plate to take on more responsibility and fulfill the organization’s needs. I am excited about what we have on deck in 2021 with the Surface Navy Museum capital campaign, Vicky’s Dog House, hull preservation work, virtual programs and technologies, national education programs, veterans programming, and Freedom of the Seas celebrations. There are a lot of great things occurring and in the hopper, so please don’t forget to follow us on our social media channels on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.


As we slowly grow our way out of the effects of the pandemic, we will continue to need the support of each of you. The only way that we will be able to become the community oriented National Museum of the Surface Navy at the Battleship IOWA that we all desire is as a team. I realize that every individual is different, yet each of your contributions is incredibly important. The meaning of contributions is broad, but the best definition I have found is “the part played by a person or thing in bringing about a result or helping something to advance.” Your contribution is important whether it is time, financial, pro-bono, in-kind, advocacy, ambassadorship, or a combination of any of those.


As I look out on the horizon, there are numerous areas in which we need support including volunteers, pro-bono consultants, in-kind donors of materials, corporate sponsors, major capital campaign contributors and much, much more. Let us know how you would like to contribute and we will do our best to find a match! At a minimum, please consider sharing our posts on social media and/or donating a comfortable dollar amount every month.


We have a lot to be proud of as a team! We hopefully have weathered the most difficult part of the pandemic storm, our transition to the National Museum of the Surface Navy is accelerating, and our programs have become accessible by a much broader audience. We continue to fight and have become stronger because of it. I am proud to have each of you as part of our team.


My blessings for a safe and amazing week.


Jonathan Williams
President and CEO

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