WASHINGTON, April 12, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today, timed with the President's designation of the Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument on National Equal Pay Day, the National Park Foundation announced a one million dollar gift from businessman and philanthropist David M. Rubenstein to fund critical repairs to and restoration of the newest national park site located in Washington, D.C. It is Rubenstein's fourth gift to the National Park Foundation's Centennial Campaign for America's National Parks.
The donation, presented during the National Park Service's Centennial year, will help ensure the proper protection and care for the National Woman's Party (NWP) collection stored in the house and provide much-needed repairs to the building's HVAC system, chimney, roof, gutters and windows.
"I am honored to be a part of helping to educate current and future generations of Americans about the sacrifices and achievements of so many brave people in the struggle for women's rights and equality in the U.S.," said David M. Rubenstein, Co-CEO of The Carlyle Group.
"David Rubenstein's generous gift at the establishment of the Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument will help the National Park Service share this important piece of American history at the site where the National Woman's Party advanced the cause of women's equality," said National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis. "Continuing his patriotic philanthropy, Mr. Rubenstein continues to energize and enhance the work of the National Park Service as we begin our second century of stewardship."
The Centennial Campaign for America's National Parks is the largest comprehensive fundraising campaign in the Foundation's history. The $350 million effort will make transformative investments to protect America's special places, connect people from all backgrounds to parks, and inspire future generations of national park stewardship. With the addition of Rubenstein's gift, the Foundation's total fundraising is more than $215 million.
"The National Park Foundation is proud to support the National Park Service's work in telling America's collective story and sharing our nation's history in the places where it unfolded," said Will Shafroth, president of the National Park Foundation, the official charity of America's national parks. "Mr. Rubenstein's support of this new national monument continues his commitment to patriotic philanthropy by shedding light on the fight for the advancement of women's suffrage and equal rights, and highlighting the leaders who changed the course of history."
Located on Capitol Hill, the Sewall-Belmont House – as the property has been known since its designation as a National Historic Landmark in 1974 – contains a museum, library, and extensive collections and archives associated with the National Woman's Party, its founder Alice Paul, and the mission to advance women's suffrage and equal rights throughout the 20th century. From this house, Paul rewrote the Equal Rights Amendment and led the fight for its passage in Congress. Paul and the NWP advocated tirelessly for women's political, social, and economic equality, not just in the United States, but internationally.
From its inception, the National Park System has benefited from private support. Many of the earliest national parks were the direct beneficiaries of generous philanthropists who stepped forward to keep national parks protected and accessible for everyone.
A leader following in this incredible tradition, Mr. Rubenstein's gifts of patriotic philanthropy benefitting the National Park Service are: $7.5 million to restore the Washington Monument after the earthquake in 2012; $12.35 million to restore Arlington House, The Robert E. Lee Memorial, in July 2014; $5.37 million to refurbish the U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial in April 2015; and $18.5 million to restore the Lincoln Memorial in February 2016.
ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK SERVICE More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's 411 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at www.nps.gov.
ABOUT DAVID RUBENSTEIN David M. Rubenstein is Co-CEO of The Carlyle Group, a global alternative asset manager based in Washington, DC. He is also Chairman of the Boards of Trustees of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and Duke University, a Regent of the Smithsonian Institution, Co-Chairman of the Brookings Institution, Vice-Chairman of the Council on Foreign Relations and President of the Economic Club of Washington. In 2012, Rubenstein donated $7.5 million to repair the earthquake-damaged Washington Monument and in 2014, $12.35 million to restore Arlington House, The Robert E. Lee Memorial. In 2013 he donated $10 million to George Washington's Mount Vernon home to support the construction and endowment of a library to house Washington's books and papers and to serve as a center for leadership training.
ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK FOUNDATION The National Park Foundation is the official charity of America's national parks and nonprofit partner to the National Park Service. Chartered by Congress in 1967, the National Park Foundation raises private funds to help PROTECT more than 84 million acres of national parks through critical conservation and preservation efforts, CONNECT all Americans with their incomparable natural landscapes, vibrant culture and rich history, and INSPIRE the next generation of park stewards. In 2016, commemorating the National Park Service's 100th anniversary, the Foundation launched The Centennial Campaign for America's National Parks, a $350 million comprehensive fundraising campaign to strengthen and enhance the future of these national treasures for the next hundred years. Find out more and become a part of the national park community at www.nationalparks.org.