Friends of the National World War II Memorial, Inc. was incorporated in Washington, D.C., in 2007 as a not-for-profit, 501(c) (3) corporation. A majority of its founding directors were former members of the American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) and of its World War II Memorial Site and Design Committee. The ABMC, a Presidentially appointed Commission, was charged by the Congress to find a site, design, fund and build the Memorial. The Board of Directors includes former members of the American Battle Monuments Commission, the World War II Memorial Advisory Board, Veterans of World War II and other key players involved in bringing the Memorial into being.
The founders of Friends believe that the World War II Memorial is a national treasure reflecting the historic significance of World War II on American life and world history. The purpose of the new organization is to help make the Memorial all that it was intended to be by its builders—an open, welcoming gathering place on the center east-west axis of the National Mall, to commemorate and celebrate the defining event of the 20th century, to honor all who served on the home front and the battle front and all who gave their lives in history's greatest and costliest war. In cooperation with the National Park Service, Friends has the lead responsibility to plan and support commemorative and celebratory events at the Memorial and to enhance the educational experience of those who visit the Memorial.
Friends of the National World War II Memorial is governed through by-laws approved by its Board of Directors. The Board meets twice annually. Friends is funded through private contributions for an endowment, ongoing operations and special projects and events. All financial matters, accounting procedures and reporting requirements are subject to its charter as a non- profit corporation, and as an IRS approved 501 ( C ) (3) organization.
The purposes of Friends of the National World War II Memorial, working in cooperation with the National Park Service, Military District of Washington and other interested parties are:
- to insure that the legacy, lessons and sacrifices of World War II are not forgotten: to enhance the educational experience of those who visit the Memorial.
- to plan and support commemorative and celebratory events at the Memorial.
- to contribute, as appropriate, to the continuing care of the Memorial and its park-like grounds.