On Thursday, 19 November in a ceremony at its Washington offices, the U.S. World War One Centennial Commission signed a partnership of mutual support with France’s Mission Du Centenaire 14-18. Mission Du Centenaire is the official government agency in France set up to provide public education and commemoration for the war, and is the counterpart to the U.S commission.
The agreement calls for the two organizations to share their experience, knowledge, and technical means as they prepare for the commemoration of the American intervention in World War One. Specifically, it identifies four areas for particular cooperation: 1) the identification and planning of the main events, 2) communication, digital and cultural cooperation, 3) education, and 4) remembrance tourism.
Daniel Dayton, Executive Director of the Centennial Commission, and Joseph Zimet, Directeur General for the Mission Du Centenaire, signed the document in the presence of the Chair and Vice Chair of the Commission, Robert J. Dalessandro and Edwin Fountain respectively, as well as the Mission Du Centenaire’s Diplomatic Counselor, Christian Thimonier, and their External Affairs Counselor, Sophie De Villiers. Also present to witness was Centennial Commissioner Monique Seefried.
“We are thrilled to have this formal agreement in place.” said Directeur General Zimet, “We have been informal partners since our creations. However, this memorandum brings our relationship to a greater level of commitment and specificity for both sides.”.
Executive Director Dayton agreed. “This agreement reflects the spirit of teamwork and solidarity that our countries experienced during the challenges of the Great War one hundred years ago, and opens the door for new opportunities to explain that war and honor the sacrifices of our countrymen.