This endowment was established by Juanita Tamayo Lott to center federal public policy in education and calls to action for students and the broader community. She states, "To a significant degree, students, faculty, and the general American public no longer understand and appreciate civics and the institutional powers and checks and balances of the federal executive, legislative and judicial branches. The distinct role of federal public policy is blurred with other public, the nonprofit, and corporate sectors. Yet, these latter sectors are not accountable to the American people nor do they defend the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights.
Providing support through the establishment of these funds the Asian American Studies Program and UMCP, strategically situated near the nation's capital, have the timely opportunity to address this gap by nurturing students and the broader community to effectively understand and engage in federal public policy of, for, and by the people." Lott retired from federal service in 2008 after holding senior statistician, demographer, policy analyst and management positions with the U.S. Census Bureau, the National Center for Education Statistics, the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, and the Committee on National Statistics, the National Academy of Sciences.