Today, Congressman Jim Himes (CT-04) announced that the Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk has for the second year in a row been named as a finalist for Institute of Museum and Library Services’ (IMLS) 2022 National Medal for Museum and Library Service.  

“I can’t think of a more worthy recipient,” said Himes. “The Maritime Aquarium has completely reimagined and reinvented its engagement with the community in light of the pandemic and other unprecedented challenges that the world has faced this year.” 

Jason Patlis, the Aquarium's President and CEO, said being named an IMLS National Medal finalist is a tremendous honor.

“We thank IMLS for again affirming the positive values that The Maritime Aquarium contributes to the cultural, educational, economic and environmental well-being of the community in Norwalk and the region,” Patlis said. “To be recognized two years in a row speaks to the resilience and commitment of the team here at the Aquarium, especially as the pandemic challenged our very survival and yet we expanded our educational programs, opened new exhibits and created new initiatives to address societal priorities toward diversity, equity, accessibility and inclusion.

“We are so grateful to Congressman Himes for his leadership in supporting and recognizing the invaluable role that museums and libraries play in their communities, especially in times of need," Patlis added. "We were honored to once again be nominated by Congressman Himes and be recognized as a finalist for the National Medal of Museum and Library Service.”

According to the IMLS, the National Medal for Museum and Library Service is the nation’s highest honor for institutions that make significant and exceptional contributions to their communities. Since 1994, IMLS has presented the award to institutions that demonstrate extraordinary and innovative approaches to community service. The six winners will be announced in May. Click here to learn more.