The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk Named Finalist for 2022 IMLS National Medal for Museum and Library Service

Photo: Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk

NORWALK, CT – The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) announced today that The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk is among 30 finalists for the 2022 National Medal for Museum and Library Service, the second year in a row that the Aquarium has achieved the honor.

The Maritime Aquarium is one of two institutions in Connecticut to be selected as a finalist for the 2022 award. The Mattatuck Museum in Waterbury is also a finalist. The Maritime Aquarium is the only U.S. aquarium up for the honor.

Jason Patlis, President and CEO of The Maritime Aquarium, 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.”

The National Medal is the nation’s highest honor given to museums and libraries that demonstrate significant impact in their communities. For more than 25 years, the award has honored institutions that demonstrate excellence in service to their communities.

IMLS Director Crosby Kemper congratulated all 30 finalists.

“So many museums, so many libraries have done such good work over the last two very difficult years. We are proud to present the 30 finalists for the IMLS National Medal,” Kemper said. “Their work is emblematic of the response of the library and museum worlds to simultaneously fulfilling their mission and serving their communities.”

To celebrate this honor, IMLS is encouraging The Maritime Aquarium’s community members to share stories, memories, pictures and videos on social media using the #ShareYourStory and #IMLSmedals hashtags, and engage with IMLS on Facebook and Twitter. For more information, please visit the IMLS website:


National Medal winners will be announced in early June. Representatives from winning institutions will be honored for their extraordinary contributions during a virtual National Medal Ceremony this summer.
To see the full list of finalists and learn more about the National Medal, go to

Learn more about Maritime Aquarium exhibits, programs and conservation work at

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