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Future Aquarium Trends Webinar: New post-pandemic data, followed by panel discussion with aquarium leaders

IMPACTS Chief Market Engagement Officer Colleen Dilenschneider currently serves on the Board of Directors at the National Aquarium. She has worked with leading nonprofits, including projects concerning the Monterey Bay Aquarium, California Academy of Sciences, Exploratorium, John G. Shedd Aquarium, Tennessee Aquarium, UNESCO, San Diego Zoo, and Wildlife Conservation Society.

Thank you Impacts Experience and all of our panelists and attendees! Over 300 people joined today’s webinar, presented by IMPACTS Experience and hosted by Species360. For a summary of findings, go here.

If you were unable to join in person, you can watch the full recorded presentation of research findings and panel discussion with Aquarium leaders, moderated by Robin Keith.


Future Aquarium Trends

Panel discussion with Jackson Andrews, COO, Tennessee Aquarium; João Falcato, CEO, Lisbon Oceanarium; Roger Germann, President and CEO, The Florida Aquarium; Bart Shepherd, Director, Steinhart Aquarium, and Sandy Trautwein, Director of Aquatics Conservation and Product Management, Species360. Moderator: Robin Keith, President and CEO of EcoLeaders, LLC, and formerly Associate Director of Vision, Innovation, and Strategy for San Diego Zoo Global.

IMPACTS CSO Jim Hekkers helps nonprofit organizations improve strategic planning, management, and market research. Hekkers was previously managing director of the Monterey Bay Aquarium, and on the boards of the National Steinbeck Center, the American Association of Zoos and Aquariums, and others.

In this Webinar presentation and panel discussion, attendees will gain a better understanding of broader trends impacting all aspects of aquarium operations.

First, IMPACTS Experience leaders Colleen Dilenschneider and Jim Hekkers will present data on the top trends surrounding mission execution for aquarium leaders. Expect to learn more about the elevated expectations related to digital engagement, a growing trust in aquariums as institutions, and perceptions surrounding the alignment of animal care and conservation work.

Next, a panel of aquarium leaders – moderated by Robin Keith, President and CEO of EcoLeaders – will answer questions about the changes impacting their institutions, and how they are responding. We appreciate the participation of panelists Jackson Andrews, Director of Operations, Tennessee Aquarium; João Falcato, CEO, Lisbon Oceanarium; Roger Germann, President and CEO, The Florida Aquarium; Bart Shepherd, Director, Steinhart Aquarium, and Sandy Trautwein, Director of Aquatics Conservation and Product Management, Species360.


IMPACTS, a global leader in predictive market intelligence and related technologies, helps executives leading cultural nonprofits such as aquariums and museums to develop audience engagement strategies based on high-confidence, actionable data.

Chief Market Engagement Officer Colleen Dilenschneider uses data to both identify and predict emerging market opportunities and helps nonprofit organizations maintain their relevance and secure their long-term financial futures by building affinity with their onsite and virtual audiences. Colleen has worked with many of the most admired and successful clients in the nonprofit realm, including projects concerning the Monterey Bay Aquarium, California Academy of Sciences, Carnegie Museums, Stanford University, Exploratorium, John G. Shedd Aquarium, Tennessee Aquarium, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), San Diego Zoo, and Wildlife Conservation Society. Colleen currently serves on the Board of Directors at the National Aquarium.

Chief Strategy Officer Jim Hekkers helps leadership at nonprofit organizations improve strategic planning, management, and market research. Hekkers served as the managing director of the Monterey Bay Aquarium from 2001 to 2015, where he oversaw the senior management team, day-to-day operations, and all strategic and exhibition planning. He simultaneously served on the boards of the National Steinbeck Center, the American Association of Zoos and Aquariums, the Monterey County Convention and Visitors Bureau, and the Pacific Grove Museum Association. Hekkers has also served as the president and chief executive officer of the Colorado’s Ocean Journey aquarium in Denver and the marketing director for the Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga. His expertise with and fascination for robust market research help him facilitate strategic plans for IMPACTS’ clients by leveraging credible data-driven insights into charting more data-informed futures.

About the Panelists: We are so appreciative of this group of leaders, each of whom willingly agreed to carve out time to participate and share their perspectives on the future trends and their own organizations’ responses. Robin Keith, President and CEO of EcoLeaders, LLC, will moderate the discussion.

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