A Letter from Roger Germann, the new President and CEO of The Florida Aquarium
Being a parent is one of the most tremendous responsibilities anyone can take on. It also can be one of the most daunting because as parents, we regularly ponder what the future holds for our children. One area of concern is the health of our planet, and that’s why I’m honored to lead The Florida Aquarium, along with my family and our passionate and experienced staff, to be part of the solution.
Our blue planet needs our help now more than ever, and The Florida Aquarium is leading the charge to protect and restore this one-time gift from Mother Nature. Our children are our most important treasures, and at our Aquarium – and yes, this crown jewel of Tampa is OUR aquarium– we’re investing our time, talent and resources in providing world-class, educational and fun experiences. Whether your family comes face-to-face with sharks behind the giant acrylic window in our Coral Reef exhibit, or gets wet in our newly renovated Splash Pad, or whether your kids meet a penguin or attend one of our award-winning education classes, there’s something for everyone to enjoy at our Florida Aquarium.
As good stewards of the planet, we’re also rolling up our sleeves and saving injured sea turtles, restoring endangered coral reefs and studying sharks who desperately need our help. We’ve recently launched The Florida Aquarium Center for Conservation at Apollo Beach, which is one of the few conservation outposts of its kind. In the future, we’ll open this important research and conservation facility to the public, but until then, we’re immersing ourselves in critical scientific work.
Recent national studies confirm that we are inspired by the ocean, but often remain unwilling to accept that it is in trouble. Our children deserve the best. As parents, my wife and I will work tirelessly to leave our earth better for our children and yours. As community leaders, the Aquarium’s dedicated staff and volunteers will work tirelessly to “wow” and inspire you and your children and take action on behalf of animals and ecosystems that rely on our help.
Leaving Chicago wasn’t easy, but my wife and I can think of no better community in which to raise our family and change the world than the Tampa Bay region, which provides an incredible quality of life for all. From its rich Cuban heritage to the diversity of our community, we’re one incredible melting pot of ideas, culture and people. The Florida Aquarium is proud to be a strong member of our diverse community, providing a safe place to play, learn, explore, laugh and create family memories that last a lifetime.
As a fellow parent, let me personally invite you and your family to visit our Aquarium, attend one of our kid-friendly programs, or join me and my wife in supporting our important efforts. Our kids are counting on us to protect and restore our blue planet, and our blue planet is counting on our Florida Aquarium—but we can’t do it without you.
*This article was originally published in the October 2017 issue of Tampa Bay Parenting Magazine.