NEW LONDON, CT—July 30, 2016—The National Coast Guard Museum Association Inc. (NCGMA), in conjunction with the Foundation for Coast Guard History, has taken a major step toward developing the themes, stories and exhibits to be included in the National Coast Guard Museum, which will be built on the downtown waterfront in New London, Conn.
NCGMA’S Museum Exhibit Advisory Panel (MEAP) held its summer conference this weekend on the grounds of the United States Coast Guard Academy to begin answering the question, “What makes a great museum?”
“This is the critical first step toward deciding what the museum will look like when its doors open,” said Richard J. Grahn, president of the National Coast Guard Museum Association Inc. “It’s tremendously exciting to be in the room with so many Coast Guard historians, and museum experts, who will recommend to the NCGMA how best to tell the Coast Guard’s story in this one-of-a-kind National Museum.”
The MEAP was organized to assist the NCGMA and its design consultants in creating a world-class museum to honor the men and women of the U. S. Coast Guard, past, present and future. Identifying the themes, stories, and artifacts that are best suited to tell and preserve the story of the United States Coast Guard and its predecessor services is critical to the development of exhibits in the National Coast Guard Museum.
“These exhibits need to tell the compelling stories from the Coast Guard’s past, convey the missions performed by the Coast Guard and inspire visitors to appreciate the national service and values of Coast Guard men and women,” said CAPT Jon Nickerson, U.S. Coast Guard (Ret.), coordinator of the Museum Exhibition Advisory Panel. “We will engage the public with a stunning variety of artifacts, interactive experiences and educational programs, all in tribute to the brave men and women of the United States Coast Guard, past, present and future.”
The Museum Exhibit Advisory Panel, representing over 100,000 members across 30 organizations, is composed of representatives of nonprofit organizations and Coast Guard service members who aspire to preserve and promote the culture and traditions of the Coast Guard.
Among the MEAP’s responsibilities are:
- Identifying potential exhibit themes
- Responding to requests for architectural input and review of exhibit space design
- Cataloging exhibit content including historical artifacts, paintings, official records, audio and video
- Serving as active sponsors and advocates for promoting the Museum within each member’s respective organization
In addition to members from the United States Coast Guard (including USCG History, USCG Curation, USCG Retiree Council, USCG Research and Development Center), participants in this conference represented the following associations:
- Association for Rescue at Sea
- Coast Guard Academy Alumni Association
- Coast Guard Auxiliary Association
- Coast Guard Aviation Association
- Coast Guard Chief Petty Officers Association
- Coast Guard Combat Veterans Association
- Coast Guard Cuttermen Association
- Coast Guard Lightship Sailors International Association
- Coast Guard Spouses Club
- Foundation for Coast Guard History
- National Coast Guard Museum Association, Inc.
- Order of the Ancient Trident Association
- United States Navy Memorial Association
- United States Lifesaving Service Heritage Association
- United States Lighthouse Society
- Women’s Leadership Initiative
“The National Coast Guard Museum will provide interactive experiences that immerse visitors in the thrill, excitement, and challenges of Coast Guard duties through multi-media visualizations and waterborne exhibits,” said CAPT Wes Pulver, U.S. Coast Guard (Ret.), executive director of the National Coast Guard Museum Association Inc. “The Museum Exhibit Advisory Panel has now begun the process of recommending designs, concepts, and themes to be reflected in the Museum’s exhibits.”