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Aspen Art Museum lands national accolade at Washington event

Staff report

The Aspen Art Museum on Monday received the 2017 National Medal for Museum and Library Service, one of 10 institutions from across the nation to be so recognized.

According to the Institute of Museum and Library Services, which acknowledged the recipients in a ceremony at the National Archives Museum in Washington D.C., the National Medal for Museum and Library Science is the highest recognition awarded by the federal government to museums and libraries for service to their communities.

Roaring Fork Valley resident Samuel Bernard, who runs the local Spanish-language radio station La Tricolor, accepted the award.

Bernal helped create the museum’s Arte en Espanol program and tailored its reach to the underserved Hispanic population of the rural valley. With Bernal’s help, Arte en Espanol events drew in hundreds of participants who never before had a connection with the contemporary art museum.

Also honored this year were the Alaska Department of Education and Early Development, Cedar Rapids Public Library (Iowa), Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center, Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum (Wausau, Wisconsin), Long Beach Public Library (California), Peralta Hacienda Historical Park (Oakland, California), Richland Library (Columbia, South Carolina), University of Minnesota Libraries and the Waterville Public Library (Maine).

In 23 years, 172 institutions have been given the National Medal in recognition of their response to societal needs in innovative ways, making a difference for individuals, families and their communities. Learn more at http://www.imls.gov/2017-medals.

 Editor’s note: This story has been updated to reflect the ceremony was Monday.


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