CHICAGO, IL (April 1, 2021) – Shedd Aquarium, a leader in animal care, conservation, education and research, announces the election of six new senior executives to the aquarium’s Board of Trustees which includes Zaldwaynaka “Z” Scott, Chicago State University President.

Zaldwaynaka Scott, president of Chicago State University.

“The dynamic group of leaders brings years of economic, cultural, social and community contributions that will bring great value not only to Shedd’s role in the healing and recovery of Chicago but also to informing and strengthening our future ambitions,” said Brain A. Kenney, chairman, president and CEO of GATX Corporation and Shedd Aquarium Board Chairman.

Scott serves as the President of Chicago State University as of 2018 and is considered a thought leader on issues of equity and access in higher education. In her time as President, she has overseen the development and advancement of student success initiatives, developed and implemented a five-year strategic plan and created a statewide, cross-sector Equity Working Group for Black Student Access and Success in Illinois’ Higher Education.

“Shedd Aquarium’s Board of Trustees is generous in so many ways, providing hard work, ideas, resources and connections that translate to meaningful and lasting impacts for Shedd and for Chicago,” said Bridget Coughlin PhD, president and CEO of Shedd Aquarium. “We are thrilled to usher in new insights and contributions from six tremendous leaders, who are also passionate about animals and saving this blue planet.”

Shedd is governed by the Shedd Aquarium Society, composed of volunteer corporate, civic and community leaders that make up the Board of Trustees with the primary responsibility for governance oversight and fiduciary accountability, as outlined in the Society bylaws. The board provides strategic direction for institutional priorities through work in both governance and programmatic committees.

About Shedd Aquarium
The Shedd Aquarium connects nature lovers and animal enthusiast with the aquatic animal world. Beluga encounters, beach clean-ups and 360 virtual dives with Caribbean reef sharks are all tools that deepen connections with wildlife and work toward this vision. For more information, visit www.sheddaquarium.org.

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CHICAGO, IL – Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot named Chicago State University President Zaldwaynaka Scott, Esq. to the COVID-19 Recovery Task Force for the City of Chicago. The committee held its first meeting last week virtually, co-chaired by Mayor Lightfoot and Sam Skinner, former White House Chief of Staff.

The COVID-19 Recovery Task Force is comprised of five core committees led by industry experts and government leaders, with recommendations developed out of the Policy & Economic Stimulus Committee, the Mental & Emotional Health Committee, and the Marketing & Business Development Committee. President Zaldwaynaka Scott, Esq. joined the Task Force as a member of the Mental & Emotional Health Committee.

“I am honored to join the Task Force,” said President Scott. “COVID-19 is severely impacting the health and economic well-being of Chicago’s black and brown communities. An equitable recovery will not occur without a laser focus on the communities hardest hit. Chicago State University, located on Chicago’s South Side, is Illinois’ only four-year Predominately Black Institution. As President of Chicago State, I and the University are fully committed to the Mayor’s vision.”

The Mental & Emotional Health Committee is focused on ensuring the health and well-being of Chicagoans are supported holistically during COVID-19, as residents experience grief due to the loss of loved ones and stress and anxiety due to unemployment and uncertainty about the future.

There is also a Regional Coordination Committee to ensure alignment across neighboring governing bodies, as well as a Committee titled Change Study that is analyzing the economic and social impacts of COVID-19 on Chicago.

The Task Force will meet weekly for up to eight weeks to create recommendations for a strong recovery from COVID-19 in the City of Chicago. For more information on the COVID-19 Task Force, visit here.

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