What We Stand For

We view diversity as a strength and recognize that we can only achieve our mission by including the skills and varied perspectives of all people. We understand that environmental burdens and benefits are not equitably distributed and that we have a responsibility to foster inclusive conversations about our marine environment. We strive to create a welcoming and equitable culture as we work together to fulfill the Aquarium’s mission.

Our SALISH Values

  • SUSTAINABLE: Adopting and promoting, internally and externally, practices that improve ocean health.
  • AWE INSPIRING: Creating captivating experience for all audiences.
  • LEARNING & IMPROVING: Fostering, evaluating and applying knowledge and discovery.
  • INCLUSIVE COMMUNITY: Recognizing that diversity is critical to achieve our mission.
  • SCIENTIFIC INTEGRITY: Ensuring our credibility with evidence-based practices.
  • HONORING PLACE: Using our location and history as a lens for larger understanding.

Diversifying the Conservation Movement

For too long, the people most impacted by environmental harm have been marginalized when crafting solutions, unable to lend their expertise and ensure their needs are met.

The Seattle Aquarium is aiming to change this with a new fellowship program specifically for people from marginalized communities. Fellows will be paid a living wage as they develop new programming to engage groups and organizations who have historically not been well-served by the Aquarium.

This fellowship program will further our mission of Inspiring Conservation of our Marine Environment while building cohorts of future leaders from diverse communities who can support one another, first at Seattle Aquarium and ultimately at aquariums and conservation organizations across the globe.

Honoring Place

The Seattle Aquarium honors our location in the traditional and contemporary territories of the Coast Salish people, who have stewarded these lands and waters since time immemorial.

Guided by our mission and values, the Aquarium is committed to developing a strong foundation for long-lasting and mutually beneficial partnerships with Coast Salish and Urban Native peoples as well as other Indigenous communities so we can conserve our one world ocean.

The Seattle Aquarium's commitment to anti-racism

The Seattle Aquarium respects and celebrates the vitality and strength of the ethnic and cultural diversity that thrives in our neighborhood and surrounding communities. We recognize that we can only achieve our mission of Inspiring Conservation of Our Marine Environment by including the skills and varied perspectives of our entire community. To include the entire community, we must be a welcoming and inclusive organization making the conscious decision to identify and challenge racism daily. This requires ongoing self-awareness and self-reflection as we move through our daily operations and plan for the future. 

As an organization striving to be anti-racist, we are making ourselves more aware of how racism has affected the lived experience of Black and Indigenous people and People of Color and in what ways we are playing a role in those experiences. We know that racism is systemic and has been deeply ingrained in society throughout history. We understand that too many people knowingly and unknowingly participate in racism and perpetuate white-dominant norms. Using our sphere of influence, the Seattle Aquarium is actively opposing racism within our industry and communities of conservation by committing to the following: 

  • Facilitate mandatory in-house diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) workshops for all our staff.
  • Address internalized racial and implicit biases.
  • Commit to be a learning community that identifies, implements and adapts best practices on how to create a welcoming and inclusive space for Black, Indigenous and People of Color staff, volunteers and guests.
  • Actively continue to evaluate and implement more inclusive hiring practices, as well as retention and promotion strategies, with the goal of our workforce representing the diverse community in which we are located.
  • Operate an institutionalized, sustainable DEI Council with the authority to guide and support the Aquarium in the application of time and resources to create an inclusive culture.

These commitments, while not an exclusive list, represent the Aquarium’s commitment to continued diversity, equity and inclusion learning and practices. The Aquarium is currently creating a DEI strategic plan that will guide our next steps as we continue to evaluate our organization through an anti-racist and inclusive lens.

A rocky beach along the Salish Sea in Washington.