August 16, 2017
 
New England Aquarium Names Interim President and CEO

Maliz Beams
March 13, 2017 — New England Aquarium in Boston, one of the city's largest nonprofit tourist attractions, today announced that it has named Maliz Beams, a longtime Aquarium board member and senior financial services executive, as interim president and chief executive officer.

The appointment follows the January announcement that Nigella Hillgarth, president and chief executive officer of the New England Aquarium for the last three years in the job will resign this spring.

Beams will assume the post on April 1.

"We are thrilled that Maliz will assume this interim position," said board chair Donna Hazard. "She has been a tremendous asset in guiding us with her financial knowledge and strategic acumen. We are well poised for a smooth transition while our search committee seeks a permanent CEO."

Beams' career spans a wide range of international and domestic leadership roles as a CEO, president, partner, and senior managing director in financial organizations such as Voya Financial (formerly ING US), TIAA-CREF, Zurich Scudder, Fleet Bank, American Express, and Citibank.

She has been a member of the Aquarium's board since 2010 and currently serves as a trustee and chair of the finance committee.

"Being as passionate as I am about the Aquarium and its mission, this is a true honor," Beams said. "It's an exciting time as the Aquarium continues to build on the record success of last year with a number of strategic initiatives, including the implementation of the Anderson Cabot Center for Ocean Life and the launch of the Science of Sharks exhibit opening in April."

The organization said Beams will spearhead discussions with the city, state, and developer concerning the redevelopment of the Harbor Garage site, which is a part of the Municipal Harbor Plan (MHP) for the downtown waterfront.

"As active and engaged partners in this process for the last three years, the Aquarium remains focused to ensure that any development creates transformative public space as well as addresses our need to be protected during construction and thrive thereafter, and Maliz is the perfect person to represent the Aquarium's continued efforts on this front," said Hazard.

Beams earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Boston College and a Master of Business Administration degree in marketing and finance from Columbia University's Graduate School of Business.

Established in 1969, the Aquarium hosted nearly 1.4 million visitors in 2016, up from 1.28 million people the year before, which had seen a decline from 1.37 million in 2014.

For year ending Dec. 31, 2015, New England Aquarium reported $44.5 million in operating revenue and support, of which $20.2 million came from admission fees, and $42.8 million in expenses, according to its most recently available annual report.

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