NEW LONDON, Conn. (October 29, 2015) – The National Coast Guard Museum Association today recognized the members of the American Waterways Operators, the national trade association for the tugboat, towboat and barge industry, for their contributions to support construction of the nation’s first and only National Coast Guard Museum. AWO’s roughly 350 member companies own and operate tugboats, towboats and barges and provide marine services on the inland waterways, the Atlantic, Pacific and Gulf coasts, the Great Lakes, and ports and harbors throughout the United States.
AWO’s Board of Directors has encouraged every member of the association to make a contribution to the museum. To date, $1.66 million in contributions have been received from AWO member companies, including Kirby Corporation, Ingram Barge Company, AEP River Operations, American Commercial Lines, Canal Barge Company, and McAllister Towing.
Adm. Jim Loy, USCG (ret.), 21st Commandant, and a member of the NCGMA Board of Directors, said he was thrilled by the commitment of support from AWO members. “AWO and its members’ 100 percent participation will inspire the maritime community and ensure the success of the National Coast Guard Museum,” Loy said.
The National Coast Guard Museum Association’s goal is to raise a total of $100 million over the next five years so the museum can be open to the public in 2020. Plans are underway as the project has moved from concept to design.
“AWO members rely on the Coast Guard to keep our nation’s waterways safe, secure, and efficient arteries for essential maritime commerce,” said AWO President & CEO Thomas Allegretti. “We are proud to support construction of the first-ever National Coast Guard Museum to showcase the fine work of the Coast Guard and the importance of maritime transportation to our nation.”
AWO Chairman of the Board David Sehrt, Senior Vice President and Chief Engineering Officer of Ingram Barge Company, urged all AWO members to join Ingram in supporting construction of the museum, calling it “a worthy project that is long overdue, and one that Ingram is happy to support.”
“We are so thankful for the generosity of AWO and its members,” said Rear Adm. Richard M. Larrabee, USCG (ret.) of the NCGMA board. “These donations will help us achieve significant project milestones over the next few years. We are honored to have AWO’s support behind us.”
About the National Coast Guard Museum Association
The National CG Museum Association, Inc. – a 501 (c)(3) Non-Profit Charitable Organization – was formed in 2001 to raise funds and apply for and administer federal and state grants for the sole purpose of acquiring land, designing, constructing, developing exhibits and turning over to the US Coast Guard a national museum in the City of New London, Connecticut. For more information, please visit www.coastguardmuseum.org.
About The American Waterways Operators
The American Waterways Operators is the national advocate for the U.S. tugboat, towboat and barge industry, which serves the nation as the safest, most environmentally friendly, and most economical mode of freight transportation. AWO members operate on the rivers, coasts, Great Lakes, and harbors of the United States, moving vital commodities safely, reducing air emissions, water pollution, and highway congestion, protecting homeland security, and providing family-wage jobs for tens of thousands of Americans. AWO promotes the long term economic soundness of the industry and works to enhance its ability to provide safe, efficient, and environmentally responsible transportation. For more information, please visit americanwaterways.com.