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Roundhouse Aquarium Nonprofit Announces New Leadership

Oct 23, 2023 01:55PM ● By Mb News Staff

The iconic Roundhouse Aquarium in Manhattan Beach. Photo courtesy of the Roundhouse.

Oceanographic Teaching Stations, Inc. (OTS), the nonprofit that manages the iconic Roundhouse Aquarium in Manhattan Beach, has announced the appointment of Hillel “Hal” Cohn as the new chair of its board of directors. Cohn is currently Senior of Counsel and a former partner in the corporate department of Morrison & Foerster LLP.

(Hal Cohn - photo courtesy of the Roundhouse Aquarium)

The board also created a new vice chair role to be held by Mark Burton and a chair emeritus position to be held by immediate past chair John Roberts.

“As a member of the Roundhouse Board since 2004, Hal’s extensive background and long-time support of the Roundhouse Aquarium and profound love for the ocean makes him a natural fit for this role," said Roberts in a statement. "Since 2004, he has been assisting OTS with their risk management programs and providing them with guidance on contracts and city relations.”

Cohn noted that he aims to deepen OTS’s continued integration with the local community and expand the Roundhouse Aquarium’s educational programs throughout Southern California and beyond. 

“I am truly honored to step into this new role as chair of the board,” said Cohn in a statement. “As the Roundhouse Aquarium embarks on deepening its impact in the community, we will continue to focus on programs that educate the public about the importance of conserving marine life and protecting the marine environment. Central to our mission will be preserving the South Bay’s iconic symbol in Manhattan Beach – the Roundhouse Aquarium.”

Cohn added: “I look forward to the support of our new vice chair, Mark Burton, a dedicated leader in the local community who previously served on the Manhattan Beach City Council and held a number of key assignments with the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office. I also anticipate  relying on the wise counsel of Chair Emeritus John Roberts, who was a distinguished professor of biology and environmental science in the Cal State system.”

The OTS's board of directors has members with experience in business development, strategic planning, and community outreach, serving the South Bay and beyond.

“Hal is an accomplished corporate counsel who brings strategic and critical skills to help strengthen the OTS as an organization, and the Roundhouse Aquarium as a community asset,” Michael Greenberg, president of Skechers USA and OTS board member, said in a statment. “We are fortunate and stand to benefit from Hal’s strong leadership, vision and dedication to our organization as we pursue the next phase of growth for the Roundhouse. Both Mark and John will provide strong leadership support for OTS as well.”

Oceanographic Teaching Stations, Inc.

For more than 40 years, Oceanographic Teaching Stations, Inc., a private, not-profit corporation that operates and manages the Roundhouse Aquarium Teaching Center, has worked to educate all generations about the importance of oceans, beaches and tidelands. The Roundhouse provides educational experiences for people of all ages, from a child touching a sea cucumber for the first time, to adults learning how their daily actions affect the ocean. 

OTS offers a series of immersive, hands-on and standards-aligned education programs at the Roundhouse Aquarium, along with remote learning programs delivered to students all across the globe. OTS is committed to engaging Roundhouse Aquarium visitors with the ocean and increasing accessible STEM education to marginalized communities in and beyond the South Bay.

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