Bigelow to dedicate new residence in honor of late director
Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences will hold a public dedication ceremony for its newly constructed Graham Shimmield Residence Hall on May 12 at 2 p.m.
The event will open the new facility and commemorate the life and legacy of Graham Shimmield, who was executive director of Bigelow Laboratory from 2008 until he passed away Dec. 24. Members of the community are encouraged to attend and requested to RSVP at bigelow.org/dedication.
A selection of speakers will share stories of Shimmield’s many contributions to international ocean science, the state of Maine, and Bigelow Laboratory. After the dedication ceremony, guests will be able to socialize and tour the new facility.
“Graham was an accomplished scientist, a visionary leader, and a kind and compassionate human being who changed our organization and our lives,” said Ben Twining, interim executive director at Bigelow Laboratory. “We were very lucky to have him at the helm for the last nine years.”
Under Shimmield’s guidance, Bigelow Laboratory doubled its staff size and relocated from antiquated facilities in West Boothbay Harbor to its state-of-the-art research and education campus in East Boothbay. Shimmield was also instrumental in the construction of the new on-campus student residence hall, which was funded by the Harold Alfond Foundation and an anonymous donor. The residence will support the laboratory’s education programs and will house its first class of visiting scientists on the day after the dedication ceremony.
Shimmield was a globally recognized leader in oceanography who dedicated his life to the study of the ocean. His research earned him recognition as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology, and a recipient of the prestigious Plymouth Marine Sciences Partnership Medal.
Since arriving in Maine in 2008, he served on the boards of the Maine Innovation Economy Advisory Board, Maine Space Grant, Maine Sea Grant, and advisory boards for Maine Maritime Academy and Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory. In July 2015, he was named as one of the top 50 “Bold Visionaries Defining Our State” by Maine Magazine.