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Pittsburgh Zoo and Aquarium drops PPG from name, ending 20 year partnership

The Pittsburgh Zoo and Aquarium debuted their new sign on Thursday, Jan. 12. SUBMITTED PHOTO

The new year brought about a new name for the former Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium, the organization officially dropping PPG from their name as the naming rights agreement that spanned 20 years came to an end.

On Dec. 15 of 2022, the Zoological Society of Pittsburgh and PPG Industries announced in a joint statement that PPG would relinquish its naming rights to the aquarium to focus their partnership on STEM education programming.

“Since investing in the naming rights sponsorship in 2002, PPG’s business has evolved and its perspective on where the PPG Foundation can provide the strongest value as a community partner has continued to transform,” said Malesia Dunn, executive director of PPG Foundation and Corporate Global Social Responsibility, said in the joint news release. “We look forward to continuing our relationship with the Pittsburgh Zoo and Aquarium through STEM educational programming.”

The program looks to fund major STEM educational programs to teens, and will offer local at-risk middle school students learning opportunities both at the zoo and within their schools. These programs will also offer animal encounters, career shadowing experiences, and team project opportunities.

PPG and the zoo agreed to the original 10-year naming rights sponsorship in April of 2002, and then extended it for another 10-year period in August 2011. In April of 2022, the deal expired, but an agreement was reached to keep the name until the beginning of the new year.

“We are excited to be able to continue and evolve our PPG relationship,” Jeremy Goodman, president and CEO of the zoo, said in the news release. “Education is at the core of both organizations, so continuing to partner with PPG with a new focus on inclusive and engaging STEM programming is a positive direction for us and the entire community.”

The zoo officially adopted the name change on January of the new year, debuting their new signs reading “Pittsburgh Zoo and Aquarium” in a social media video on Jan. 12.

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