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Aspen Art Museum bestowed National Medal, nation's highest honor for museums

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Posted at 1:59 PM, Jul 18, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-18 15:59:25-04

ASPEN, Colo. — The nation's highest honor for museums and libraries is the National Medal, and in 2017, the Aspen Art Museum was one of 10 recipients of the prestigious award.

The museum, which showcases contemporary art, was selected from 30 finalists, due to the museum's impact on Colorado communities, specifically the underserved Hispanic community of the rural valley.

While receiving the award on July 17, the museum also honored a community member whose participation in the museum helped create a new program to serve the Hispanic population. 

Samuel Bernal, who runs the area's Spanish-language radio station La Tricolor, helped accept the award due to his participation in the new program which created a bond for hundreds of Hispanic residents with contemporary art. 

"These 10 institutions are the epitome of community catalysts. They continuously make their neighborhoods better places to live and work. Through their partnerships and programs, their services and support, these institutions are enriching lives and contributing to community wellbeing," Dr. Kathryn K. Matthew, the director for the Institute of Museum and Library Services, said.