NC Museum of Natural Sciences receives top honor

dmenconi@newsobserver.comApril 24, 2014 

— The N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences in Raleigh has picked up the nation’s highest honor for museums and libraries. It won a 2014 National Medal for Museum and Library Service, presented by the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

“It’s a big day,” museum director Emlyn Koster said. “To be in a national top honor like this is to be viewed as a thought-and-practice leader in the field.”

The science museum, which is the most visited cultural attraction in the state, is the first Triangle institution to win.

Next month, Koster will lead a six-member delegation that includes 15-year-old junior curator Molly Paul to Washington, D.C., for an award ceremony at the White House. First lady Michelle Obama will present medals to the 10 winners, including the Chicago Public Library and Brooklyn Botanic Gardens.

Paul is a student at St. Mary’s School in Raleigh who has been a junior curator and volunteer at the museum for three years. She wrote in an essay that her parents started taking her to the museum when she was young and that she feels it’s a second home.

“Molly’s remarkable achievements as a knowledgeable and eloquent voice for the natural world make her a great ambassador for what ultimately matters, locally and globally,” Koster said in a news release.

Menconi: 919-829-4759 or

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