Honoring Marine Biologist Julie Packard!

In honor of Julie Packard, renown marine biologist and leader of ocean conservation! We were inspired by the recent unveiling of her portrait at The Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery. She's currently Executive Director of the beloved Monterey Bay Aquarium. 

Julie helped found the Monterey Bay Aquarium, and is credited with redefining aquariums as a force for conservation. This portrait is a part of the Smithsonian American Women’s History Initiative, a project to recognize the contributions of women in American society. The Smithsonian's director, Kim Sajet, explains that, “the history of portraiture has favored men from the ruling elite, and as a result less than a quarter of our collection depicts women who tend to come from professions ‘in the public eye’ such as politicians, actors and authors. [...] But scientists, especially women scientists, have historically been relegated to the background of achievement—and art. We felt it was important to commission a new work of a leader in education, research, and activism—who could serve as an inspiration to young girls in particular.”

Gallery Image: Julie Packard by Hope Gangloff, acrylic on canvas, 2019. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution. Gift of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Board of Trustees. © Hope Gangloff. Photo by Mark Gulezian /Smithsonian’s National Portrait


In her portrait Julie asked to have the Aquarium's iconic Kelp Forest included, and with accurate representations of the marine life behind her, no matter how jarring their oversized teeth may be. The towering kelp forest exhibit was actually a big risk at the time, because no one had attempted to preserve a living kelp forest outside of the ocean before. It remains an enchanting and awe-inspiring experience to be in its presence. The Aquarium is dubbed a "scientific and policy powerhouse," in large part to her leadership since its opening in 1984.

Her portrait and mission speaks to our heart. We hope she inspires you too. Colorway available as a sock kit and solo in Merino Twist. 


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