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Middlesex Savings Charitable Foundation Awards $20,000 to Nonprofit Leader

November 14, 2023
Middlesex Savings Charitable Foundation has named Neil Gordon, CEO of the Discovery Museum, its 2023 John R. Heerwagen Award recipient. The Foundation awarded a one-time grant of $20,000 to the Discovery Museum to be used in a manner that he believes will benefit his organization.
Established in 2016, the John R. Heerwagen Award recognizes a strong, nonprofit leader whose work has significantly benefited the lives and wellbeing of residents within the Foundation's community. It reflects the support that John R. Heerwagen, former CEO of Middlesex Savings Bank, provided to the Foundation and its efforts to help strengthen local nonprofits and his belief in the importance of developing and recognizing strong leaders.
Since 1982, the Discovery Museum has provided young children and families with imaginative learning experiences that inspire hands-on, curiosity-driven play. For the past 14 years, Gordon has served as CEO, during which time the Museum has experienced tremendous growth as a result of his efforts to increase the organization’s capacity and form strong collaborations with community partners. 

When Gordon took over the role of CEO in 2009, the Discovery Museum was in poor fiscal health, its facilities were badly outdated, and there was no plan in place to guide the organization’s growth or safeguard its future. Since then, Gordon has not only restored the Museum to financial health, he has also fully transformed the organization into a model center for family learning, recognized widely for its industry-leading commitments to early STEM education, accessibility, and environmental sustainability. 

Says Discovery Museum Chief Development Officer, Marie Beam, “Neil’s legacy will be the compassionate culture he has fostered, in which every plan, project, and program is built on the simple ideas that all children are capable of great things and that joyful play experiences are a right of childhood.” 

by Middlesex Savings Bank