One of Chattanooga’s biggest tourist attractions, the Tennessee Aquarium, has tapped businessman and 1980 Washington and Lee University graduate Keith Sanford as the institution’s fourth president and CEO.
“I’m excited,” said Keith in an interview with the Times Free Press. “It’s a way for me to give back to the community that’s been so good for me.”
Keith, an executive vice president at First Tennessee Bank, has been active in his community, serving as the chairman of the 2015 United Way Campaign and as director of the Tivoli Foundation, which aims to restore the iconic downtown Tivoli Theatre.
He noted that one of his first goals will be to raise money for the Tennessee Aquarium Freshwater Conservation Institute, a $4.5 million structure under construction on the Baylor School campus that will raise fish, including lake sturgeon and brook trout, for release into the wild.
“The aquarium, other than capital needs, is fairly self-sufficient,” said Keith. “But the conservation institute is going to need community support.”