Carnegie Discoverers

PolymitaFounded in 2006, the Carnegie Discoverers is the realization of the desire to develop a voluntary support base for Carnegie Museum of Natural History.  

The principal purpose of the group is to assist and support the museum in promoting its cultural, scientific, and educational missions and in the development of new and larger audiences for the institution.  

Through a number of special events each year, Carnegie Discoverers explore and learn about the many amazing facets of the museum. These opportunities afford our members a unique relationship with, and an appreciation of, Carnegie Museum of Natural History through direct and behind-the-scenes encounters with members of the museum’s world-class scientific and education staff. Click here for a listing of planned and selected past events. 

Further, our members have the opportunity to attend additional exclusive museum events including field trips and openings of new exhibitions.

While Discoverers are welcome to attend as many of these events as they wish, attendance is totally elective.

As a major part of its mission, the Carnegie Discoverers have developed programs through which additional financial support is provided to the museum:

  • The Wish List program provides the museum’s scientific and educational staff members an annual opportunity to request funding for items or services that would assist them in their museum endeavors. The requests cannot exceed $2,500. A committee of members of the Carnegie Discoverers reviews the requests, and committee-approved requests are submitted to the membership for possible funding. 

    From its inception in 2008 through 2012, the Wish List program has funded 54 requests in the total amount of $86,906, for an average of $1,609 per request.

    For its annual Discoverers “Show and Tell” event, museum staff whose Wish List requests were funded in the previous year are invited to detail what their funding accomplished.
     
  • In October 2010, the Carnegie Discoverers initiated its Special Project program, in which a special item or program is selected to be acquired or supported for the museum.

    At its initial meeting, the Special Project committee, again composed solely of Discoverers members, recommended that the Discoverers fund the acquisition of a new projection system to replace the outdated system being used in the museum’s Earth Theater.

    The goal of raising the $60,000 needed to accomplish this task was raised in record time. The new system enhances the experience of museum visitors by using Earth Theater's technical resources to present digital media programs developed and presented by the museum’s research and education staff, focusing on the scientific collection, ongoing research, and current topics in natural science.

In summary, the Carnegie Discoverers provide the opportunity to learn more about, explore further within, gain a deeper appreciation of, and, when possible, provide fiscal support to Carnegie Museum of Natural History.  

—Richard Moriarty, President 

Click here to learn about becoming a Carnegie Discoverers member. Additional information about Carnegie Discoverers activities can be found at the following links:

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Dramatic Carnegie Museum exhibit due for the top of the table 

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
Carnegie Museum's research kept going by donations, volunteers 

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
Private donors supply scientists with crucial tools for research 

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Carnegie gets big donation from hospital 

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Top: Polymita picta specimens in the museum's mollusk collection