ASLC Maintains Prestigious Accreditation by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums
September 20, 2022

The Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA) this week announced that the Alaska SeaLife Center (ASLC) was granted continued accreditation by AZA’s independent Accreditation Commission. The ASLC was first accredited by the AZA in 2011 after meeting the highest standards in animal wellbeing, veterinary programs, conservation, education, and safety, and continues to uphold these high standards as an AZA-accredited aquarium.

AZA is the independent accrediting organization for leading zoos and aquariums in America and the world, assuring the public that when they visit an AZA-accredited facility, it meets the highest standards for animal care and welfare. Less than 10 percent of the 2,800 wildlife exhibitors licensed by the United States Department of Agriculture under the Animal Welfare Act meet the more comprehensive standards of AZA accreditation.

“The public expectations for animal care are constantly increasing, as are our own, which is why AZA’s accreditation standards are focused on providing the best animal care possible,” said Dan Ashe, President and CEO of AZA. “Our rigorous accreditation standards evolve based on modern animal research, ensuring a process the public can trust. We applaud and admire these exceptional zoos, aquariums, and related facilities on meeting the ‘gold standard’ for a modern zoological facility.”

The Alaska SeaLife Center underwent a thorough review to make sure it has and will continue to meet ever-rising standards, which emphasize animal wellbeing, veterinary programs, conservation, education, and safety. AZA requires facilities to complete this rigorous accreditation process every five years as a condition of Association membership.

“After several non-normal years, it’s a major accomplishment for our entire team to successfully undergo this meticulous inspection and accreditation process with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. We are currently the only AZA-accredited facility in the state of Alaska, and I am proud of the hard work our team puts in each and every day to meet and exceed the high standards set by the AZA for animal care, conservation, education, and safety," said Tara Riemer, President and CEO of the Alaska SeaLife Center. “When guests visit the Alaska SeaLife Center, they are supporting a world-class organization that is truly making a difference for marine wildlife in Alaska.”

The AZA accreditation process includes a detailed application and a meticulous, on-site, multiple-day inspection by an independent team of expert zoological professionals. The inspecting team analyzes all aspects of the facility’s operation, including animal welfare and well-being; veterinary care; staff training; safety for visitors, staff, and animals; educational programs; conservation efforts; financial stability; risk management; governance; and guest services.


Detailed reports from the inspection team and the facility alike are then thoroughly evaluated by the Commission. Finally, top officials are interviewed by the Accreditation Commission at a formal hearing, after which accreditation is fully granted, provisionally granted for one year, or denied. Accreditation was fully granted to the Alaska SeaLife Center on September 19, 2022 via a virtual hearing.


About AZA

Founded in 1924, the Association of Zoos and Aquariums is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the advancement of zoos and aquariums in the areas of conservation, animal welfare, education, science, and recreation. AZA is the accrediting body for the top zoos and aquariums in the United States and 12 other countries. Look for the AZA accreditation logo whenever you visit a zoo or aquarium as your assurance that you are supporting a facility dedicated to providing excellent care for animals, a great experience for you, and a better future for all living things. The AZA is a leader in saving species and your link to helping animals all over the world. To learn more, visit


About ASLC

Opened in 1998, the Alaska SeaLife Center operates as a 501(c)(3), non-profit research institution and public aquarium in Seward, Alaska. The Center generates and shares scientific knowledge to promote understanding and stewardship of Alaska’s marine ecosystems. The ASLC is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. To learn more, visit

Go Back »