Brenda Altmeier, left, receives the Silver Sherman Award from John Armor. JESSICA KONDEL/NOAA.

Brenda Altmeier, Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary maritime heritage coordinator, recently received the Silver Sherman Award. The honor recognizes NOAA employees who perform work above their normal requirements to help fulfill NOAA’s mission, achieve a milestone that contributes significantly or critically toward a particular program goal, or demonstrate leadership toward process improvement of a significant magnitude. 

Awarded on an ad hoc basis by each member of the NOAA senior executive service once a year, the Office of National Marine Sanctuaries Director John Armor selected Altmeier from among more than 400 colleagues and made the award presentation in Key Largo.

“In Brenda’s 30-year career supporting Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary, she has been dedicated to promoting inclusivity and diversity in marine archaeology,” Armor said. “She has led many successful projects and has made a lasting difference in many lives.”

Altmeier has been with the sanctuary since 1993, where she has established and nurtured a collaboration with Diving With a Purpose program, an initiative designed to inspire and empower new generations of potential underwater archaeologists, focusing on individuals from underrepresented communities.

“It was a well-deserved recognition for an outstanding member of our team,” said Sarah Fangman, Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary superintendent. 

NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries serves as the trustee for a network of underwater parks encompassing more than 620,000 square miles of marine and Great Lakes waters. The network includes 15 national marine sanctuaries and two marine national monuments.