Chicago’s Shedd Aquarium Names Baby Sea Otter!

The name is in: Chicago’s Shedd Aquarium named its sea otter pup Luna! Welcome Luna to Chicagoland!

Here’s one more adorable reason to love Chicago’s Shedd Aquarium – Pup 681, a rescued sea otter pup. Watch This 

We are big supporters of the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago and here’s a simple way you can help our iconic institution– Vote to name their new sea otter pup. The Shedd is partnering with ABC’s Good Morning America to help pick out the perfect name for sea otter Pup 681. Voting on the GMA website begins today through Dec. 11. Please chime in and take a look at these adorable pics and the video of the cute ball of fuzz!

Here’s the schoop one the Shedd on the darling pup:

Pup 681 came to Shedd on October 28 through it’s collaboration with the Monterey Bay Aquarium.  She’s been swimming past significant milestones over the last few weeks and has already doubled in size – now weighing a little over 10 pounds, Because Shedd has a history of naming animals that are rescued affiliated with the locations of which they were found, the names under consideration were: 

  • Cali – To honor the California otter
  • Ellie – Año Nuevo State Park is well known for its elephant seals, also Elkhorn Slough – an area that is right up the coast from Monterey that is home to many sea otters
  • Luna – Derived from nearby Half Moon Bay
  • Poppy – California State Flower
  • Aña or Anya  – Derived from Año Nuevo State Park

And Luna was the winner!

Shedd Saves Lives

Shedd Aquarium Saves Lives When Others Can’t

The Shedd Aquarium doesn’t just research, inform and entertain.  It saves the lives of animals too when it receives injured animals from across the country when other facilities lack the expertise and resources to treat and house them.

Nickel the giant green sea turtle, on display in the Caribbean Reef tank near the main entrance, is a great example. Florida wildlife experts sent the badly-injured turtle to the Shedd ten years ago, knowing she would never survive in the wild.

Now, Nickel not only survives, she thrives. She has become a Shedd icon and one of the few members of this species on permanent display in the world.

Nickel the Giant Green Sea Turtle at the Shedd Aquarium

As one of the oldest and most popular aquariums in the United States, as well as an important research and conservation institution, Shedd isn’t just a local treasure–it’s a national gem.

This is one of the many reasons that Make It Better is proud to be the media sponsor of the Shedd gala on June 8: Be Like Bond, The Stingray Affair. We’re also excited simply because this is always one of the best parties of the summer, a spectacular event to support a world-class institution.

Learn more here.

Lives Made Better 92,901 and counting

Keeley & Cruz – Sudden Blindness Can’t Keep Them Down!


Keeley Kossof, Photo courtesy of

Keeley Kossof had it all — a thriving career as a hair stylst in her father’s Northbrook salon, happy marriage, new home, and nine month-old son.  And then blindness struck, almost overnight.  Eventually she lost not only her sight and career, but also her husband.  Learn more here.

But you can’t keep a good woman down! She’s developed an innovative hair care product which eliminates bad odors from hair without shampooing — Mane Intentions — which will launch this spring.

Cruz the Sea Lion. Photo courtesy of Shedd Aquarium

Cruz the Sea Lion. Photo courtesy of Shedd Aquarium

Cruz the sea lion pup was shot in the San Francisco Bay area.  The shrapnel destroyed his sight.  But you can’t keep a good pup down either!  The Marine Mammal Center in Sausalito rescued him, but couldn’t provide a permanent home for him.  Fortunately though, with its world-class facilities and care, the Shedd Aquarium could.

“Since he arrived at the aquarium, Cruz has been comfortably relying on our animal care team to guide him, demonstrating incredible progress,” says Ken Ramirez, Shedd’s Executive Vice President of Animal Care and Training.  “He has a fearless personality and eagerness to learn — two characteristics that indicated we could provide him with a strong quality of life through training.”

How can you not be inspired by these two local treasures?  As Kossof says, “Even though you can suffer a loss, a tragedy, become handicapped, it doesn’t mean your life is over.  I had this unfortunate event.  It changed my life completely.  And here I am!”

For more information on visual impairment and resources to assist those who are blind, visit The Chicago Lighthouse.

The Winning Attitude – The Chicago Bears Should Learn from Chicago’s Great Cultural Institutions

People, and institutions, get back what they give out. True winners are others-centered.

The Chicago Bears should learn from our city’s great cultural institutions.

Brian Urlacher, courtesy of Wikipedia

Above is Brian Urlacher.

As the Sun-Times Rick Morrisey said yesterday about the Chicago Bears and it’s star linebacker, “Urlacher doesn’t care about the fans. And neither do the Bears, who charge an average of $111 a ticket and laugh at you poor, witless slobs all the way to the bank.”

Lose for Urlbacher/lose for the Bears/lose for the fans/nothing left over for the community.

Contrast this to the Goodman, Joffrey, Shakespeare Theatre, Lyric Opera, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Art Institute, Lincoln Park Zoo and Shedd Aquarium. These institutions flourish because of their winning, others-centered attitude. They nurture greatness – the highest calibre productions, outreach & education, and opportunities for volunteers and funders.

Win for the institutions/win for the community/win for kids/win for volunteers and fundraisers.

Grandad – the Shedd’s oldest resident, courtesy of Shedd Aquarium

Courtesy of the Joffrey