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Alaska Ocean Leadership Awards Announced

Anchorage, AK – January 17, 2011 – Sunday evening, before an enthusiastic audience of nearly 600 guests at the second annual Alaska Marine Gala at the Dena’ina Center in Anchorage, the Alaska Ocean Leadership Awards Committee presented awards to five organizations and individuals who have made significant contributions to awareness and sustainability of the state’s marine resources.

Alaska’s Oceans are some of the most important and productive in the world.  Our marine environments supply us with year round recreation, research and revenue opportunities.  Recognizing the vital importance of our oceans, these awards were created to honor the individuals, institutes and groups that strive to understand them and are dedicated to sustaining them.  Committee Chair Mrs. Arliss Sturgulewski presented the awards to:

• The Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies won the award for Ocean Literacy, sponsored by COSEE (Center for Ocean Science Education Excellence, an NSF-funded program).  Elizabeth Trowbridge has been designing and delivering outstanding educational curriculum since 1995.  Her work has influenced hundreds of thousands of students understanding of ocean literacy and has no doubt made a difference in the future of our seas.  We are grateful for all of their work spreading knowledge about Alaska’s oceans.

• The Ocean Media Award, for excellence in journalism that has raised public awareness of Alaska’s oceans, went to The Marine Conservation Alliance.  The UAF School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences sponsored the award. The Marine Conservation Alliance, and their new social media campaign – “SeaAlliance” has already achieved over 15 million on-line impressions.  This campaign builds an online community to promote and defend Alaska’s sustainable fisheries and coastal communities.

• Dr. Jeremy Mathis of the University of Alaska Fairbanks, School of Fisheries & Ocean Sciences was awarded the Ocean Research Award for his work conducting research in high latitude carbon cycling and ocean acidification in the Arctic.  His groundbreaking contributions to marine research and communication about Ocean Acidification are remarkable.  His credentials and commitment to research have greatly enhanced the profile of ocean acidification research in Alaska.  This award was sponsored by Dr. Clarence Pautzke and his wife Dr. Maureen McCrae.


Shell Alaska Venture was recognized with the Ocean Stewardship and Sustainability Award, sponsored by Mr. Jason Brune.  Since returning to Alaska in 2005, Shell has engaged in an aggressive environmental studies program in the Arctic offshore.  Shell has worked in a collaborative manner with stakeholders from industry, local, state and federal governments, universities and non-government organizations to share resources and facilitate the development of an understanding of the Arctic marine ecosystem.  Shell’s efforts are resulting in a better understanding of the Alaskan Arctic offshore, enabling responsible management and decision making about this critical resource.

 

• The late Governor Walter J. Hickel and his wife Ermalee have endowed the Lifetime Achievement Award for the next 10 years, and the committee decided to recognize an individual who has made an exceptional contributions to management of Alaska’s coastal and ocean resources over a period 25 years or more.  This award went to Dr. Clarence Pautze, Executive Director of the North Pacific Research Board who made landmark contributions to the management of Alaska’s coastal and ocean resources.  Throughout his career he has been a champion of marine research and science-based fisheries management.  His work with both the North Pacific Fisheries Management Council and the North Pacific Research Board has generated an immense contribution to science, provided invaluable research data and provided mentoring for hundreds of young scientists.


“These awards again demonstrate the remarkable contribution being made by Alaskan business, scientific, media and education leaders to sustaining the benefit and services that all Alaskans enjoy from our marine ecosystems” said Dr Ian Dutton, ASLC President and CEO.  The Alaska SeaLife Center is again most appreciative of the support provided by the sponsors of these awards and thanks the Awards Committee, Arliss Sturgulewski, Molly McCammon, Dr. Doug Woodby and Jason Brune for their assistance in selecting the awardees in each category.  Nominations for the 2012 awards will be advertized in December 2011.

The Alaska SeaLife Center is a private non-profit research institution and visitor attraction which generates and shares scientific knowledge to promote understanding and stewardship of Alaska’s marine ecosystems.  For more information regarding the new Steller sea lions, or any other part of the Alaska SeaLife Center please reference the Alaska SeaLife Center website at www.alaskasealife.org.

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