Sea Grant at 50: Capitol Hill Kickoff Event March 8, 2016

Sea Grant at 50: Capitol Hill Kickoff Event March 8, 2016

Ladies and Gentlemen, I think we are going
to get started. Well, first of all welcome to a great event.
This is the 50th anniversary of Sea Grant. My name is Dale Baker, and I am the chair
of the National Sea Grant Advisory Board. It’s a board with about 15 members that gives
advice to the National Sea Grant Program. And…my career has been in Sea Grant and
I have worked wiht Sea Grant since 1973 so it’s been 43 years that I’ve worked with Sea
Grant–not quite 50, but 43. Ok, and I’d like to thank initially the many Sea Grant people
across the nation who put together this event for us. I think it was about 20 people who
worked on this and put it together, and it looks like a great event. I’d like to thank
you all for being here today, our speakers, members of Congress, staff, and a number of
Sea Grant people from programs around the nation that are here with us today. AThis
event is being streamed live from YouTube – I think the camera is right over here–
over the past 50 years, Sea Grant’s research, education and outreach has been meaningful results and
impacts. They have produced a number of them, such as sustainable fisheries, healthy coastal
habitat, environmental literacy and workforce development, and resilient coastal communities.
Sea Grant is unique in its ability to transfer information, from research to application
to those who can use it in our coastal area. What we’re going to see now is a video that
was produced by the 50th anniversary team, and it was produced by – the producer was
John Karl from Wisconsin Sea Grant and assistant producer was Darcy Wilkins from Louisiana
Sea Grant. So with that, we’ll have 50 Years of Science Serving America’s Coasts, Sea Grant.
(music) For fifty years, the National Sea Grant College
Program has been promoting economic development in coastal businesses. It has been fostering
stewardship of coastal habitat, and it has been aiding the responsible use of America’s
ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes resources. This highly effective program was the brainchild
of oceanographer Athelstan Spilhaus. His idea caught hold and Senator Claiborne Pell of
Rhode Island championed it in Washington. In 1966, the National Sea Grant College Program
Act was signed into law. Since then, Sea Grant has become a national network of 33 programs
involving more than 3,000 universiy scientists, engineers, law centers, educators, outreach
experts, and students. Among Sea Grant’s many accomplishments during the last 50 years,
several stand out. From it’s beginning, Sea Grant has nurtured
the development of a domestic aquaculture industry to help ensure that we have a sustainable
supply of seafood. Over the last four years alone, Sea Grant provided $26,000,000 for
aquaculture research and technology, creating a $200 million dollar economic impact and
more than 8,000 jobs. Every year, Sea Grant provides federal fisheries
managers with science based information vital to maintaining our most valuable wild commercial
fisheries: lobsters in the Northeast, salmon in Alaska and the Pacific Northwest, shrimp
in the Southeast and Gulf of Mexico, and oysters and clams on all of our ocean coasts.
Sea Grant has helped thousands of commercial fishermen increase their harvest and adopt
new technology that reduces the incidental catch of turtles and birds.
In the 1990s the program spearheaded the development of a national seafood safety training program.
Since 2001, over 90% of U.S. seafood processing firms and more than 26,000 individuals have
received this training, preventing an estimated 60,000 seafood-related illnesses each year.
IN 1989, Sea Grant helped communities in Prince Willliam Sound as oil spilled from the grounded
Exxon Valdez. In 2010, Sea Grant staff and scientists all along the Gulf of Mexico responded
rapidly to the Deepwater Horizon tragedy by providing science-based advice on dealing
with the disaster to community leaders and local residents.
On the Pacific Islands and across the nation, Sea Grant programs are responding to the increasing
frequency and severity of coastal storms with a handbook adapted from Hawaii Sea Grant.
They are helping thousands of coastal residents fortify their homes against strong winds,
storm surges, coastal flooding, and other hazards.
Sea Grant also advises coastal communities as they prepare for and respond to a changing
climate. This helps communities adapt to sea level rise, coastal flooding, coastal erosion,
and salt water intrusion. Harnful algal blooms pose a hazard to swimmers
and the seafood industry on all U.S. coasts. Sea Grant programs help protect the public
by informing business leaders and decision makers about the causes and effects of these
hazards. With leadership from Alaska Sea Grant, the
program has worked to reduce the number of deaths in the nation’s fishing industry for
45 years. It was instrumental in establishing the National Fishing Vessel Safety Act and
it has sponsored Coast Guard-ceritifed safety training that has reached thousands of tribal
and commercial fishers nationwide. Sea Grant programs across the country are
active members of the National Working Waterfront network, which helps communities enhance coastal
access, balance competing uses, and plan for the future of waterfronts, waterways, and
ports. Sea
Grant also works with nature-based tourism
businesses, recreational fishermen, and the charter boat industry to help them become
more sustainable and profitable. Using our coastal resources wisely and sustainably
depends on having healthy coastal ecosystems. In 2009 alone, Sea Grant led the restoration
of nearly 32,000 acres of degraded aquatic ecosystems across the nation. This included
re-establishing aquatic vegetation in Chesapeake Bay, to reduce its low-oxygen dead zones in
summer. Restoring tens of thousands of acres of degraded coastal habitat in the Gulf of
Mexico vital to sea turtles, marine mammals, and birds and rebuilding much of the fourteen
hundred acres of washed-away wetlands and protected barrier islands in Lake Michigan’s
Green Bay. Much of what we know today about nutrient
runoff in coastal waters is an outgrowth of university research funded by Sea Grant over
the last 50 years. Today this knowledge is a key component of the Nonpoint Education
for Municipal Officials program created by Sea Grant, which links decisions about land
use and water quality. NEMO now assists decision makers in 30 states.
Increased international trade has brought another threat to our aquatic ecosystems.
Perhaps the best known of these was the 1990s zebra mussel invasion of the Great Lakes.
Sea Grant saved industries millions of dollars by providing rapid highly effective responses
to this and other invasions through coordinated research, outreach and education.
Education is at the heart of the Sea Grant model. Sea Grant provides teachers with curricula, and
works with students from kindergarten through high school to enhance marine environmental
literacy and stewardship. It also promotes the wide range of careers in these fields.
Sea Grant’s John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship Program trains the best and brightest graduates
in marine science, conservation, and policy. It has launched the careers of many of our
nation’s leaders in marine, coastal, and Great Lakes-related fields. To date, the program
has provided more than 1,000 fellowships in Congress and federal agencies in Washington
D.C. Annually, Sea Grant provides financial support
to nearly 1,000 masters and doctoral students. Over the last 50 years this support translates
into nearly 10,000 graduates with advanced degrees, most of them working in our coastal
communities. Sea Grant has given America safer seafood,
more productive fisheries, more resilient coastal communities, healthier coastal ecosystems,
and stronger coastal economies. America needs Sea Grant today more than ever
to provide the technical expertise, scientific research, and workforce education necessary
to address the coastal ocean and Great Lakes issues of today and decades to come.
(music) Well that was excellent. We do have some wonderful
speakers for you to hear now, well-known to those of us who have worked with Sea Grant.
The first one is Dr. Rick Spinrad, who is a NOAA chief scientist. RIck. (applause)
Thank you, Dale. I will start by pointing out that I was asked to give a few historical
perspectives –this is the third time this month I was asked to give historical perspectives.
I’m starting to get the message, folks. I get it. So in addition to thanking Dale, there
is a number of folks I want to thank. We certainly want to thank Senator Schatz for his leadership
for sponsoring this event, as you’ll hear when he makes comments. Sea Grant has been
part of his life, early in his career, and we continue to appreciate the leadership he
demonstrates, the standards he sets for stewardship, as an example for leaders today and tomorrow.
I also want to welcome all of the Congressional staffers. I had a chance to say hi to a few
of you; I look forward to saying hi to several more of you later this afternoon and this
evening. Your continued involvement and dedication to sustaining and growing this very important
endeavor is critical and we in the agencies recognize and appreciate your effort. I want
to reach out and make a special thanks and hello to my good friend and colleague, Dr.
Rita Colwell, whose history with Sea Grant is legend. Of course Sea Grant started as
many of know, within NSF, and Rita was the director of NSF, not at that time. There is
a connection there but more importantly, of course, Rita was the founder of the Maryland
Sea Grant Program. If you want to get a kick out it, I was just noticing there’s a wonderful
picture of Rita over here, like two or three years ago, right, Rita? And Sylvain, it’s
a pleasure to see you again. Your leadership in the Sea Grant Association is another critical
organization here. Thank you for inviting me to be part of this celebration. Personally
Sea Grant has been part of my career as an ocean scientist for some time, since when
I was actually going to sea and doing real research even until my recent opportunity
at Oregon State University, where I had, where I had the distict pleasure of hiring Shelby
Walker as the Oregon State Sea Grant director. So it’s been part of my life and my career
for some time. And a warm welcome of course to all of our sister agency participants-
USGS, EPA, other agencies that are represented here. Thank you for joining us in this wonderful
celebration. I do want to talk a little bit about some of the roots of Sea Grant. You
got some of that sense and I’m sure you can embellish further on the roots of Sea Grant
much better than I can, but there’s some important things to call out. There were some colorful
characters at the start of Sea Grant , and you saw reference to one – Athelstan Spilhaus
was one, some of you–the grayer ones in the audience–have had the pleasure (or the balder
ones as in my case) have had the pleasure to have met him and have had an opportunity
to see what his personal style meant for the community. His -his resume was really remarkable.
He truly was a Renaissance Man when you looked at what he did. He was by training a geophysicist
and oceanographer. He invented the bathythermograph while he was at Woods Hole; many of you may
not know that. He was also our first UNESCO ambassador to the UN and he even had some
involvement with the Roswell incident. We can talk about that tonight over drinks. But
he -many folks don’t know he was the author of a cartoon strip, a comic strip called “Our
New Age.” It ran from 1958 to 1975. And what’s remarkable about that – it was syndicated
throughout the world. What is remarkable about that is that JFK -Kennedy, President Kennedy,
was one of his fans for that particular comic strip, and there’s a great quote from Kennedy:
he said “The only science I ever learned was from your comic strip in the Boston Globe.”
So those of you who think outreach is limited to publications and op=ed pieces, there’s
a lesson to be learned there. As you heard or probably knew, Spilhaus suggested the Sea
Grant program back in 1963 at an American Fisheries Society meeting. He put forth this
idea. Again, as this film pointed out, this was a very important novel concept and quite
relevant here now, more than 50 years later, in terms of the specific focus that he put
on the “blue economy”. So if you look at his comments and the way he introduced this concept
at the American Fisheries Society meeting back in 1963, he used phrases which quite
honestly today are probably not politically correct- phrases like “exploitation of the
sea” –but what he was really talking about was really looking at the economic benefits
and I’m sure in today’s context he would have characterized that in the fully sustainable
manner that is part of the genetic makeup of Sea Grant. So two years after he spawned
the idea as you heard Senator Pell, Claiborne Pell of Rhode Island, was instrumental in
the passage of the 1966 National Sea Grant College Program Act – a partnership of industry,
academia, government, and the rest one might say, is history –but wait, there’s more!
Of course one of the key figures, with respect to the history of Sea Grant, was a monumental
oceanographer whom we lost just this last year, that was John Knauss. Another remarkable
individual in our community. I have to share with you that, um, twenty years ago I was
working for an icon in the field, Admiral Jim Watkins, and we had just invented the
National Ocean Sciences Bowl. Many of you know that activity. And we were starting to
spin it up and try to figure out, how do we get a set of well quality-controlled questions
to ask these wonderful high school students, so we put together a team of experts. Ocean
science, marine science, policy, economics, fisheries experts, to vet a thousand questions.
And we asked John if he would be willing to be on that team, and suprisingly, he said
“Sure! It sounds good.” So here we had this room, over these on Mass. Ave., I could take
you right to the room where we had this meeting, with John and three or four equally esteemed
characters reviewing a thousand questions, and what I remember most about this was there
was one question that went forward and it had to do with the Cromwell Current. These
were multiple choice questions. I don’t remember what the multiple choices were, but we’ll
just say that answer C was correct. The Cromwell Current is A, B, C, D. And the members of
this panel were arguing about whether A and B were better than C. And John sat there quietly,
those of you who knew him know he was very good at this, and he sat there quietly and
said “No, C is the right answer.” And the others argued for five or ten minutes and
finally John said, “You know what? I discovered the Cromwell Current. C is the correct answer.”
So these are some of the kinds of characters that we had, really productive, energetic,
dynamic, and charismatic individuals, and as you saw and as so many of you know, John’s
name is synonymous with the Knauss Fellows program, arguably THE most successful fellowship
program ever developed in the oceanographic community. Knauss Fellow alumni now populate
some of our most preiminent positions. I’m going to do something now that will probably
get me in trouble now. But in the audience, and in this town, just to give you some sense
of whom some of these alumni of the program are, Dan Ashe is the director of the US FIsh
and Wildlife Service, Helen Brohl is the executive director for the Committee on Marine Transportation,
Margaret Spring, who had been on the HIll and here at NOAA, is now the VP of Conservation
Science at Monterey Bay Aquarium, three of our current Sea Grant directors here in the
room–Penny Dalton, I saw Penny Dalton earlier–Shelby Walker, Pam Plotkin of ATexas, are all Knauss
Fellows. Sue Sponaugle who is here in town; Russell Calender, I saw Russell walking earlier,
Kola Garber was a Sea Grant Fellow, on and on it goes, and I apologize to those of you
I haven’t called out. Ah, but this is just a phenomenal program. Some of them ah have
turned into members now of the Sea Grant Advisory Board. Amber Mace –I saw Amber earlier–this
is just an incredible collection of people. You look at the size of the program, which
is not that large, and you look at the impact that these individuals –the ones I have mentioned
and the many others I probably should have mentioned but didn’t, are incredibly impactful
in the community. Sea Grant came into being before NOAA existed and in fact, Sea Grant
was in the National Science Foundation for a short period of time when NOAA was established.
It’s safe to say that today, Sea Grant occupies an ever-increasing important niche in the
safety and resilience of the coastal and Great Lakes community economies and ecosystems and
is serving an incredible role within NOAA’s mission. Another little sidebar if I can.
It struck me like a lightning bolt. What’s the formula for the success? I was in a meeting
today and in the meeting happened to be Ernie Moniz, the Secretary of Energy. We were talking
about the formulation of a new function within the government, within the Office of Science
and Technology Policy. And Secretary Moniz looked at the organization chart and he’s
an extemely intelligent, extremely eloquent gentleman, and he said, “There’s a whole lot
of boxes here.” That was his quote. HOw is that relevant? Think about Sea Grant. There
are not a whole lot of boxes in Sea Grant. And I would argue that’s one of the most incredible
things, especially in this day and age in DC, that it can be as streamlined and effective
as the National Sea Grant College Program here in the headquarters, and then in the
programs themselves around the U.S. At NOAA, we see the role of Sea Grant as being essential
to everything we are putting forward. We are emphasizing some key issues right now. We’re
emphasizing community resilience as a key component of everything we do at Sea Grant
Central. We are emphasizing evolution of a lot of our services, especially the Weather
Service. One of my predecessors at NOAA, a fellow named Dave Evans, many of you knew
Dave, was the first OAR administrator to argue for putting a Sea Grant Extension agent in
Norman, Oklahoma. You talk about extending services. That’s pretty foresightful. We are
investing in observational infrastructure. How much observation did you see on the film
there? There’s a lot of observational development going on. And of course we’re trying to establish
new means for achieving organizational excellence. And that comes back to my boxes argument.
Sea Grant is a model for how to do this, how to work effectively, how to translate research
into an effective tool for a variety of users. In my world at NOAA, I’ve had an interesting
challenge. The challenge to try to build portfolio logic for our research. Many of you who have
worked at NOAA know that’s an extraordinary challenge. An agency that has to manage fisheries,
marine fisheries, forecast the weather, manage coastal zone programs, and everything in between.
So we’ve spent a lot of time looking at how to do this, and we’ve recognized that the
strength that Sea Grant brings to the table has a lot of evidence in the specific successes,
and you’re gonna hear some examples when my colleague Craig McLean speaks in a little
bit. But just to reel off a few of them, we saw them in the film–the developing sustainable
aquaculture, recovering from oil spills; fortifying homes and businesses from coastal storms,
understanding harmful algal blooms, planning for the future of waterways, restoring aquatic
ecosystems. All of this has been the mainstay capability right in the mainstream activities
of Sea Grant, and because of what Sea Grant has done, we’ve been able to build additional
capabilities. In fact, just today, we have finalized the announcements –and many of
you saw them, for four and a half million dollars in regional coastal resilience grants.
And those programs include direct activities from South Carolina, Washington, Hawaii, and
Virginia Sea Grant programs. You think about that. That means that we could not have done
these things without the 50 years of success that we’ve seen in Sea Grant. Sea Grant has
made it very easy for me in my office to define what strategic research guidance should look
like for the agency. And in fact we just issued the first ever strategic research guidance
memorandum for NOAA. Never been done before. And our reliance on the demonstrated capability
of how to translate research into activities to applications and operations into commercialization
has been critical to our ability to develop strategic research guidance. I’d also point
out, I’m on the HIll, I gotta do this, we just rolled our budget out a few weeks ago,
and in there is something that we could not have done at NOAA without the demonstrated
success from the kinds of projects I just listed a moment ago. We’ve defined a whole
new corporate approach to accelerating the transition of research into operations and
application. And if we succeed in getting that appropriation, we will be looking to
programs like the ones you all represent as the fodder, if you will, for more speedily
getting these research projects into the hands of coastal communities., fishing communities,
emergency management communities–the kinds of people who depend on our products and services.
So let me close out by saying, this is something of a retrospective, and hopefully some of
the history I’ve provided gives you a sense of how we’ve progressed over the last fifty
years but really this should be as much about looking to the next fifty years. Looking to
how societal needs will change, looking to how that three-legged stool of research or
science, service and stewardship plays out as demonstrated by the wonderful effectiveness
and reach that Sea Grant has, and even taking that a little bit further. Perhaps in the
vein of how Athelstan Spilhaus imagined, creating whole new economies. What will Sea Grant be
doing over the next fifty years to develop the emerging new blue economy, for example?
So I want to join in the celebration of fifty years –and in my book, fifty years is young–some
of you will understand that later, I want to join in celebrating the fifty years of
wonderful success that Sea Grant has had and I want to make sure we think often, we speak
loudly, and we look with great vision as to what the next fifty years for Sea Grant will
bring. Thank you very much for this opportunity. (applause) Thank you Rick, that was excellent. Our next
speaker is Craig McLean. Craig is the NOAA Assistant Administrator. Craig.
Thank you very much Dale, good evening ladies and gentlemen. I’d like to second the greetings
that Rick extended to so many people, some of the esteemed speakers yet to come, I look
forward to your remarks but let me start by saying how special this event is for me, because
in the portfolio that I have, I have a number of gifts. One is that I get to follow Rick
Spinrad to the podium. The second gift is, I followed Rick Spinrad to this job, and he
acquainted me with the thrills of this job; I initially came into OAR as his deputy when
he was Assistant Administrator, and part of the thrill of that position was to have Sea
Grant in my portfolio. So greedily, I had to hang on to Sea Grant in the portfolio now
that I am at least a half a step above where I was before. I find this program remarkable.
Number one, my wife, early in her career, worked for Sea Grant. So there’s a special
accolade that I have to lend to the program. Number two, Dr. Spilhaus was a trap kit drummer.
And there are several in the audience as well. Number three, such a lasting impression. Rick
talked about how this program has contributed for fifty solid years without distraction.
I know of no program within NOAA that has the nimbleness, responsiveness, and the attentiveness
to emerging coastal challenges as Sea Grant, routinely demonstrated year by year, fifty
years back and fifty years forward. The flexibility that’s built into the legislation that authorizes
Sea Grant is brilliant. It’s a very wide broad authorization. It lets us look at development
through wise measures, lets us look at economic sustainability, through cautious approach
to where we might influence the environment, and it also looks at how we can protect and
preserve the environment. It is brillliantly constructed with its complexity, and at the
same time with its simplicity, but also its breadth. So for all of the potential applicaitons
of the Sea Grant-like model, let’s remember please where it started. We’ve seen it replicate
in many places. We’ve seen it replicate in the climate community, I think our RISAs really
use the Sea Grant model. Let’s look at other places where we’ve seen the genesis of a communtiy-driven
idea or need, met with competent science, routinely reinforeced by a peer review expert
scientific process, and then have that scientific result not translated in the complexity of
jargon, but translated back to the public with a plain English statement from a knowledgeable
interpreter at the masters or PhD level through the Sea Grant Extension program. So we have
masterful scientists performing science, leading the edge of many new developments, and we
have masterful communicators explaining to the public why and how this is all important
in 33 different states. With leveraging, with leveraging, every dollar that we invest of
federal money, is returned by more than the 50 cents required in contribution from the
coastal states. What a magic formula! This should be a golden hammer and a gold medal
efficieny award when we look at the resonance to our economy that is brought by this program,
modestly staffed and modestly measured across every coastal state. SO there are a couple
of real highlights that really charm me in being able to say I know this program, I enjoy
this program, I love the people who make up this program thoughout each of the states
and in the headquarters region. And a note for the headquarters region. Talk about the
little engine that could. The Sea Grant program, those of you who have been around for a while,
may remember that we had a level of staffing that was at least adequate and admirable to
the challenge at hand. Today, we scarcely have more than a dozen people staffing the
Sea Grant headquarters of the program. And frankly I have to express my admiration but
also my timidity in that I am worried that with certain levels of spending caps it’s
challenging for us to have an efficient level of the oversight we would like to deliver,
and I really look forward as we are with the Congress to try and lighten that load, lighten
that burden, and give us the opportunity to richly and fully staff Sea Grant so that we
could be as engaged and as participatory throughout the NOAA network and the interagency network.
This is a model that succeeds. The evidence of the film and what RIck has cited clearly
says that. But how can we use more of Sea Grant? Please don’t try to reinvent Sea Grant.
We already have it. Please choose to use this very broad authorization. Invest in it. This
is a program with an authorization that allows other agencies, other programs, other entities,
to be putting money into Sea Grant for the execution. So why? Let me give you a couple
of examples that really do charm me. The first is when we look back to the devastating impact
in the Gulf of Mexico of Hurricane Katrina. There were many water persons – watermen and
water women, that were displaced. Their vessels were high and dry on land. So somewhere in
the network was a keen idea, in the state of Alaska. You can’t get much further from
the Gulf of Mexico than Alaska. But the Alaska Sea Grant folks said, “We can help these people.
They are family. They are us. They are fellow watermen. Let’s take a travel lift. Many of
you may know what a travel lift is; many of you may not know what a travel lift is. It
is not an insignificant piece of equipment. It’s a four-point wheeled vehicle with straps
under it that can lift a vessel and transport a vessel. Alaska Sea Grant disassembled, shipped,
reassembled and showed up to help the people of the Gulf to get their vesses back in the
water, back serving their families, earning the wage, when the area had been so direly
devastated by the storm. So Alaska Sea Grant came to render assistance to the Gulf. Not
once, but they did so routinely. When the Exxon Valdez hit Alaska, the people of Alaska
understood the social impact of the loss of livelihood and the loss of way of life and
for those in Alaska, I can only begin to approximate what that was like. I didn’t live through
it and you did. But you shared that experience. Alaska Sea Grant came to the Gulf of Mexico
during the Deepwater Horizon and shared not just what was captured in the film, but also
the understanding of how your family is going to react to the sense of a different normal
because of that impact. And from a social science perspective, and a humanity based
perspective, Alaska Sea Grant came once again to render assistance to the people of the
Gulf of Mexico. So we’ve seen that many times. And one that I just want to highlight here
is our friends in Virginia Sea Grant. Now in NOAA we have a rather, goodness sakes,
if we look back at one of the old pictures that Dr. Knauss would be in, of the Stratton
Commission, for example, it’s a bunch of white guys with a bunch of black ties, and there
was diversity in that picture. Because John Knauss wore a bow tie. But everybody else
was a white guy, middle-aged, and away we go. And if you look at the demographics inside
of NOAA, we struggle to break out from that mold and we’re trying to enrich diversity
and inclusion. I think Sea Grant is a wonderfully diverse and maximally inclusive organization.
All you have to do is meet the directors and people who work for Sea Grant around the county.
But more importantly, inside of NOAA, we are taking seriously, diversity and inclusiveness
in our workforce. SO then I am met with the marvelous news of what Virginia Sea Grant
has accomplished. A modest grant of $50,000 to students in a largely minority-oriented
academic program at Hampton University and an engineering component at Old Dominion university.
They teamed up together, and they decided to focus on an economically disadvantaged
neighborhood that had a historic perspective in the TIdewater Virginia area and as you
may know, between subsidence and sea level rise, the Tidewater area of Virginia faces
many challenges. So this group of students developed a proposal that was really just
a project, but they had this dream of seeing it come to life and the state of Virginia
thankfully included this proposal in their HUD submission. Fast forward. This is a neighborhood
that would not have the protection of the banks because of the value of the mortgages
held by the homeowners. That neighborhood would have been bypassed. But instead HUD
gave and award, and today fifteen million dollars are being applied to that neighborhood
because of the vision of this composite of Hampton, of ODU but of course because of VIrginia
Sea Grant, in order to enable the delivery of the success. I celebrate that and I hope
you do too. I think it’s been absolutely marvelous and truly wonderful. Future of Sea Grant:
we’re missing a big opportunity. I know you know where it is, and it’s in the weather.
Part of NOAA’s ambition as Rick talked about in being able to help the weather Service
evolve is to communicate more effectively the impacts and how can we build an environment
that is resilient to the impact of weather. And as we watch the development of climate
impacts on our day to day, we come to realize that we will have more extreme storms coming
in to influence our coastal environment. So how do we best prepare for that? How do we
prepare the public for the choices they make? Where do they invest? How do they invest?
and where do they choose to live? The National Weather Service of NOAA is embarking upon
a campaign to achieve a Weather Ready Nation. Most of our people live on the coast. Most
of our economic investment is on the coast. Most of what we stand to lose is on the coast
but thank God we’ve got Sea Grant on the coast, able to communicate these values to our coastal
communities. So I want to encourage and inspire at least that direction in addition to where
we’ve traditionally been with Sea Grant, doing excellent science. Sea Grant led the way with
alternative energy. The nation wasn’t ready for it. It’s in Europe, and it’s in Asia now.
Sea Grant led the way with aquaculture. The nation wasn’t ready for it. It’s in Europe
and Asia now. Follow Sea Grant. You’ll see where the nation is going in the future. So
to all of you folks in other programs in other areas, whether you’re inside of NOAA or beyond,
carry one phone number in your wallet. And the next time you’ve got a crisis, calamity,
or a significant scientific or community challenge, just dial Sea Grant. Sea Grant, congratulations
on fifty years and many more to go. Thank you very much.
(applause) Thank you very much, Craig. Our next speaker
is Dr. Kola Garber and she is the Acting Director of the National Sea Grant Program. Kola.
(applause) Thank you, Dale. I want to add my welcome
as we gather today to celebrate the beginning of Sea Grant’s fiftieth anniversary year.
Growing up in a two-stoplight farm town in Ohio, my knowledge of the oceans, coasts,
and Great Lakes were through the volumes of Jacques Cousteau sitting on my book shelf,
and water skiing on Mullett Lake, Michigan. Little did I know that I would graduate from
hearing the stories of a burning river to working with Ohio Sea Grant. That same group
of dedicated individuals who wrote to Dr. Seuss in the 1980s and convinced him to omit
Lake Erie from The Lorax. Thanks in part to the efforts of Ohio Sea Grant, through the
efforts of research, outreach and education, Lake Erie is no longer like those other places
where humming fish have to walk on their fins and get woefully weary in search of some water
that isn’t so smeary. My first major interactions with Sea Grant was years later as a Dean John
Knauss Marine Policy legislative Fellow. I experienced firsthand how, since 1979, over
one thousand young professionals have been trained. Many of us as Dr. Spinrad has mentioned,
have become the country’s leaders in marine science and policy. And as Dr. Spinrad mentioned,
sadly late last year we lost John Knauss, the man after whom we named this flagship
program. Dr. Knauss was the founding dean of the Graduate School of Oceanography at
the University of Rhode Island. As well, he served on the Stratton Commission, which led
to the formation of NOAA, and then served as the Administrator of NOAA for five years.
But most important to us today, he worked with Senator Claiborne Pell and Dr. Athelstan
Spilhaus to create the National Sea Grant College Program.Let us take a moment to honor
Dr. Knauss by celebrating his legacy. Would all the Knauss alumni and current fellows
please stand for a few moments. (applause)
Thank you. As Dr. Knauss commented during the selection process for one of the classes,
on the resumes of many of these individuals –“with these resumes, I would never have
made the program myself.” Dr. Knauss would really be proud of his legacy.
Now, following in the footsteps of these visionary leaders, I am truly humbled to be asked to
lead this program through its transition. On behalf of over 2300 professionals working
directly with Sea Grant at the local, national and regional levels, I want to thank each
of you and your over 300 partners, for your–3,000 partners, excuse me– for your support. Last
year alone we turned 67 million dollars in federal funding into an economic impact of
320 million dollars. That is over a 450 per cent return on the federal investment. And
that isn’t done here in Washington, DC, as Craig alluded to. That is done in the universities,
the businesses, on the docks and in small communities all across our county. It is one
of the many things that makes Sea Grant such a strong and enduring program. It is national
in scope, and conducted by people on the ground to ensure implementation that works for the
communities we serve. It is Sea Grant’s leadership at all levels that make this model a success.
For example, one of my earliest memories of Sea Grant was watching Puerto Rico in action.
Local fishermen were concerned about new regulations. As the trusted and honest broker of scientific
information, whom the fishermen knew, Sea Grant was able to bring everyone together
to the table for a discussion of these new regulations. Throughout this afternoon, you’ve
heard many examples, and you may hear many more, of what Sea Grant is doing across our
communities. Following this reception, I encourage each of you to share you stories of how Sea
Grant has impacted you and your local communities. In partnerships with each of you Sea Grant
will continue to move boldly into the next fifty years, helping resolve issues faced
by our coastal communities through research, extension, education and workforce development.
Thank you for your time and attention today. It is greatly appreciated. Thanks.
(applause) Ladies and Gentlemen, I’m not in the program.
I’m Dennis Nixon, director of Rhode Island Sea Grant, and much to our great surprise,
a great friend of the National Sea Grant Program, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island,
is joining us to say a few words. Senator Whitehouse.
(applause) Thank you everyone. I am a huge fan of the
Sea Grant Program, and not just because I love Dennis Nixon, I was even a huge fan of
the Sea Grant program before Dennis took it over in Rhode Island. But I go back to Senator
Claiborne Pell of Rhode Island, who was my political mentor, and as you know, Sea Grant
was one of the things that he fought to make come to pass. So I have a personal loyalty
to Senator Pell’s legacy that compels me to support the Sea Grant program; I’ve also seen
it in operation. I have had Knauss fellows working for me and I’ve worked with them.
They make a big difference here on Capitol Hill and I appreciate that. Dean Knauss was
at the Rhode Island Graduate School of Oceanography, and Bruce Corliss is now carrying on his tradition
as the Dean of GSO, but I knew Dean Knauss personally and he helped supervise my wife’s
graduate education. She is a trained marine biologist with her PhD from the Graduate School
of Oceanography. You had me at Hello. And you always will. I very much appreciate that
this is a big fifty and look forward to doing whatever I can to be helpful in the future.
We have a very big common task in front of us, which is to educate people about what
is happening in the oceans. We are terrestrail beings, and we are largely immune to what
is happening in the ocean. And those of us who have a little bit of exposure tend to
think of it as, you know, swimming, playing at the beach, it doesn’t really look any different
year to year. It’s not a place that we inhabit and know well enough to understand that something
is badly wrong. There are very few Americans who really understand and know that. Those
of us who do have an obligation from that to spread the word.
whether it’s the cetaceans at the very top of the food chain that have eaten up so many
chemicals and so much heavy metals that they are now swimming in toxic waste, which would
be illegal to truck to the dump, when they get washed ashore dead, or go to the very
bottom of the food chain and look to the humble terapod which is now experiencing more than
50 percent shell damage in the Pacific Northwest where it is the base of a food chain that
a lot of human lives depend on or whether it’s my nearby Narragansett Bay up 3 degrees
in mean water temperature meant end of the winter flounder fishery, end of winter income
for my Rhode Island fishermen, to the faraway plastic swirling in the great garbage patch
of the Pacific with the Arctic gradually turning into melt, and having dramatic effects on
all of the ecosystems around it as a result, or out tropical reefs collapsing at astonishing
rates. I think we’re up to eighty per cent coral bleaching in the Andaman Sea, where
I used to dive as a boy forty years ago when it was an absolute winter wonderland. I mean,
it was a wonderland. It was perfection. And my family has gone back since, and Sandra
went diving with the kids, and she said, “Be glad you missed it, it would have broken your
heart.” The fish are still there; the reefs are still
there, but they’re dead. They are just providing shelter, the coral was gone and that’s happening
across the planet. We really really really need to get the word out. So Sea Grant, integrating
between science and the local communities, businesses, people who need to know this,
performs a really really important role. So bless you in your work and if there’s anything
I can do to be helpful, like I said, you had me at Hello and I’m happy to do whatever it
takes. Thank you for your continued terrific efforts at NOAA and through Sea Grant. You
got a great guy in Dennis in Rhode Island. I’ve known him a long time and he’s an all-star.
Thank you. (Applause)
Thank you, Senator Whitehouse. Unexpected surprise, and it’s always good to hear from
an advocate for the Sea Grant program. Thank you, Kola for your remarks. Our next
speaker is the president of the Sea Grant Association, Dr. Sylvain DeGuise.
Good afternoon, everyone. People say nice things about Sea Grant. I think that we should
celebrate our fiftieth evey year. What do you think? The – I’m seriously humbled by
the people talking before me and after me. And it’s been a pleasure and a great opportunity
to serve as part of the leadership of Sea Grant. I live in a university. We like to
think that sometimes we pause and think a little bit and I’ve been spending a little
bit of time before the ceremony trying to understand what – why Sea Grant? Why is it
so good? Why do people like it so much? There’s several answers that come to mind. We’ve got
fantastic people in NOAA and the National Sea Grant Office that support the program.That
counts for something, right? There are people on the Hill who support the program, vote
for budget increases. There must be something there. There’s people that are dedicated that
have had great careers that have come back and advised the Sea Grant program. They spend
tremendous time and effort to volunteer their time to advocate on behalf of the program
and try to guide the program in the National Sea Grant Advisory Board. That’s laudable.
I’m humbled by those people, and I thank them. But when I think really hard, I have the task
of leading the Sea Grant Association these days and I have to stand in front of a bunch
of over-achievers that are all part of a fantastic program and everybody’s used to being above
average all the time. So maybe that counts for something. A bunch of dedicated people
but when I think really really hard and when we try to be a little bit more introspective,
we had discussions on the “what” – what we do, work in coastal and ocean issues. Everybody
likes that. Maybe that counts for something too. But we do more than that. We do research,
outreach and education. People like that too. Yeah, but we do more than that. And what is
it – what was it really that makes the program so good – and I think it’s the “why”, It’s
not the “what”. It may be a little bit of the “how” but it’s mostly the “why”. Why do
we do what we do, and what better argument, what better conversation starter, than “I
live here.” I live here and I work here. I recreate here. I have a boat. I want nice
water to go swimming and fishing, and I want to do that for a long time. I also happen
to manage a program, a program that has resources, that brings resources to the needs of communities,
and we do research, we do outreach, we do education. You want to talk about resilience?
You want to talk about fisheries? You want to talk about aquaculture? What a better opening.
I think it’s the why we do it, and we discovered that we have a tremendous amount of passion
in this program. It’s not only knowledge, it’s passion. That’s where we work, that’s
where we live, that’s where we recreate. And what a better message for a conversation starter.
And I think that resonates beyond the walls of the program and I think that we like to
knock down walls in Sea Grant. We like to talk to everybody and be inclusive. It’s an
honor to serve in the leadership of the Sea Grant program. It’s an honor to be with you
to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary and I’m really looking forward to the next fifty.
As a lot of people do, just as a note I meant to say we had a quick challenge. A quick email
challenge. Who can find the person who has served for Sea Grant the longest? It’s a fifty
year program. I’m going to take guesses. A number. Rick. Give me a number.
Forty-two years. We’ve had eight people that have been involved with Sea Grant either as
graduate students, staff, or as a member of the advisory board. We’ve had eight people
that have been with the program for more than forty years on a fifty year old program. We
have twenty two people that have been with the program for more than twenty two years
– for more than twenty years. Sorry – for more than thirty years in a fifty year old
program. So my conclusion is that Sea Grant’s not a job, it’s a passion and it’s a career.
I hope that we continue to evolve that passion and that career for the next fifty years.
Thank you. (applause)
Thank you, Sylvain. I’m part of that passion for Sea Grant. OK, our next speaker is Rita
Colwell and I’ve known Rita for many years, from when she was Sea Grant director at Maryland
many years ago. She is the distinguished university professor at University of Maryland, and Johns
Hopkins University, Bloomberg College of Public Health. Rita.
(applause) Well, I’m not going to make a formal introduction,
I’m just going to say that it’s nice to be here with friends and family. It’s wonderful
to walk down Memory Lane. At first I thought I’d carry a lot of memories that would be
shared, but I notice that most of the people here are very young and so I’m sharing memories
mostly with myself and you, Rick, I guess. And I’m one of the forty plus years. Sea Grant
is an extraordinary organization and I think what I’d like to do is just share a few vignettes.
And one of them is that back in the eighties, Sea Grant was destined to disappear, die.
It was zeroed out. But it survived and it thrived and it’s here and more effective than
ever. And how did it survive? Well it survived because it serves people. And the constituents,
the watermen, the students, the citizens, all of the constituents that Sea Grant serves
rose up, spoke to Congress, and here we are. Fifty years later, healthy, active, and very
very important for the economy. Let me just, um, I think this is not going to go forward.
Let me try this. See if you can make it work. Yup. OK, this is the turf of the Maryland
Sea Grant and for me personally Sea Grant really is a very very important part of my own life story.
As a matter of fact when I was asked five years ago during the Deep Horizon spill, about
a month after–two or three weeks after the spill – I got a call from the chief scientist
at BP asking if I would establish and run a 500 million dollar ten-year program. Of
course I agreed only if I would be independent, which they agreed, so the program has been
running for five years. But my first reaction was, we need to communicate. Who best reaches
out and communicates to the community than Sea Grant? So the Sea Grant in the Gulf coast
is very much a part of the Deep Horizon what is now the post spill Gulf of Mexico Research
Initiative. So it was very clear and very obvious to me that the best way to reach the
citizens was the boots on the ground. The average citizen who needed to know what the
research was being done and how it would help them. Now the Maryland industry includes fisheries
and it’s a very important one, and it’s historic. Watermen go back to the origins of the state,
really. What’s also very important is that the blue crab is – we like to say it’s the
best crab in the country– I won’t argue. There’s folks from other parts of the country
who might think differently, but in any case we also have the famous rockfish, and we like
to think that every rock fish looks like that. I’m going to now tell a vignette based on
what you see here. I started my career working at the University of Maryland studying bacteria
associated with plantkon– copepods– and made the discovery that Vibrio species are
associated as part of the natural flora of the copepod. So why is this important? Turns
out that based on those discoveries, we were able to show that the disease Cholera is actually
a vector-borne disease. The vector happens to be the copepod. Well, when we published
our first little paper. on Vibrio parahoemoliticus as a seafood pathogen in the Chesapeake Bay,
as a Note in Science, it was picked up by the Washington Post. At the time, I was being
funded by a very tiny grant of about 25 thousand dollars from an agency that shall remain nameless,
it wasn’t NSF or NIH just a small agency. Well, before the Washington Post actually
hit my front steps, I got a phone call from this agency that said “You’re giving fisheries
a bad name in the Chesapeake Bay. We’re cutting off your funding.” Well, thank heavens for
Sea Grant because Ned Ostenso, who was one of the early leaders – I think he was the
first Sea Grant national director– and to Ned, whom I had gotten to know at one of the
meetings that had been sponsored by Sea Grant, I told him my tale of woe and Sea Grant came
through with ten-times more funding, launching my career. That two hundred fify thousand
two-year grant essentially launched my career. So I would like to use this as an example
of a part of Sea Grant that hasn’t been emphasized as much, and should be, and that’s the fundamental
science that’s done, the contributions to our understanding life cycles of marine animals,
understanding the biological oceanography of the coastal areas, the research. It’s really
very very important. And at the University of Maryland was Mike Pelzar, who – if anybody
here is a microbiologist besides myself – Pelzar and Reed was a textbook Mike Pelzar publish
that went into about fifteen editions. Every microbiologist in the United States would
take introductory microbiology from Mike. Mike learned about the research that I was
doing and decided that I should be the next Sea Grant director, or the first Sea Grant
director, in the University of Maryland. So very naively, I agreed to serve as the founding
director of the University of Maryland. It turned out to be a hugely wonderful experience.
One of the opportunities of course and the trials was that the beginning of the decline
of the oyster fishery was a challenge, and the research that we carried out really involved
understanding the pathogens that were affecting the oysters and here is George Grants from
the lab on eastern shore, in Oxford, Maryland, with whom I did a lot of research on the microbiology
and the disease pathogens. But the contributions were really very substantial, and the aquaculture
that we carried out and funded, including to the point where I believe most recently
it’s now been able to, I think, Yoni Zohar and others on the team at University of Maryland
have be able to grow rockfish larvae all the way to full-grown animals. Aquaculture has
turned out to be really one of the mainstays for feeding the population, the ten billion
that we expect to be on the planet Earth in the next twenty or thirty years. Now we introduced
another very important aspect of basic research. Find out the fundamental genomics. Of course
we all know now about sequencing, but this was way back thirty years ago when we were
just beginning to understand gene transfer. And Sea Grant has contributed to the genomics
of marine animals and marine plants. So again, that’s another really important contribution
of the Sea Grant organization in understanding the whole life cycle, and the genomics and
the improvement of stocks through genomics. We’ve also done a lot of tech transfer. This
is Ron Weiner, who discovered that the oyster larvae, in attaching to surfaces, produced
a biofilm and the biofilm turned out to be really very important. Patents were filed,
and a company was actually formed. That was finally bought out by a larger organization
in California, but it was nurtured and started here in Maryland. So again, tech transfer
of the basic science to actual economically valuable contribution done by Sea Grant. And
then, education is a really important aspect of the Sea Grant colleges around the country.
In a personal story about communication and education, in the audience is Mike FIncham.
When I was teaching marine microbiology, –Mike, where are you? Stand up. Good. When I was
teaching microbiology at the University of Maryland, and it was a very popular class.
The room I think sat about eighty but a hundred twenty or a hundred thirty would sign up.
Only about ten could go to sea on the research cruises. So I contacted Mike and we decided
to do a film, Invisible Seas, to describe what it was like to go to sea to do research.
Unbeknownst to me, that film was submitted to the Venice Film Festival. And in the lab
one day, I got a phone call from the Venice Film Festival, saying we would like you to
come to the Venice Film Festival showing, and my reaction was, I put the phone down
and I said, OK, which one of you wise guys is carrying out this practical joke? Well,
it wasn’t a practical joke, it was real. So MIke Fincham, Mac Nelson, the team in Maryland,
the kind of communication is really superb. So that’s another aspect of Sea Grant that
I remember and appreciate so very much. So the future. I expect that there will be more
discoveries, more basic research, and a whole lot of fun to be had by Sea Grant students
and those of you who are Knauss fellows, I’m sure you’re having the time of your life as
well, learning how things go on the HIll, or don’t go on the Hill, in any case, working
on the HIll. So with that, I’d like to wish Sea Grant a very happy fiftieth birthday and
to thank you all for being part of the Sea Grant college family. We have a lot still
to do, and it’s fun to be here. Thank you all very much.
(applause) Thank you, Rita. Over lunch, I was speaking
with Gordon Grau, and he told me a number of great stories about our next speaker, Senator
Schatz. He is a true– he was a Sea Grant Extension agent in Hawaii, if you can imagine
that, and what a guy to have here to speak to us.
OK, our next speaker is the senator from Hawaii, Senator Brian Schatz. Senator Schatz.
(applause) Good evening. Aloha.
That’s pretty good. We brought our weather this week, for all of you. It is such a pleasure
to be here, as a former NOAA employee, as a former University of Hawaii Sea Grant employee.
I have one thing to say. I worked so hard on this. Every time I do a Sea Grant thing,
everybody assumes I was an extension agent, but the truth is, I was a program assistant.
I was not an Extension agent, and I want to tell you my sort of history with the program.
There was a person named Bruce Miller who ran the University of Hawai’i Sea Grant Extension
Service. He was a friend, he had gotten me involved in political action, not through
Sea Grant but not through Sea Grant, when I was sixteen or seventeen years old and we
were still in the process at the state legislature of clarifying which CFCs individually at the
state statute level were banned, and it was my first experience tesifying at the legislature
and all of that, and then I got involved in something called the Save Sandy Beach Coalition.
I was fortunate enough two days ago on Sunday for my son’s 12th birthday to go hiking at
what is now the Kaiwi coastline park, which was a thirty year effort to prevent golf courses
one and two and to preserve the last remaining stretch of undisturbed coastline on the island
of Oahu. So I was nineteen years old and was in college and as my philosophy professor
told me, I lacked a certain rigor, and I sat down at a place that no longer exists because
Starbucks overtook it, but it was a place called Coffee Manoa in Manoa Valley, and I
said, You know, I need a job when I graduate from college, and Bruce MIller said, Brian,
your opportunity is only limited by your vision. And that really changed everything for me.
And working with the University of Hawaii Sea Grant I got my first summer job, my first
meaningful summer job I should say, at the Maricultural Research Training Center out
in Kahalu, about two hours by bus, forty minutes by car, but it was two hours by bus for me.
On the other side of the island, and I thought, well I’m learning about aquaculture, I’m learning
about sustainability, I’m really… and all I did was chop hau bush. Hau bush grows probably
six inches a day. And I still remember, you know, the sort of vigor that you have when
someone says, “Brian, do you want an office job or do you want a field job?” and I said
“I want to be in the field.” And then he came back, like three weeks later, and he says,
“Do you still want to be in the field?” I said, “Well, if you have anything on campus,
I’d be open to it.” And my history, you know, with Sea Grant really
continued from there, I ended up being the volunteer coordinator at the twenty-fifth
anniversary of Earth Day at Kapeolani Park, on the island of Oahu. And then with Sea Grant
Extension Service, we started a program called Youth for Environmental Service. THe basic
idea was, from my own experience, I understood that young people really cared about the environment
and wanted to do something but there were lots of — but they didn’t know what to do.
And really didn’t know what to do. And there were conservation agents in Hawai’i, not-for-profits
and government agencies that really actually needed person power. And no joke, needed person
power because a lot of what happens in terms of invasive species in Hawai’i is it’s not
about planting trees, it’s about keeping those trees alive that are already in the ecosystem.
So literally getting say a hundred fourth graders out there and saying “See this vine,
called Maile pilau, pull it down.” is both really good environmental education, and useful
to for instance, the Lyon Arboretum or the Ho’omaluhia Botanical Garden. And Sea Grant
gave me that chance. They were the mother ship that allowed me to raise money from both
charitable foundations on Oahu and across the United States to start something really
meaningful where we got tens of thousands of kids exposed to community service for the
environment. Um, and then I decided that I was going to run for the State legislature
at the age of twenty five. I will fast forward all the way to the last couple of years in
my service to the state of Hawaii in the United States Senate and say that for me, it’s coming
full circle. It’s the understanding that a lot of the issues that we care about are manifested
through the work that all of you do at Sea Grant across the country. And for me, someone
who cares about climate, as someone who cares about conservation, I understand that in this
political environment that what you do has to be accountable, it has to be relatively
inexpensive, and most importantly it has to work. And what Sea Grant does really works.
It works in coastal zone management, it works in providing resources for conservation officials,
for fisheries, for helping communities to plan better, and it works in terms of finding
common ground between Democrats and Republicans when common ground is so, so difficult to
come by. And for me, one of the most exciting moments in my relatively short career in the
United States Senate was partnering with the University of Hawai’i and Sea Grant in particular
for a conference that we put together called “Aspire” at UH and the final speaker was the
former Vice President, Al Gore. And I have to tell you a couple things about that experience.
First of all, we had to move it to the basketball arena. And we had, we’re not really sure,
between seven and ten thousand people there for Al Gore’s Power Point. And Al, he insisted
I call him Al, it took me a while, normally does about forty minutes on his Power Point.
He went ninety minutes, and you could have heard a pin drop. To me the most gratifying
aspect of this, the vast majority of those thousands and thousands of people in that
room, in that basketball arena, listening to what’s happening with the climate, were
young people. They were public school kids from across the state of Hawai’i. And that
was something that Sea Grant helped our office to put together, and so I think it goes without
saying that you can count on my support in the appropriations process for what all of
you do, and I know that that matters more than moral support. I get it. I understand.
I understand it’s dollars. BUt I also just wanted to say how thankful I am for what you
do. I mean I make this, it’s not a joke, it’s actually a clarification that people laugh
at, about me not being an extension agent. I know how big of a deal it is to be an extension
agent and the reason I clarify that is that I really wasn’t qualified to be an extension
agent. The skill set that all of you have, the technical knowledge that all of you have,
is extraordinary, so what everybody in this room does is worth funding. It’s worth cheering,
it’s worth thanking you all. So thank you very much for everything you do, and I’ll
do everything I can for you. Aloha. (applause)
Thank you, Senator Schatz. Ah, is there anything else before we wrap up here? No? OK Well thank
you for joining us for the kickoff of the fifty year anniversary of the Sea Grant program.
As probably many of you know, it’s going to be a year-long celebration so this is just
the beginning of it. Sea Grant looks with anticipation to the next fifty years. We will
address new and emerging challenges with a research, outreach and education model that
we have honed and perfected during the program’s first fifty years. As you look around this
room and see a number of people from Sea Grant throughout the nation, I think you can see
that Sea Grant is in pretty good hands for the next fifty years. So thank you all for
coming. The Knauss reception starts at six thirty; it’s in the Dirkson Center Building
next door. Thank you. (applause)

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