It has certainly been a busy week here at Ocean Leadership. On Wednesday, we held our annual Public Policy Forum in the Reserve Officers Association Building. The event, which focused on “The Urban Ocean,” was extremely well attended, the presentations were excellent, and the panel discussions could have gone on all day. I would like to thank all of our speakers for taking the time to participate in the Forum. The ocean scientists, federal agency members, Hill staff, port administrators, and city planners did a first rate job on our three panels: Port Cities Preparing for Changing Oceans; Engineering Implications of Wind, Water, and Waves; and “Harboring” Pollution. I would especially like to thank Senators Jack Reed (D-RI), Bill Nelson (D-FL), and Ed Markey (D-MA) as well as Representative Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), for taking the time out of their very busy schedules to address the Forum participants. Following the Forum, we hosted a reception in the Dirksen House Building where lively discussions continued into the late evening. A summary of the event, along with the presentations, videos and photos about the Forum, will be available on our website soon.
On Thursday, Ocean Leadership hosted its Spring Members and Board of Trustees meetings. Overall, the meetings were extremely productive, discussions on new opportunities to provide service to our Members were lively, and several new Trustees were elected.
We are pleased to welcome Chris D’Elia of Louisiana State University, Megan Davis of Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute at Florida Atlantic University and Roberta Marinelli of the University of Southern California to the Board. In addition, Mike Perfit of the University of Florida was re-elected to a second term on the Board. Rotating off the Board this year are four individuals who have been important contributors and supporters of the organization and the broader science community. Susan Avery from WHOI, Bob Corell from the Global Environment and Technology Foundation, Nancy Rabalais from the Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium and Jim Sanders from Skidaway Institute of Oceanography of the University of Georgia have all served on the Ocean Leadership Board for six years. I want to express my heartfelt thanks to each of them for their many contributions and for their diligence and care in serving the organization as it has progressed to the stature it has today.
I would also like to thank Dr. S. Bradley Moran, Assistant Director for Ocean Sciences at the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and the Acting Director of the National Ocean Council, for speaking at the meeting about OSTP priorities over the next several years and how the current fiscal climate is impacting its strategy. His thoughts on the “Blue Economy” stimulated discussion that went on well after his excellent presentation.
I hope you have a restful weekend. I certainly intend on having one!