Rhode Island Sea Grant Celebrates 30 Years in the Ocean State

The Rhode Island Sea Grant College Program is celebrating the 30th anniversary of the University of Rhode Island’s designation as a Sea Grant College in a reception at URI President Robert Carothers’ home on Tuesday, November 27 from 4:30 to 6:00 p.m. URI was instrumental in creating the National Sea Grant College Program, and in 1971 URI was one of the first four universities officially designated as a Sea Grant College.

“I believe Sea Grant has done much to make Rhode Islanders aware of the importance of Narragansett Bay and the surrounding ocean to its economy and its general well-being. We call ourselves the ‘Ocean State.’ Sea Grant can take some credit for that ocean awareness. It was not that way 30 years ago,” says John Knauss, the Rhode Island Sea Grant College Program’s first director and former dean of the URI Graduate School of Oceanography.

Former Senator Claiborne Pell will be honored at the reception for his instrumental efforts in founding the national program. Other honorees are Knauss, former Sea Grant Director Scott Nixon, former Sea Grant Director Neils Rorholm, former GSO Office of Marine Programs Director Walter Gray, URI Oceanography Professor Emeritus Nelson Marshall, URI Oceanography Professor Emeritus Saul Saila, and R.I. Department of Environmental Management Division of Natural Resources Assistant Director David Borden.

As Sea Grant celebrates its history, Barry Costa-Pierce, Rhode Island Sea Grant College Program director, looks ahead. “The current demand for Sea Grant programming is extraordinary. Rhode Island’s multi-million dollar marine economy is burgeoning. Sea Grant will continue to provide the best possible science to assist decisions that impact fisheries, coastal communities, and the marine environment,” Costa-Pierce says.

To receive a copy of Rhode Island Sea Grant College Program: Celebrating 30 Years in the Ocean State & 2001–2003 Program Guide, please contact Rhode Island Sea Grant at (401) 874-6842.

For more information, Monica Allard, allard@gso.uri.edu 401-874-6842.