Ocean leaders made waves at the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre, as British Columbia’s best and brightest gathered at the 22nd Annual Coastal Ocean Awards. The award ceremony was a splashy event featuring canapés and a three-course dinner by Ned Bell, Ocean Wise ambassador and Executive Chef of the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre. Guests were treated to music, comedy and art as they learned more about the lives and accomplishments of the award winners.
The Murray A. Newman Award for Significant Achievement in Aquatic Research was awarded to Dr. Chris Harley of UBC for his exceptional research on coastal marine ecology and the impacts of climate change.
The Murray A. Newman Award for Significant Achievement in Aquatic Conservation was awarded to Mr. Graeme Ellis for his exceptional lifetime contributions to killer whale research and conservation.
The Coastal Ocean Communication Award was awarded to guud san glans (Mr. Robert Davidson), one of Canada’s most respected and important contemporary visual artists.
The award for Innovative Use of Technology was given to Mr. Glen Dennison for his invaluable and inventive design and application of technologies that have contributed to understanding, conserving, and communicating the irreplaceable glass sponge reefs in Howe Sound and the diverse species that inhabit them.
The award for Conservation Volunteer was awarded to Mr. Peter Mieras, who designed and implemented the “Derelict Gear Removal” program in the Barkley Sound. The program entails removing nets from the ocean floor to prevent sea creatures from becoming entangled in lost and discarded nets.
Dr. Lucas Brotz received the Michael A. Bigg Award for student research, for his exceptional contributions to the understanding of jellyfish in waters around the world.
The North Medal for Contribution to Research and Conservation was awarded to Mr. Tony Allard, a remarkable promoter for a sustainable future for BC’s coastal ecosystems and for active engagement of local indigenous communities in pursuing this goal.