NOAA’s Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary appoints advisory council members

February 18, 2015

NOAA’s Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary announced three new members, three modified appointments, and five reappointed members to serve on its sanctuary advisory council at the February 17 council meeting.

The advisory council provides the sanctuary superintendent with input and recommendations on sanctuary programs and management. Members serve three-year terms, pursuant to the council’s charter.

“Members of the sanctuary advisory council help us understand a wide range of concerns and perspectives of the local community,” said Sanctuary Superintendent Sean Morton. “As we welcome our newest members, we also encourage folks throughout the Keys to reach out to them and build relationships with any members that can help represent their interests.”

The newly appointed advisory council primary and alternate members who begin terms this month are:

  • Tad Burke, Fishing – Charter Flats Fishing Guide (Primary)
  • Mimi Stafford, Citizen at Large – Lower Keys (Primary)
  • Caroline McLaughlin, Conservation and Environment (Alternate)

Within the South Florida Ecosystem category, Peter Frezza’s appointment was revised to the primary seat, while Jerry Lorenz became the alternate. David Hawtof shifted from holding the Citizen-at-Large -- Lower Keys primary seat to the alternate seat in that category.

The following members were reappointed to the same seat for another term:

  • Ken Nedimyer, Conservation and Environment (Primary)
  • Jessica Dockery, Conservation and Environment (Alternate)
  • Don Kincaid, Diving – Lower Keys (Primary)
  • Bob Smith, Diving – Lower Keys (Alternate)
  • Ben Daughtry, Fishing – Commercial – Marine/Tropical (Primary)

The Charter Flats Fishing Guide alternate remains vacant, but applications are currently being sought, and interested persons can obtain application kits from the sanctuary’s website, Applications are due March 31, 2015.

A full listing of council members, along with their contact information, is available on sanctuary website at

Authorized in 1990 and established in 1992, the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Council provides advice and recommendations on managing and protecting the sanctuary. The council has 20 representatives and alternates from community constituent groups, and 10 government agencies have non-voting representatives on the council. Serving in a voluntary capacity, the council members represent a variety of local user groups, as well as the general public.

Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary protects 2,900 square nautical miles of critical marine habitat, including coral reef, hard bottom, sea grass meadows, mangrove communities and sand flats, as well as shipwrecks and maritime heritage resources. NOAA and the state of Florida manage the sanctuary. Visit us at, find us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

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