NOAA 2002-R422
Contact: Stephanie Balian
NOAA News Releases 2002
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Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary, managed by the Commerce Department's National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, is seeking applicants for eight Sanctuary Advisory Council seats. The seats available include the conservation, sport diving, sport fishing, education and research positions.

The Gray's Reef Sanctuary Advisory Council was established in August 1999 to provide advice and recommendations on management and protection of the sanctuary. The council, through its members, also represents community interests and concerns to sanctuary management and NOAA.

Gray's Reef, designated a National Marine Sanctuary in 1981, contains one of the largest nearshore, live-bottom reefs off the Southeastern United States, encompassing approximately 17 square nautical miles. The sanctuary supports an abundant reef fish and invertebrate community. Loggerhead sea turtles, a threatened species, use Gray's Reef year-round for foraging and resting. The reef rests within the known winter calving ground for the highly endangered northern right whale.

A council member application package may be obtained by calling Council Coordinator Becky Shortland at (912) 598-2345 or by e-mailing her at Completed applications should be mailed to: Reed Bohne, Sanctuary Manager, Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary, 10 Ocean Science Circle, Savannah, GA 31411. New, or reappointed representatives for each seat selected by the sanctuary will begin their terms in the fall. Interested persons must submit a letter of application to the Sanctuary by July 31.

NOAA's National Ocean Service manages the National Marine Sanctuary Program, and is dedicated to exploring, understanding, conserving, and restoring the nation's coasts and oceans. NOAA Ocean Service balances environmental protection with economic prosperity in fulfilling its mission of promoting safe navigation, supporting coastal communities, sustaining coastal habitats and mitigating coastal hazards.

To learn more about NOAA Ocean Service and the National Marine Sanctuary Program, please visit:

More information on the sanctuary is available at