Gulf of Mexico Foundation  News from the Gulf online newsletter
photo by Carrie Robertson
Fall 2006
GMF honors NOAA CRP program with celebration
Sept 2006 - The Gulf of Mexico Foundation coordinated a celebratory event at Robinson Island, Alabama, on Sept 18 to highlight the accomplishments of NOQuenton Dokken - photo by Franklin ViolaAA’s Community-based Restoration Program (CRP). Members of Congress, federal officials, and the GMF joined local partners and volunteers in the celebration.
Dr. Quenton Dokken, GMF's executive director, addresses the crowd at the Robinson Island celebration. At right is Colette Boehm with the Orange Beach Convention and Visitors Bureau. Photo by Franklin Viola
This year marks the 10th year of the CRP which has funded more than 1,000 on-the-ground marine habitat restoration projects in 27 states, Canada, and the Caribbean. Organizers chose one of the GMF’s current projects, the Robinson Island Restoration and Protection Project site, as the focus of the celebration. The project restored sand dunes and seagrass beds.  Read more.
GMF coordinates Gulf of Mexico Alliance workshops
Nov 2006 - The GMF's Executive Director, Dr. Quenton Dokken, served as coordinator and facilitator for both the first and second Gulf of Mexico Alliance Regional Restoration Coordination Team Gulf of Mexico AllianceWorkshops. The second meeting was held in New Orleans Nov 1-2, while the first meeting was in June in Biloxi, Mississippi, and included four delegates from Mexico. Notes and minutes from the Biloxi meeting were translated into Spanish. A document produced by the Alliance, called the Governors’ Action Plan for Healthy and Resilient Coasts, is also available in both English and Spanish. The next Gulf of Mexico Alliance workshop is set to be held in March in Mobile, Alabama. Read more.

BP donates $25,000 to Foundation
Nov 2006 - After donating money in 2004 and 2005, BP once again donated $25,000 to the Gulf of Mexico Foundation during a Nov 22 meeting in Houston with GMF staff.

Foundation executive director moves to full time
Dr. Quenton DokkenSept 2006 - After retiring from his post as adjunct professor and researcher at Texas A&M Corpus Christi's Center for Coastal Studies, Dr Quenton Dokken is now working full time as the GMF's executive director. Dokken has been director of the GMF since its inception in 1991. Also moving to the Foundation headquarters in downtown Corpus Christi is Bobbi Reed, who has taken on the role of executive assistant for the GMF.
Dokken, Johnson travel to Mexico, meet with leaders
Sept 2006 - GMF's director Dr. Quenton Dokken and GMF board member Wayne Johnson traveled to Mexico for two weeks in September to meet with one of the country's top non-governmental organizations, Fondo Mexicano para la Conservacion de la Naturaleza. They also met with government officials and representatives from Mexican academic institutions and conservation movements including Pronatura Mexico. In addition to Mexico City, they visited the historic port city of Veracruz and other sites along the Gulf of Mexico, including a large wetlands area where Pronatura had initiated an educational program similar to the GMF's Science & Spanish Club Network.
Tunnell hired for grant administration, office duties
Kathryn Tunnell, new GMF hireNov 2006 - Kathryn Tunnell has replaced Kendal Keyes as the GMF's grant administrator and program coordinator. Keyes has joined the team at Texas Parks & Wildlife Department as a coastal ecologist. She has taken over duties as the Texas GEMS Manager and continues her work on habitat restoration projects. She also reviews permit applications for projects which potentially impact coastal wetlands and is part of the team representing Texas on the Regional Restoration Coordination Team organized by the Gulf of Mexico Foundation. Ms. Tunnell was born and raised in Texas where she earned a bachelor's degree in biology and a masters in marine biology from Texas A&M Corpus Christi. Prior to joining the GMF staff, she worked in natural resource management for both the Texas General Land Office and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.

Committee selects four 2007 GCRP grant recipients
The GMF's steering committee has chosen four restoration projects to fund in 2007 under the Gulf of Mexico Community-based Restoration Program (CRP) grant. Although additional projects may be chosen as well, the four projects to receive funding this year are:
     • Helen Wood Park Wetland Restoration - Alabama
     • Robinson Preserve Borrow Pit Revegetation - Florida
     • North Vermilion Bay Terracing - Louisiana
     • Galveston Bay Education and Restoration - Texas
Recipients of the 2007 Caribbean CRP grant are currently being decided upon. Read more.

Director visits CRP restoration sites in Virgin Islands
After attending the Coral Reef Task Force meeting in St Thomas, US Virgin Islands, Oct 24-27, the GMF Executive Director Dr. Quenton Dokken toured the GMF's restoration projects on the island of St John. The two USVI CRP projects are "Red Hook Salt Pond Restoration" and "Development and Application of an Erosion Control Strategy for the Fish Bay Watershed." Read more.

S&S Club participates in festival by creating game
Oct 2006 - Students from the science & Spanish Club at Van Vleck High School participated in the Coastal Expo tent with the Lower Colorado River Authority and TeGMF's Science & Spanish Clubxas Parks & Wildlife by creating their own "Beaches & Bays of Matagorda Habitat Toss Game" at the annual Rice Festival on Oct 28. The game is a way to educate the public about the vast coastal ecology of the Gulf of Mexico. The Science & Spanish Club program is in its first year at Van Vleck, fourth year at Tidehaven Independent School District and second year at the Palacios and El Campo Boys & Girls Clubs. Over 500 prizes were given away with the habitat toss game. Read more.

Rick Fowler, GMF board member Rick Fowler chosen as board member
Nov 2006 - At a GMF Board of Directors meeting, Rick Fowler was chosen as the GMF's new board member, following the resignation of Hugh Depland. Fowler is vice president and general manager of Gulf of Mexico operations for Dominion Exploration & Production based in New Orleans. Read more.

Scholarships available for restoration conference
Nov 2006 - Scholarships are available for individuals from Texas to attend the 3rd National Conference on Coastal and Estuarine Habitat Restoration,  December 9-13, 2006 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Staff and volunteers of non-profit organizations and students are especially encouraged to apply. To apply, please send a letter to Restore America’s Estuaries at Includes your full name and contact information, reasons for wanting to attend the conference, statement of financial need, how you will use what you learn and approximate annual budget of your organization. Read more.

photo by Carrie Robertson

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© 2006 Gulf of Mexico Foundation. All rights reserved. Newsletter design by Carrie Robertson