Finalists Announced for Florida’s Premier Ocean Conservation Awards Event

Loggerhead Marinelife Center’s Tenth Annual Go Blue Awards recognize ocean heroes

Nearly 100 distinguished guests gathered at Hilton West Palm Beach on Sept. 17 for the exciting announcement of Loggerhead Marinelife Center’s (LMC) Tenth Annual Go Blue Awards finalists. Guests rubbed shoulders with respected ocean conservationists and enjoyed cocktails and hors d’oeuvres prior to the announcement of the finalists and honorees.  LMC’s Go Blue Awards Luncheon is Florida’s premier ocean conservation awards event and is judged by an independent panel of globally-renowned conservation experts.

With the exception of the Eleanor Fletcher Lifetime Achievement Award, winners in each category will be revealed at the Tenth Annual Go Blue Awards Luncheon on Friday, Oct. 26 starting at 11 a.m. at the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach.

This year’s event will feature Emmy Award-winning television show host, Conservationist and Biologist, Jeff Corwin as special guest and keynote speaker. Mr. Corwin is the host of “Ocean Treks,” Renowned Conservationist and Environmental Journalist. Jeff Corwin shares his one-of-a kind perspective on wildlife conservation, empowering audiences to join the movement to save our natural world for future generations.

As the host of the Emmy Award-winning ABC wildlife adventure series “Ocean Treks with Jeff Corwin,” Jeff educates and entertains audiences with his knowledge and deep care for the natural world.

The Eleanor Fletcher Lifetime Achievement Award, named for the founder of Loggerhead Marinelife Center, recognizes an individual who has exemplified a lifelong, extraordinary commitment to marine conservation through their work or volunteer activities.

  • Dr. Charles Manire, Loggerhead Marinelife Center Director of Research & Rehabilitation–2018 award recipient
  • Kelli McGee, President Natua Strategies
  • Todd M. Steiner, Turtle Island Restoration Network


The 2018 Go Blue Awards finalists are as follows:

The Blue Ambassador of the Year Award recognizes a person who has made significant contributions in marine conservation through volunteer related activities:

  • Anja Burns, Loggerhead Marinelife Center Volunteer for 26 years
  • Ralph “RIP” McEldowney, Jupiter Inlet
  • Betsy Smith, Loggerhead Marinelife Center Volunteer for 15 years-Conservation

The Blue Friend of the Year Award recognizes a person who has made significant contributions in marine conservation through work-related activities:

  • Jacquelyn Kingston, Sea Turtle Adventures
  • Jeff Pantukhoff, Whaleman Foundation
  • Jennifer Reilly, Loggerhead Marinelife Center Field Operations Assistant
  • Richard Walesky, Director, Palm Beach County Environmental  Resources Management, Retired

The Blue Hatchling Youth Award recognizes students up to and including twelfth grade who have made significant contributions in marine conservation through volunteer related activities:

  • Faith Blackall, Ocean’s Daughter Conservation Alliance
  • Milo Cress, Be Straw Free Campaign
  • Gray Foster, Single Use Plastic and Balloon Ban Advocate
  • Ryan Moralevitz, The Fishes Wishes
  • Madison Toonder, Conservation Researcher and Advocate

The Blue Business of the Year Award recognizes a business or non-profit that has made outstanding contributions toward promoting and encouraging conservation, restoration, or preservation of marine life and/or marine ecosystems through their business practices, products or technology:

  • 4Ocean, LLC
  • Andrew “Red” Harris Foundation
  • Eau Palm Beach Resort
  • National Marine Life Center-Buzzard’s Bay


Read more about each finalist HERE.

This year’s distinguished independent panel of judges includes: Gary and Brenda Adkison, U.S. Shark Foundation directors; Fabien Cousteau, aquanaut, oceanographic explorer, conservationist and documentary filmmaker; Greg Marshall, inventor and scientist, National Geographic Society; Cristina Mittermeier, award-winning photographer and marine biologist; Sally Murray, daughter of LMC Founder Eleanor Fletcher; Susan Murray, Oceana U.S. Pacific deputy vice president, granddaughter of LMC Founder Eleanor Fletcher; Paul Nicklen; photographer and marine biologist, National Geographic; Joel Sartore, photographer, speaker, author, teacher and 20-year National Geographic Magazine contributor; Brian Skerry, National Geographic award-winning photojournalist; and Jim Toomey, Mission Blue executive director, Sherman’s Lagoon Comic Strip creator. WPTV News Channel 5 Meteorologist Glenn Glazer will once again serve as the introductory host for this year’s luncheon.

Special thanks to Go Blue Awards Luncheon Co-Chairs Pete and Lynne Wells, as well as sponsors: Presenting Sponsor Manatee Lagoon – an FPL Eco-Discovery Center; United Technologies Corp.; Pete and Lynne Wells; Douglas Elliman Real Estate; Monique Brechter & Steven Heinemann; North American Veterinary Heart Center; Pratt & Whitney; AW Property Co.; Krumholtz Family Foundation; Barbara Savastano; PNC; Seven Kings Holdings, Inc.; Tire Kingdom; Bart & Julie Livolsi; Ann Miller; Leanna Landsmann & Chip Block; UBS Berman Lowenthal Group; Beau Standish; Sustainable Palm Beach County; Gunster; Betsy Munson-Douglas Elliman; Holtec; Deluge Biotechnologies; WLS Vitamins/Dr. & Mrs. Jefferson Vaughan; EDS Air Conditioning; James P. Stanton, CFP-UBS; Nason Yeager Gerson White & Lioce, P.A.; Tommy Bahama; 3550 South Ocean; Jensen-Johnson, LLC; Sandy James Fine Food & Productions; The Capital Grille; Tiffany & Co.; Florida Weekly; Jupiter Magazine and Gretchen Scott.

The Go Blue Awards was created to recognize individuals and businesses that directly or indirectly support Loggerhead Marinelife Center’s mission to promote conservation of ocean ecosystems with a special focus on threatened and endangered sea turtles.

To purchase tickets to the Tenth Annual Go Blue Awards Luncheon, or to learn more about sponsoring the luncheon, visit


Loggerhead Marinelife Center:

Loggerhead Marinelife Center is a nonprofit sea turtle research, rehabilitation and educational institution that promotes conservation of ocean ecosystems with a focus on threatened and endangered sea turtles. The Center features an on-site campus hospital, research laboratory, educational exhibits and aquariums, and also operates the Juno Beach Pier, which hosts world-class angling and sightseeing. Situated on one of the world’s most important sea turtle nesting beaches, Loggerhead Marinelife Center is open daily and hosts over 350,000 guests free-of-charge each year. The Center’s conservation team works with 76 local and international organizations across six continents to form partnerships and share conservation initiatives and best practices that are core to its mission of ocean conservation. The Center is expanding and has launched its Waves of Progress capital expansion campaign, designed to accelerate and amplify LMC’s conservation and education impact. When complete, the facility will offer one of the world’s most advanced and unique experiences for guests and scientific partners. For more information, visit or call (561) 627-8280.