When Loggerhead Marinelife Center's expansion is completed, it will include a clean water filtration system to regulate the sea turtle patient tanks.
When Loggerhead Marinelife Center’s expansion is completed, it will include a clean water filtration system to regulate the sea turtle patient tanks.

Loggerhead Marinelife Center Secures Lifesaving Two Million Dollar Matching Gift

Loggerhead Marinelife Center is proud to announce a two-million dollar-for-dollar matching gift towards its Waves of Progress campus expansion. The lifesaving matching gift will help the Center raise critical funds to deploy the world’s most advanced clean water filtration system at a sea turtle hospital. The industry-leading filtration system will provide quarantining, filtration, heating, and chilling for each individual hospital tank and patient regardless of water quality or environmental conditions. 

Since opening its facility in 2007, the Center’s Sea Turtle Hospital has treated and released thousands of threatened and endangered sea turtle patients back into the ocean. However, the current hospital water system does not provide inbound water filtration for its patients. Over the past decade, Florida’s coastal waters have suffered from dangerous levels of:

  • blue-green algae
  • high bacteria counts from watershed, and
  • the recurrence of deadly red tide

The Center’s current water system cannot properly screen these toxins out of the hospital water, harming patients’ chances for recovery. With its world-class mission surrounding sea turtle and ocean conservation, the Center has worked with global water quality experts to blueprint, design, and install the world’s most advanced seawater filtration system.

What will the gift provide?

The expanded campus will allow the Center to double its sea turtle capacity and provide clean water despite environmental circumstances.

In addition to providing state-of-the-art patient protection, the system will allow guests, students, and collaborators an exciting immersive opportunity to see clean water filtration and hydrology in action. The Center’s new clean water quality bunker will offer an exhibit-quality learning experience for students interested in water quality, technology, and engineering. Center educators will use the clean water quality system as a show site to its 90 plus global collaborators should other organizations want to replicate the system.

“Sea turtles are the oceans canary in the coal mine. The health of our oceans and beaches go hand-in-hand with the health of our sea turtles,” said Jack E. Lighton, LMC President and CEO. “Our Center’s mantra is, “The sea turtle tells us the health of the ocean and the ocean tells us the health of our planet.” This extraordinarily generous two-million-dollar matching gift will transform our Center’s lifesaving mission, expand our educational offerings, and help us put the keystone of fundraising in place for our expansion campaign. We are honored to work with the Cornelia T. Bailey Foundation to amplify our impact together and invite the community to join us in this dollar-for-dollar matching gift opportunity.”

The expansion will enable the Center to:

The Center’s new clean water quality filtration system will offer learning experiences for students interested in water quality, technology, and engineering.
The Center’s new clean water quality filtration system will offer learning experiences for students interested in water quality, technology, and engineering.
  • double the sea turtle patient capacity
  • deploy a cutting-edge clean water filtration system
  • add in more than six times the amount of educational programming spaces
  • double the size of its research laboratory
  • debut a new marine life gallery, interactive exhibits, and a new auditorium
  • offer large-scale event and symposium venues for up to 400 guests
  • open a large outdoor ocean-view café

The expansion’s groundbreaking kicked off in April, 2019 and will be complete in early 2021.

For more information on how to get involved, please contact President & CEO Jack E. Lighton at jlighton@marinelife.org or call 561-627-8280 ext. 100.

Media Contact:

Lauren Eissey

Public Relations and Engagement Specialist

561-627-8280, x124

leissey@marinelife.org