Tuesday, June 5, 2012

POLA Director Receives Ocean Conservation Award

Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Geraldine Knatz has been named the 2012 recipient of the Blue Frontier Campaign’s Peter Benchley Ocean Award for “excellence in solutions” for her environmental efforts as executive director of the Port of Los Angeles and her role as president of the International Association of Ports and Harbors.

She received the award during a June 1 ceremony in San Francisco.

The Blue Frontier Campaign is a national marine conservation activist organization working to improve ocean policies in coastal states. The Peter Benchley Award is named after marine wildlife conservationist Peter Benchley, who’s best known for writing the bestselling novel “Jaws,” which was first published in 1974.

Additionally during the ceremony, a posthumous award was given to Peter Douglas, the creator and longtime executive director of the California Coastal Commission. Douglas, who died in April, will be honored with the “Hero of the Seas” award for assuring public access to and protection of California’s 1,100 miles of coastline.

Others receiving awards during Blue Frontier’s 2012 ceremonies include U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) for advocating for ocean protection in the United States Senate; Internet company Google for making ocean exploration possible via its Google Earth virtual globe program; and Nancy Rabalais, executive director of the Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium, who was honored for working to reduce the upstream causes of the Gulf of Mexico “dead zone,” a large region that has oxygen concentrations too low to support aquatic life.