Alaska Sea Grant in the News


Alaska Sea Grant to turn 30, receive $100,000 birthday present

Date: June 23, 2000
Contact: Doug Schneider, Information Officer
Alaska Sea Grant, (907) 474-7449,

FAIRBANKS, Alaska—The Alaska Sea Grant College Program turns 30 this year, a milestone that will be celebrated along with the generous gift of $100,000 from one of the great commercial fishing families of the North Pacific.

The gift is from Frankie Wakefield, wife of the late Lowell Wakefield, a well-known commercial fisherman who is considered the founder of the state's modern crab fishing and processing industry.

The money will be used to endow the Alaska Sea Grant-Lowell Wakefield Fisheries Symposia, a series of international scientific conferences begun in 1982. The series is among the most respected forums for scientists around the world to present results of research on the biology and management of fish and shellfish.

"We are gratified to receive such a gracious donation that will allow us to continue this important symposia series," said Ron Dearborn, Sea Grant Director. "The Wakefield family has been inspirational in their support of fisheries research and in ensuring that the knowledge gained is shared with fishery managers. This donation will allow the series to continue to seek the knowledge needed to manage fisheries for the long-term benefit of all fishing communities."

The endowment will be formally presented during festivities to celebrate Alaska Sea Grant's 30th anniversary. A reception to honor these events will take place beginning at 5 p.m., Wednesday, June 28, at UAF's Georgeson Botanical Garden. Among the guests will be UA President Mark Hamilton, UAF Chancellor Marshall Lind, UAF Provost Paul Reichardt, and School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences Dean Vera Alexander. As an assistant professor of marine science at UAF, Alexander wrote the proposal to the federal government that established the Alaska Sea Grant Program in 1970.

Alaska Sea Grant is one of 30 state-federal-university and industry partnerships in coastal states nationwide. The Alaska program is based at the University of Alaska Fairbanks School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences. Alaska Sea Grant provides financial support to marine and fisheries research throughout Alaska's system of higher education, and responds to the needs of coastal communities through the Alaska Marine Advisory Program. Alaska Sea Grant also is a major supporter of graduate student research, and conducts education and outreach programs on marine issues that affect the state.

Congress established the National Sea Grant Program in 1966 to promote the wise use and conservation of the nation's marine resources.

The Alaska Sea Grant College Program is a marine research, education and outreach service headquartered at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences. Sea Grant is funded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in partnership with the state of Alaska and private industry.

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