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February 21, 2007

CONTACT: Jennifer Morgan/FGBNMS
(409) 621-5151 ext. 103

NOAA’s Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary Seeks Applicants for Advisory Council Commercial Fishing Seat

Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary, managed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), is seeking to fill one seat representing commercial fishing interests on its advisory council, a volunteer group that ensures public participation in sanctuary management and provides advice to the sanctuary superintendent.

Advisory council applicants are selected based on their expertise and experience in relation to the seat for which they are applying, community and professional affiliations, and philosophy regarding the protection and management of marine resources. The applicant who is chosen for the commercial fishing position should expect to serve a two-year term, pursuant to the council’s charter. Current seat holders may reapply.

The Flower Garden Banks Sanctuary Advisory Council consists of 11 members who represent a variety of local user groups, the public, and government interests. The council's role is to provide sanctuary managers with advice on resource protection, research, education and outreach programs. The advisory council meets every two months.

“Sanctuary advisory councils have proven to be an invaluable source of advice and input by members of the community regarding the management of our national marine sanctuaries, America’s ocean treasures,” said George P. Schmahl, superintendent of Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary. “We are excited about the role that our advisory council has played in the management of the sanctuary, especially during our current management plan review, and we look forward to working with new members.”

Applications are due by March 15, 2007, and must be submitted to Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary, 4700 Avenue U, Bldg. 216, Galveston, TX 77551. To receive an application kit or for further information, please contact Jennifer Morgan at (409) 621-5151 ext. 103, or by email at

Located in the northwestern Gulf of Mexico, Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary includes three separate areas, known as East Flower Garden, West Flower Garden, and Stetson banks. The sanctuary was designated on January 17, 1992, and Stetson Bank was added to the sanctuary in 1996. The Flower Garden and Stetson banks harbor the northernmost coral reefs in the continental United States and serve as regional reservoirs of shallow-water reef fishes and invertebrates.

NOAA’s National Marine Sanctuary Program seeks to increase the public awareness of America’s marine resources and maritime heritage by conducting scientific research, monitoring, exploration and educational programs. Today, the sanctuary program manages 13 national marine sanctuaries and one marine national monument that together encompass more than 150,000 square miles of America’s ocean and Great Lakes natural and cultural resources.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, an agency of the U.S. Commerce Department, is celebrating 200 years of science and service to the nation. From the establishment of the Survey of the Coast in 1807 by Thomas Jefferson to the formation of the Weather Bureau and the Commission of Fish and Fisheries in the 1870s, much of America's scientific heritage is rooted in NOAA.

NOAA is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and information service delivery for transportation, and by providing environmental stewardship of our nation's coastal and marine resources. Through the emerging Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS), NOAA is working with its federal partners, more than 60 countries and the European Commission to develop a global monitoring network that is as integrated as the planet it observes, predicts and protects.


On the Web:


NOAA’s National Ocean Service:

NOAA’s National Marine Sanctuary Program:

Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary:




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