As mentioned before, the SECORE Foundation wouldn’t be able to organize the SECORE program without the help of our valued funders and partners. Today, we would like to introduce you to Clyde Woodburn! Clyde is a Board Member of the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium. Through the Clyde and Connie Woodburn Foundation, he has been a funder of SECORE since 2006.
Clyde is not just giving money, he is actively involved and joined every field workshop since the very first one in Puerto Rico (2006). So, why? ‘It’s a very interesting program, growing coral babies and put them back into the reef. I think that’s the way to do it. You see invention at work. In Puerto Rico, they had nothing to work with and they have come from a long way developing to what it is now.’
How did the SECORE program develop from your point of view?
‘Well, first of all, the research has developed and it still does. As I said, in Puerto Rico they started with nothing. Wooden sheds, a blow-up swimming pool to culture larvae, and they had to go way out to get some good water for in the system. I’ve seen the research equipment improve, such as the kreisels. Then they moved to Curacao, where the water quality was much better and where they developed a good relationship with Dutch (Adriaan ‘Dutch’ Schrier, director and owner of the Curacao Sea Aquarium). Dutch gave the opportunity to build the land-based facilities and put a roof over the coral babies’ heads.’
‘Since the research developed, the teaching also developed. Every year I see new faces, new people joining the workshops and getting interested, which is very good. The documentation is improving as well. In the beginning, there was no professional photographer and media person with the workshops. Now there is!’
‘Communication is organized better, SECORE uses all new technologies to spread the word. Of course, there is the website, but also the weblog and the use of social media. The coffee table book created by Paul Selvaggio and Bob Snowden, professional leaflets that have been printed, t-shirts and so on. And again there were several articles published in the local newspapers, and a bunch of people came to the public lecture evening, which I think is great!’
How do you see the future of the SECORE Foundation?
‘I think SECORE is developing at a slow pace, which I think is good, so they’re able to oversee the consequences of what they’re doing. They have learned from the start till now and they have a package to take to other places. They’re ready to go.
Now the only thing the foundation needs is more money. So I hope Susan Green of the Green Foundation and NOAA will continue to fund SECORE and new funders will get involved. We will definitely release some money to the foundation in September. And of course I will join the next workshop!’