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From the Desk of the Director – February 2024

Dear Sea Grant Colleagues, 

I hope that the new year has granted you high spirits, optimism, and motivation.  Last month, I was able to participate in Florida Sea Grant’s research symposium and the annual meeting of their extension personnel from around the state. I also participated in a number of events with our Knauss Fellows, including graduation for the 2023 class, and legislative placement and orientation for the entire 2024 Knauss class. These events are potent reminders of the impactful work that Sea Grant does to support our coastal and Great Lakes communities across the nation and it fills me with gratitude for all your hard work and the positive, lasting impact that each of you continue to have on the communities we serve. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

I am looking forward to being with the SGA directors, network leaders, and our Advisory Board at the SGA and Sea Grant Advisory Board meetings in DC in just three weeks. As a reminder:

  • Save the Date and Register! We will have our first Webinar for the Network on February 27, 2024 at 3:30 PM Eastern Time. This webinar will include information regarding the Sea Grant Association and National Sea Grant Advisory Board Meeting and other updates from the National Office. Register here!

Beyond that, the gears are turning at full speed here at the National Sea Grant Office, and I’d like to share with you some exciting news: 

  • Now Live: The latest Sea Grant by the Numbers” is available!  As a highlight, in 2022, federal investment in the Sea Grant of $89.5 million resulted in an economic benefit of $802.3 M. Thanks to all programs for providing your measures and metrics and working with our staff to answer any follow-up questions.  We encourage you to share the Sea Grant by the Numbers with your university, state leaders, and constituents.  

As you may have heard, we are currently operating as usual under the current continuing resolution, which ends on March 8th. As we continue deeper into the year without a final FY2024 budget, we will act to release what we believe will be our final internal funding opportunities for the year (it is possible that further announcements on potential externally-supported partnership and pass-through opportunities could be added). 

  • Spring Workshops and Professional Meetings competition will be announced to programs shortly and aimed to close in early April.

  • We are also putting the final touches on NOFOs for the Young Fisherman’s Development Act, American Lobster, and Contaminants of Emerging Concern based on the best information that we have been able to gather. While we are not able to provide details on the focus of these competitions per grants management protocols, we will provide information and announce these NOFOs as soon as we are able.

We also ask that you be aware and respond to any of the following grant-related actions that apply to you and your program.

  • Programs may now proceed with public announcements of Omnibus awards and associated projects.  As always, if you are announcing projects before your award is received at your university, you must include messaging that states the work is recommended for funding and pending final approval by NOAA. Thanks for your patience!

  • The annual deadline to submit pass-through applications that have been previously confirmed with NSGO is May 1st, and we ask that everyone reach out to your program officer as soon as you can this winter/spring to discuss any remaining proposed pass-throughs.

  • Reminder to Directors that the survey for external reviewer suggestions for site reviews (other than your own) is due February 16th. 

  • Call for Reviewers! And finally, Sea Grant is looking for reviewers for the National Sea Grant BIL/IRA Competitions.  We are looking for folks with expertise in climate resilience across a range of sectors, including workforce development, marine debris, community coalition building, and DEIJA. More details can be found on our website. 

I am looking forward to connecting with many of you during the Webinar and the Spring Meeting and wish you all the best as we navigate through the latter stages of winter and move forward toward Spring.

Warm wishes, 


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