Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Foundation’s held its third entertaining installment of the Sanctuary Sup Series on Wednesday, November 18th from noon-1:00pm. This free speaker series was an opportunity to virtually “sup” (share a meal) together while also learning from notable sanctuary luminaries.
To kick things off, outgoing Superintendent Paul Michel was ambushed with several awards thanking him for his commitment to the Sanctuary over the last 13 years. Among those who thanked Paul were Sanctuary Advisory Council members Brian Nelson and Tom Rowley, as well as former Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta. In order to surprise Paul with the physical awards and still abide by COVID distancing guidelines, Paul was instructed virtually to find the awards hidden in baskets in his office. After the lively award ceremony came to a close, Paul gave a presentation reflecting on his experiences as the Sanctuary’s Superintendent over the last 13 years. Paul then introduced our second speaker, marine scientist Chad King, who delighted attendees with the deep sea discoveries in the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary—most notably an octopus garden with thousands of brooding octopus and a fresh whale fall. Chad’s presentation was followed by a brief Q&A section where he clarified that the prevailing plural of the word “octopus” is actually “octopus” or “octopuses,” but NOT “octopi” as we were all instructed as children! Who knew?
To close out our event, Foundation Director Ginaia Kelly announced our next opportunity to connect—the virtual second annual Sea Stars Brunch on Dec. 6th, 2020!
Parting Words from Outgoing Superintendent;
Deep-Sea Discoveries in the Sanctuary—an Octopus Garden!
Paul Michel is now the Regional Policy Coordinator for NOAA’s West Coast Region of National Marine Sanctuaries, which covers Alaska to California and the five sanctuaries at Olympic Coast, Cordell Bank, Farallones, Monterey Bay, and Channel Islands, as well as the proposed Chumash Heritage Sanctuary off Morro Bay. Paul is the former Superintendent of Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary where he served thirteen years up until September of 2019. Paul has more than 32 years experience in federal government and has worked in local, state, federal, tribal, and international areas.
Chad King has been on the Monterey Bay NMS Research Team since 2002, specializing in kelp forest ecology, GIS, and deep-sea research. He has recently led three deep-sea expeditions to Davidson Seamount aboard Ocean Exploration Trust’s Exploration Vessel Nautilus where they used remotely operated vehicles to explore seafloor more than 2 miles deep.