NMEA Educator of Year Award
Craig Strang, the Founding Director of MARE, received the National Marine Educator of the Year award at the 2005 National Marine Educators Association (NMEA) Conference in Maui, Hawaii. This prestigious award is given to an individual who makes a significant contribution to marine education at the local, regional, or national level. The award was given to Craig during the 20th year of MARE (16 years at the Lawrence Hall of Science and 4 additional years as Project OCEAN at the Oceanic Society in San Francisco). Craig has been a leader in marine education for over 20 years, and an inspiration to many. The following are excerpts from his nomination letter:
"Craig’s inspiration created Project OCEAN 20 years ago and 14 years ago he guided Project OCEAN's rebirth as MARE at UC Berkeley's Lawrence Hall of Science. MARE has become one of the longest-running and effective multi-disciplinary marine education curricula in the nation. Over the past 20+ years, thousands of children, parents, teachers and administrators have been introduced to and captivated by the power of the ocean in science and literacy education."
"Craig serves as the Center Director for the Center for Ocean Science Education Excellence (COSEE) California and served as the Chairperson of the National COSEE Network in 2003 and 2004. He was nominated by his peers from the 7 COSEE Centers across the nation for two successive terms. Craig has provided leadership with charm and grace over this period and has become a key leader in a multi-agency and organizational effort to define ocean literacy and set benchmarks for ocean science learning. In this role he has been instrumental in strategic national planning efforts and co-led the Ocean Literacy Campaign since 2003 resulting in the development of Ocean Literacy: The Essential Principles of Ocean Sciences Grades K-12. The ocean literacy brochure is being circulated widely and is getting significant play right now!"
Craig's colleagues offered further support in his nomination for this award:
“One of the things that brings power to Craig's work … is his breadth and depth of understanding not only of marine education, but of its relationship to education in general as well as the evolving social and political scene.”
“His leadership on the COSEE Council came at a critical time as the COSEE centers try to define their role in providing marine education and resources to enrich the public's understanding of the ocean. Craig's work as a marine educator is appreciated and revered by all who have had the opportunity to work with him.”