Marine Life Studies Raises Funds for Children’s Free Oceanic Programs
PEBBLE BEACH, California - February 22, 2010 - At 5’4’’ with thick auburn hair graying at the temples, Peggy West-Stap, has the passion and dedication of a young Olympian. As the Founder of Marine Life Studies, a non-profit organization devoted to the study and conservation of marine mammals, Stap spends most of her time in the Pacific Ocean observing and recording the behavior of Orca and Humpback whales.
In addition to collecting scientific data from her small research vessel moored at Moss Landing, Stap takes photographs of her wild, multi-ton subjects, swimming cheek to cheek with Humpback whales in the warm waters of Maui. Now she wants to bring her brand of enthusiasm to students in Monterey.
Stap displayed brilliant photos of Monterey Orcas while expressing her passion for whales at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am Golf Tournament, last week. From a booth set up at Saturday’s Tournament entrance, Stap shared her knowledge of marine life research while raising funds for the Joey Jones Scholarship Program.
Stap’s non-profit organization created the Joey Jones Scholarship and Education Fund in honor of Moss Landing resident and commercial fisherman, Joey Jones, who lost his life at sea April 3, 2008. Joey Jones’ love of the sea and fishing was the inspiration behind the scholarship. “Regulation, fishing closures and environmental concerns have created tensions between fisherman and those attempting to create sustainability and a healthy ocean,” says Stap. “Joey wanted to bridge the gap between the marine science community and commercial fishing community through cooperation and dialogue.” The Joey Jones Scholarship Program will provide free educational opportunities for students interested in pursuing oceanic studies.
Stap and a team of fellow volunteers raised more money than any other charity participating in the Birdies for Charity event sponsored by the Tournament’s host, The Monterey Peninsula Foundation. The entire month of February is dedicated to raising funds for the Scholarship and The Foundation will match an additional 10% for all donations, allowing Marine Life Studies to receive 110% of charitable gifts.
On the Monday after the Tournament, Stap conducted the first free educational class to third graders at Stevenson School, Carmel Campus. “The next generation holds the keys to better understand the importance and beauty of our planets’ ocean ecology,” says Stap. “I want to offer youngsters a chance to pursue an education in oceanic studies. It is so rewarding to give something back to those who will continue to value our oceans and
For further information or to make a charitable contribution to the Joey Jones Scholarship visit Marine Life Studies Donations.