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Press Releases and News

Tampa Bay Watch Earth Day (and Night) Events!

“Earth Day serves as an important reminder to collectively get involved and try to make a difference in our communities,” says Dwayne Virgint, CEO of Tampa Bay Watch. “Through our Earth Day celebrations, our goal is to encourage communities to participate in hopes they continue to become advocates for their local environments.” 

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Tampa Bay Watch partners with Manatee County to plant native grasses at Robinson Preserve

“Manatee county has done an exceptional job with Robinson Preserve. This planting is an opportunity for community members to spend a day at a beautiful park and take part in the process of restoring once degraded habitat,” said Paige Lansky, Native Planting Programs Coordinator for Tampa Bay Watch. 

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Tampa Bay Watch Responds

Recently, Tampa Bay Watch was mentioned in two articles in the St. Pete Catalyst in regard to a complaint by a dolphin watch tour boat operator who purchased an existing business after the Tampa Bay Watch Discovery Center’s eco-vessel had been announced. While we were not asked to comment for either article in the Catalyst, we believe it is important that readers have the opportunity to hear the facts about the situation and the mission and impact of Tampa Bay Watch. CEO Dwayne Virgint voiced a response. 

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New Members Appointed to TBW Board of Directors

Tampa Bay Watch recently welcomed two key members of the community to our board of directors: Carol Marks and Terry McCarthy

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Michelle Yepez Announced as New Development Director

In her role as development director, Yepez will oversee the organization’s corporate and community philanthropy and further deliver growth through fundraising, donor relations, partnership development and other collaborative initiatives. 

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Volunteer Boaters Needed for 28th Annual Fishing Line Island Cleanup

The 28th Annual Fishing Line Island Cleanup, organized by Tampa Bay Watch and Audubon Florida, will take place throughout the weeks of Monday, October 4 – Monday, October 18. Volunteers with boats are being recruited to independently remove tangled fishing line from mangroves and shorelines of specific bird habitat site locations.

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image: tbw lighthouse

Tampa Bay Watch Leadership Update

Tampa Bay Watch is excited to announce changes to its executive-leadership staff. Dwayne Virgint has been promoted to the CEO position, and will be responsible for the organizational leadership and implementing the strategic direction of Tampa Bay Watch. Peter Clark will continue as President of Tampa Bay Watch with a new focus on major development activities, community outreach, and bay restoration initiatives for Tampa Bay Watch. 

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Tampa Bay Watch Wedding Stroll

Tampa Bay Watch plans their 4th Annual Afternoon Wedding Stroll at their Marine Education Center on Sunday, May 16, 2021 from 1-5 PM. The Wedding Stroll is free and open to the public and will feature wedding professionals from all over the Tampa Bay area including caterers, florists, DJs/ entertainment specialists, photographers, and more. For health and safety of attending guests, the total number guests will be limited to a maximum of thirty in each hour for the duration of the event.

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Tampa Bay Watch announces new Board of Directors

Tampa Bay Watch is proud to announce new officers to its Board of Directors: Mark Chmielewski (left) is Chair, Mike Wilson is Vice-Chair, and Travis Parker is Secretary/Treasurer. Mark Chmielewski is Managing Partner of MC Strategic and served as Vice-Chair of the Tampa Bay Watch Board of Directors over the last two years. He has advised individuals, companies, and charitable organizations on Investment Strategies, Insurance, Tax and Estate Planning matters for over 30 years. Mike Wilson is retired from General Dynamics and Travis Parker is Vice President at Biltmore Construction.

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image: BGIC kids

Tampa Bay Watch announces Grant from The Community Foundation of Tampa Bay

The generous $25,000 grant will support Bay Grasses in Classes (BGIC) which provides middle and high school students with an educational resource to learn about ecological practices while enhancing science-based curriculums at their schools and building environmental stewardship.

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logo: duke energy

Tampa Bay Watch receives $10,000 grant from Duke Energy Foundation

Tampa Bay Watch received a $10,000 grant from the Duke Energy Foundation to create powerful communities in Tampa Bay through their Bay Grasses in Classes initiative.

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logo: OTB

Tampa Bay Watch selected as a 2020 One Tampa Bay honoree by the Tampa Bay Business Journal

The Tampa Bay Business Journal has selected Tampa Bay Watch to be an honoree for One Tampa Bay, an award that honors nonprofit organizations and for-profit companies for their philanthropic efforts. This year’s class features 17 corporate philanthropy honorees and 21 nonprofit organizations, out of over 220 nominations. These awards bring together the region’s nonprofit organizations with the companies going above and beyond when it comes to giving back to the community.

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image: child at touch tank DC

Tampa Bay Watch Discovery Center Announces Sea Science After-Care Academy and ExPIERences

Is your child interested in science or marine biology? Come ExPIERience Tampa Bay Watch Discovery Center’s fun filled after-school programs on the St. Pete Pier! Whether you are currently enrolled in school, virtual learning, or homeschooling, these supplemental marine science programs will keep your students engaged and excited about learning.

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image: handful of scallops

Tampa Bay Watch’s 26th Annual Scallop Search Yields 133 Scallops in Do-it-yourself Format

Tampa Bay Watch recently held their annual Great Bay Scallop Search, but participants conducted the survey on their own this year in order to allow for safe social distancing. 36 teams of volunteer boaters and kayakers snorkeled in Lower Tampa Bay, finding a grand total of 133 scallops throughout August 15-23.

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