Monterey Bay Aquarium Honors Local Leaders In Ocean Conservation and Education

Dec 05, 2018

Monterey Bay Aquarium holds an annual reception to thank businesses and community organizations that help advance ocean conservation in the region. The 2018 event also spotlights three individuals whose contributions deserve special acknowledgement.

Monterey Bay Aquarium recognizes the following 2018 honorees:

  • Tammy Blount-Canavan, Monterey County Convention and Visitors Bureau
    Blount-Canavan and her colleagues at the Visitors Bureau created the educational outreach campaign Sustainable Moments, informing Monterey-region visitors how to engage in responsible tourism practices. They furthered this effort by organizing the Sustainable Moments Collective, a group of government agencies and nonprofit organizations with shared goals of alternative transportation, waste management, water quality and conservation and environmental protection.


  • Janine Chicourrat, Portola Hotel and Spa
    The Portola Hotel and Spa has been an aquarium Business Partner since 1991. As its General Manager, Janine Chicourrat was instrumental in demonstrating its commitment to sustainability. Renovations at the hotel earned it the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED® Certification, the only hotel on the California Central Coast to earn this level of accreditation in the Existing Building category. Most recently, the Portola joined the aquarium in its efforts to reduce plastic pollution by placing recyclable aluminum water bottles in guest rooms instead of single-use plastic bottles.


  • Rachel Hitchcock, Pajaro Valley Unified School District
    Hitchcock is an elementary science specialist at Amesti Elementary School in Pajaro Valley Unified School District and longtime participant in Monterey Bay Aquarium's Teacher Professional Development programs. This year, she also played a lead role in the aquarium’s Science Learning Leaders Institute, working with other teachers to increase their students’ interest and motivation in science.

Since 2002, business partners have helped the aquarium admit more than 800,000 people in the community free of charge, including underserved audiences who visit through Free to Learn, Shelf to Shore and annual Community Open House programs.

More information and a list of aquarium business partners are available online:

About the Monterey Bay Aquarium
With a mission to inspire conservation of the ocean, the Monterey Bay Aquarium is the most admired aquarium in the United States, a leader in science education, and a voice for ocean conservation through comprehensive programs in marine science and public policy. Everything we do works in concert to protect the future of our blue planet. More information at

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The mission of the nonprofit Monterey Bay Aquarium is to inspire conservation of the ocean.