Marine Enviromental Awards Luncheon (MEAL)

The Dauphin Island Sea Lab Foundation is hosting the 10th annual Marine Environmental Awards Luncheon on Wednesday October 26, 2022 at the  Riverview Plaza Hotel.    Awards will be presented to an individual and an organization that have made outstanding contributions to marine environmental sustainability in the Alabama Gulf Coast Region.    


2022 MEAL Winners


Gulf Coast Marine Environmental Excellence Awardwhich recognizes an individual who has made outstanding contributions to marine environmental sustainability in the Alabama Gulf Coast Region. Angus R Cooper III

Angus R. Cooper, III has been a natural resource conservationist his entire life. At the age of 10, he implemented a nest box project and grew the wood duck population on family property from 20 to over 400.
In 2004, he was elected to serve on the Alabama Wildlife Federation Board of Directors, Alabama’s oldest and largest citizens conservation organization. Over the next 10 years he served in a variety of AWF leadership capacities including: Wild Turkey Management Committee, Deer Management Committee, Waterfowl Management Committee, Inshore Artificial Reefs Committee, Alabama Artificial Reef Plan Committee, Alabama Nature Center Committee, Legislation Committee, Capital Campaign Committee, Nominating Committee, and Executive Committee.
In 2015, he was elected to serve as AWF President and was re-elected for a second term. During his tenure as AWF President he led:
·         Opening of the NaturePlex at the Alabama Nature Center and a dramatic increase in conservation education programs for youth and adults.
·         Increasing from 1 to 3, the number of AWF wildlife biologists helping private landowners manage wildlife and wildlife habitat across the state
·         Launch of the AWF Cypress Society to expand AWF’s program funding
·         Implementation of the Alabama Artificial Reef Plan
In 2016, he personally led and coordinated a collaborative effort between AWF, Alabama Power Company, and Cooper/T. Smith to repurpose decommissioned boiler equipment from Alabama Power Company and a decommissioned barge from Cooper/T. Smith to establish an offshore artificial reef 23 miles off the Alabama coast in support of the Alabama Artificial Reef Plan.
In 2021, he repeated that leadership and coordinated an Alabama Power Company and Cooper/T. Smith boiler/barge deployment to establish and artificial reef within the AWF Nearshore Artificial Reef Zone, 8 miles south of Dauphin Island.
And today, he is actively engaged in AWF’s new quarter of a million-dollar Oyster Restoration Initiative that will expand the Bender Austal and Boykin Reefs near Dauphin Island by the end of the year.
In addition to his active involvement with AWF, he is also active in Delta Waterfowl and the International Order of St. Hubertus. 

Gulf Coast Marine Enviromental Leadership AwardRecognizes an organization whose efforts have resulted in the improvement of marine environmental sustainability in the Alabama Gulf Coast Region. Alabama Wildlife Federation 

AWF is dynamic, citizen-based conservation organization with over 25,000 members and supporters dedicated to creating and promoting a balance between use, management and protection of Alabama’s wildlife and related natural resources through education, community involvement, and boots-on-the-ground assistance. To achieve that mission, we channel our efforts into three major focus areas:



Angus Cooper, III
Angus Cooper, III
Dave Gallo with Compressed Cup
Dave Gallo with Compressed Cup

Keynote Speaker David Gallo

The keynote speaker at the luncheon will be Dr. David Gallo of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute.  A pioneer in ocean exploration, Dr. Gallo is an enthusiastic ambassador between the sea and those of us on dry land.  Dr. Gallo works to push the bounds of oceanic discovery. Active in undersea exploration he was one of the first oceanographers to use a combination of manned submersibles and robots to map the ocean world with unprecedented clarity and detail.

For more than 30 years, Dr. Gallo has been at the forefront of ocean exploration, participating in and being witness to the development of new technologies and scientific discoveries that shape our view of Planet Earth.

David has participated in expeditions to all of the world’s ocean.   Most recently, he co-led an expedition to create the first detailed and comprehensive map of the RMS Titanic and he co-led the successful international effort to locate the remains of Air France Flight 447. He is presently involved in planning an international expedition to locate and document the wreckage of Ernest Shackleton’s ship, HMS Endurance.