The International SeaKeepers Society Â hosted Bal de la Mer and Foundersâ€™ Dinner as a combined event to recognize Fabien Cousteua as the 2015 SeaKeeper Award Recipient.Â The event was held at a private residenceÂ in Fort Lauderdale where guests were treated to an incredibleÂ evening of cocktails, dining and entertainment in a waterfront ambiance. The evening celebrated the work ofÂ Fabien Cousteau highlighting his extensive achievements, and presenting the latest 2015 missions aboard the SeaKeepersÂ DISCOVERY Yacht Fleet.
Son of Jean Michel Cousteau III who received the SeaKeeper Award in 1996 and grandson of Jacques YvesÂ Cousteau, Fabien continues his familyâ€™s legacy to protect and preserve the ocean as a dedicated activist,Â explorer, and filmmaker. Fabien is well-known for his shark documentaries including â€œAttack of the MysteryÂ Shark,â€ based on a series of shark attacks along the New Jersey shoreline in 1916, and â€œMind of a Demon,â€Â which focuses on the mysterious nature of sharks.
Florida was selected this year in tribute to one of Fabienâ€™s most recent undertakings, Mission 31, the longestÂ expedition to take place at the worldâ€™s only underwater marine laboratory, Aquarius located off of the Florida Keys. The mission honored the 50th anniversary of his grandfatherâ€™s original underwater living experimentÂ Conshelf Two, by expanding the Cousteau legacy going deeper (63 feet) and staying longer underwater for aÂ total of 31 days aboard Aquarius. A feature documentary film of Mission 31 and a book documenting theÂ adventures of Mission 31 is now underway. In addition the Fabien Cousteau Ocean Learning Center in theÂ Florida Keys is under development and will be a virtual STEM platform to afford children around the world theÂ opportunity to learn about oceans and engage with aquanauts, ocean explorers and marine biologists directlyÂ through social media and interactive videos.
In 2010, Fabien founded the nonprofit organization Plant A Fish, designed to empower communities andÂ children to help restore local water ecosystems through the healthy â€œreplantingâ€ of key marine species with theÂ ultimate goal of planting 1 billion â€œfishâ€ worldwide. Fabien is a member of numerous charitable boardsÂ including The International SeaKeepers Society, Water Innovation Alliance, Millennium Project, Blue OceanÂ Film Festival, Plastic Pollution Coalition, One World One Ocean, Points of Light, Antarctic Ocean AllianceÂ and the New York Harbor School.
Photos by: Brittany Robey