Mark Schrader of Around the Americas, 2011 YachtWorld Hero

Who is Your Hero?

Mark Schrader of Around the Americas lives his message that our oceans need help. Humans are creating enormous and potentially disastrous problems for fragile marine ecosystems upon which we, as humans, are utterly dependent. The relationships are simple – if we don’t take care of the ocean, the ocean won’t take care of us. Those who use and enjoy the ocean should be the leaders in marine conservation and education. After two single-handed circumnavigations of the world, Mark has seen widespread, destructive changes to the ocean environment – and he decided to do something to focus more attention on the problems.

How has your nominee made a difference for the better?

As Project Director and Captain, Mark developed the Around the Americas project. He brought together a committed team of sailors, scientists, teachers and conservationists – outfitted the 64’ S/V Ocean Watch and launched the 28,000 nautical mile circumnavigation of the Americas. With multiple agendas of creating wider awareness about the state of our ocean; collecting scientific data; recording images and stories and sharing this information for educational purposes, Mark and his AtA crew focused international attention on important and urgent ocean-health issues.

How will being recognized as a YachtWorld Hero further your nominees cause?

Going forward, the true challenge for Mark and the Around the Americas team will be finding meaningful ways to inspire and engage the public in a call to action. The job is straightforward: to help citizens and communities understand the threats to our oceans and to prove through our research and example that individuals can truly make a difference. Spreading the lessons of the AtA expedition is a very important part of the mission, and being recognized as a YachtWorld Hero will help further the education agenda.

Please share any website or online articles about your nominee’s activities. The website for the ATA project, www.AroundtheAmericas.org has stories, articles, images and research information from the voyage. Cruising World Magazine wrote published five feature articles about the voyage the recently released book, One Island, One Ocean, written by Herb McCormick and published by Weldon-Owen, tells the Around the Americas story with beautiful images and words.

Mark was nominated by Bonnie Robertson, Executive Director of the Northwest Yacht Brokers Association

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