Kacy Cooper: Managing the growth of a Monterey kelp restoration effort

Hello everyone! This summer I’ll be continuing to work with the Giant Giant Kelp Restoration Project (G2KR), which was recently incorporated within the California Kelp Restoration Corps. We are a volunteer run, kelp restoration non-profit that aims to engage with Monterey’s passionate dive community and conduct active restoration. Over the past year, our organization has grown exponentially and our work is getting more complex. We now coordinate the efforts of over 100 certified Kelp Forest Restoration Speciality divers and engage with over 600 interested folks. We have our sights set on (hopefully) expanding our project to include more restoration sites around the Monterey Peninsula.

We’ve already had quite an exciting summer! Channel Island Expeditions generously donated all vessel and crew time for their charter, The Vision. On June 13 and 14, we were able to get a record-breaking number of kelp restoration divers on the project site culling urchins!

Pictured: Executive Director, Keith Rootsaert, mapping out culling assignments for buddy groups aboard the Vision

In addition to the diving-related tasks, another goal of this summer is to address how to increase the capacity of the organization to allow for continued growth. On July 3, I facilitated the CKRC’s first annual Board Retreat, where we dove into complex discussions on our Mission, Vision, and Values, began to develop long-term goals, and discussed how to structure our organization to accomodate more volunteer support out of the water. I’m now busy organizing the outcomes of those discussions and will continue to meet with the other Board members throughout the summer to finalize.

Lastly, if you have a Disney+ subscription, check out the new National Geographic wildlife documentary series, “America the Beautiful”. Our project was featured in Episode 6: Brave New World. Look out for my bright blue mask and fins (in the picture below)!

May be an image of 2 people
Pictured: Kacy Cooper and Keith Rootsaert filming kelp restoration efforts for National Geographic’s “America the Beautiful”.

Leave a Reply