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The Seacology Prize


Each year, we award the Seacology Prize to an islander for exceptional achievement in preserving island environments and culture. This honor comes with an award of $10,000 and (in non-pandemic times) a trip to the United States for a public award ceremony in October. You can watch the 2021 prize ceremony, which was held online, at the link below.

2021 recipient: Saw John Aung Thong

The first Seacology Prize went to Chief Ulu of Samoa, in the South Pacific. To protect his village’s ancestral rainforest, the chief resisted years of pressure from logging companies.

Since then, Seacology has honored dozens more determined and inspiring men and women from around the world. Every one of them has faced resistance, taken risks, and made personal sacrifices. Some have faced grave personal danger—but persisted to protect the islands they call home. Here are a few recent recipients:

Recent recipients


Omar Abdallah Juma, of Wasini Island, has brought communities, governments, and fishermen together to protect Kenya’s great marine biodiversity. He championed creating a community marine reserve and developing sustainable livelihoods—two key ways to protect the environment for future generations.


Peter Kallang led a grassroots indigenous movement on Borneo, which stopped a mega-dam that would have destroyed precious rainforest and displaced thousands of people. He continues to work tirelessly, against powerful opposition, to preserve Borneo’s forests and culture.


Patricia Lamelas has devoted her life to conservation in the rapidly changing Dominican Republic. She has worked to find sustainable livelihoods for people who relied on cutting mangroves to make charcoal and helped to educate a generation about the importance of the unique coastal environment.

The Seacology Prize is underwritten by Seacology’s President Ken Murdock, in honor of his mother, Lalovi Fish Murdock.