We are thrilled to share that Chuck and Kara Curry are our 2022 REEF Volunteers of the Year. Chuck joined REEF in 2013, and Kara joined a few years later in 2016, after meeting Chuck during a dive trip to Cuba. Since then, they have both joined the ranks as some of the top surveyors for the REEF Volunteer Fish Survey Project. Collectively, they have submitted over 2,500 surveys in the VFSP database. In 2022 alone, they conducted 448 surveys. Unsurprisingly, Chuck and Kara have both achieved the coveted Golden Hamlet award for submitting over 1,000 surveys.
They are both Expert Level surveyors in multiple regions, including the Tropical Western Atlantic (TWA), Hawaii (HAW), Central Indo-Pacific (CIP), and South Pacific (SOP). Chuck is also a Level 5 surveyor in the US/Canada Pacific Coast (PAC) region. While they conduct REEF surveys while scuba diving, they are also avid surveyors while snorkeling and freediving as well. In addition to their huge contributions to the VFSP database, they are always happy to share their extensive fish ID knowledge with others, whether it's on a REEF Trip, on REEF's Facebook ID groups, by helping write new REEF Fish ID Curricula, or through teaching a REEF Fishinar.
Beyond their role as citizen scientists, they are also generous financial supporters of REEF. Thank you Chuck and Kara for your incredible dedication and service to REEF's mission. We are honored to celebrate you as our 2022 Volunteers of the Year. To read more about Chuck and Kara, check out their 'Faces of REEF' profiles here and here. Click here to see profiles of all past REEF Volunteers of the Year.