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Student Start(up) Spotlight - Ocean Rescue Alliance Int.



Why we love Ocean Rescue Alliance Int. and student founder Shelby Thomas

Ocean Rescue Alliance Int, or ORAI, is a nonprofit organization that is passionate about marine conservation and restoration.


Shelby Thomas is an incredibly passionate leader and doctoral student at University of Florida. Shelby’s vision for a better world through marine conservation is inspiring.


“Be each other's supporters and help each other grow. You miss every opportunity you do not take, so choose to take action. Follow your heart and passions to find your purpose. Put energy into things that excite you and challenge you to grow.”


Where they are at

ORAI’s mission of Saving Our Oceans, One Reef At A Time has led to developing innovative techniques to restore marine environments. ORAI uses artificial structures to enhance marine environments, build marine habitats, conduct restoration, protect coast lines, and connect communities through art including Memorial Reefs and Artistic Sculptures.


The ORAI project evolved from the 1000 Mermaids Artificial Reef Project. ORAI merged the passion of art from the 1000 Mermaids Project to further expand new art initiatives that connect the local community culture and history. They utilize art as a problem solver to connect people with the ocean.


Where they are going

ORAI is using all fronts of innovation and technology to create a positive impact on our oceans. In addition to artificial reef structure products ORAI offers NFTs for conservation.


In addition to Shelby’s work as the CEO of ORAI she also is creating the future as:

CEO of 1000 Mermaids Artificial Reef Project

CEO of Tidal Sails US

Director of Science for Reefline

Board member for WAV Alliance

Board member for Beyond Coral Foundation


Check out more of Shelby’s inspiring work in marine conservation and restoration here - https://linktr.ee/OceanRescueAlliance


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