On October 21, 2011 Monmouth University’s Urban Coast Institute (“UCI”) honored PQA Managing Partner and former Belmar mayor Ken Pringle with its 2011 State Coastal Leadership Award. Ocean explorer, environmentalist and film producer Jean-Michel Cousteau was also honored with the UCI’s prestigious Champion of the Ocean Award.
The awards luncheon followed the 7th Annual Future of the Ocean Symposium, at which Jean-Michel Cousteau gave the keynote: The Sustainable Future: Preserve the Ocean, Protect Ourselves, which included clips from a soon-to-be-released documentary honoring the 100th Anniversary of the birth of his father, Jacques-Yves Cousteau.
Pringle served as the mayor of the Borough of Belmar from 1990 to 2010. During his tenure, Belmar established a natural beach area, which serves as a least tern nesting area, and worked with the local diving community to institute an annual underwater cleanup of the Shark River. In addition, Belmar was the first community in the state to label its storm drains with their destination body of water. Pringle led the effort to have Belmar’s Shark River receive the first in the state of New Jersey designation as a “Federal No Discharge Zone.”
In 2001, Belmar became the first municipality in the nation to restrict smoking on its beaches, an idea that was soon adopted by a series of California beach communities. Pringle was an advocate for federal beach nourishment funding and in 1997, Belmar was part of the largest beach nourishment project in U.S. history. In 1998, Pringle was invited ot testify before the Committee on Environment and Public Works of the United States Senate in support of the Water Resources Development Act of 1998, which contained important elements regarding federal funding for shore protection. He has received many awards and honors, including the Elected Leadership Award from the Jersey Shore Partnership in 2009.
Pringle has served as a member of the Urban Coast Institute Advisory Committee, since its inception in 2005. The mission of the UCI is to serve the public interest as a forum for research, education, and collaboration that fosters the application of the best available science and policy to support healthy and productive coastal ecosystems and a sustainable and economically vibrant future for coastal communities.