Ian Koblick has pioneered ocean exploration since the 1960's, and for the past five decades has developed built and operated ocean and environmental education facilities in the Caribbean and Florida
As an alternate aquanaut in Tektite I and manager and aquanaut in Tektite II, he was one of the nation's first aquanauts. In 1972 he designed and operated "La Chalupa", the most advanced undersea lab in the world. He and a partner converted it to Jules’ Undersea Lodge, the world’s only undersea hotel, which has been in operation since 1986 at the Marine Resources Development Foundation environmental education facility in Key Largo Florida. The Foundation houses and educates more than 4,000 students a year for the past 35 years .( www.MRDF.org ).
Ian created the foundation and has served as president for 50 years. He is a recognized authority on marine resource planning and has consulted on an international level in Japan, Panama, Vietnam, Brazil, the Caribbean, Malta, Italy, Sicily, Croatia and Spain and served the Governor of the Virgin Islands for two years as Special Assistant for Undersea Programs. He co-authored the book, Living and Working in the Sea, a definitive book on the history of saturation diving and underwater habitats and was a Consulting Editor of the 2nd edition of the NOAA Diving Manual. He is a founding Director of Aurora Trust Foundation, which was formed to advance the world’s understanding of the ocean environment, and its marine cultural heritage and to educate the public concerning the historic role the oceans have played in connecting different cultures; its commerce and conflicts. He managed and operated its 85 foot research vessel in the Mediterranean.
His awards and recognitions include:
The Explorers Club Lowell Thomas Award for Underwater Exploration. He has carried 4 Explorers Club Flags in the last 10 year. Author and columnist for The Journal of Diving History. Advisory board Historical Diving Society. Recipient of the NOGI Award for "Distinguished Service”. Medal of Honor, The Daughters of the American Revolution. Member of U.S. State Department U.S./Japan Natural Resources Committee. Blue Key National Honor Fraternity.
Photo: C. Mullen.