St. Pete EDC Partners with Ocean Team to host Marine Science Roundtable

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla.– (August 22, 2018)- The St. Petersburg Area Economic Development Corporation (EDC) hosted its first Marine Science roundtable to better understand the industry and identify areas where the EDC and its community partners can provide support.

More than 20 members of the St. Petersburg Ocean Team and business leaders with close ties to the Marine Science industry gathered at USF College of Marine Science on August 22 for the event, including representatives from Florida Institute of Oceanography, NOAA, and USGS St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center. The event, held in conjunction with the Ocean Team's quarterly meeting, uncovered challenges inhibiting growth within the industry and identified opportunities for the EDC and its community partners to provide support.

“St. Pete is Florida's Marine Science hub," Phil Kramer, Director of Florida Institute of Oceanography said. "Including our partners in economic development in these conversations is critical to sustaining and continuing to broaden our field."

President of Tucker Hall and St. Pete EDC Investor, Bill Carlson facilitated the roundtable, focusing the discussion around talent sourcing, desired vendors, and marketing of the local Marine Science field. The group also uncovered a need for local public relations efforts.

Following the discussion, attendees enjoyed networking and refreshments sponsored by Green Bench Brewing.

As an identified target industry of St. Petersburg's Grow Smarter Strategy, the Marine Science sector is particularly primed for growth within the City. The industry is a major focus of the EDC, as St. Pete's strong coalition of Marine institutions combined with the City's optimal geographical location is a magnet for innovative companies and talent.

"The research and findings of our local institutions is being leveraged globally," J.P. DuBuque, President of the St. Petersburg Area EDC said. "We have a hotbed of some of the world's most innovative marine organizations; all located next to a vibrant, walk-able downtown."

The St. Petersburg EDC looks forward to continuing to support the Marine Sciences sector with the Innovation District, USF College of Marine Science, and other community partners.

About the St. Petersburg Economic Development Corporation

The St. Petersburg Area Economic Development Corporation, a private-public partnership between over 40 investors and the City of St. Petersburg, is a partner in the Grow Smarter Strategy to create awareness of the business climate in St. Petersburg and to invigorate the growth of jobs in the target sectors of marine and life sciences, data analytics, financial and business services, specialized manufacturing and creative arts and design.