PREP: How’d you get started in protecting clean water?
Simone: This is such a tough question! If I have to pick just one, it definitely has to be scuba diving. I am an avid scuba diver who grew up diving in the Pacific Northwest. I spent my early diving years stuffed into a dry suit exploring vast underwater meadows of plumose anemones and watching Giant Pacific Octopuses peek out from underneath sunken boats in Puget Sound. I spent my college and graduate school years diving in Monterey, California and even got my scientific and rescue diving certification while working on my thesis. I actually prefer cold water diving to warm water diving (even though the Great Barrier Reef is AMAZING!), and I hope to get out in the Seacoast water soon!
PREP: What’s been your proudest moment as a clean water champion?
PREP: What’s one simple thing you would tell somebody to do to protect the places around the Seacoast they love?
Simone: I would encourage people to tell the story of their special places to others. Take time to reflect on the places that you love so much and think about how you would communicate that love to others. Then go do it! As a photographer, I find the most fulfilling way to show others how amazing places are is to upload photos to social media with a blurb about what makes that place special. However, for others, it could be an anecdote about a time you spent there, a poem, a drawing, or simply taking someone with you to experience that place first-hand. Connecting sense of place to creativity, and sharing that creativity with others, deepens our personal connection to the landscapes that sustain us, and these connections must be in place if we have any hope of taking further steps to protect those places. So keep advocating for conservation policy and clean water practices, but make sure to work just as hard at sustaining your personal connection to the places that you love and be active in inspiring others to connect with them, too!