A Letter to Mote
by Mote volunteer and donor Dwight Davis
What does it take to make a person a Mote donor?
It must be different for different people. For me, it was a love of the sea from earliest childhood. That was in Tampa, way back in the mists of time. Later in Hollywood, Fla., as a teenager and an avid fisherman and a collector of things washed up on the beach, my interest in marine life became even keener.
When I retired from advertising and moved to Sarasota in 1986, I discovered early-on that if you don't have some consuming interest when you no longer work, you go nuts. Not a golfer and no longer able to play tennis due to knee injury, I naturally gravitated to Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium. That's where the fish were, and I felt very much at home as a volunteer Aquarium guide.
In time, I did other things to help Mote succeed. I wrote newspaper articles, conducted Lab tours and training courses for new volunteers. (In fact, the labor provided by hundreds of Mote volunteers is a major factor in the rapid growth of Mote's marine research programs.)
The more I did, the more it satisfied me to contribute to Mote. It wasn't just about giving my time, but about supporting the Lab financially as well.
When my wife Tessie and I created a Charitable Remainder Unitrust, it was natural that Mote Marine Laboratory be named a beneficiary. Although Tessie's interest in marine things was primarily in the kitchen, she was very interested in supporting Mote.
The work taking place today in Mote's seven research centers—from Coastal Ecology to Fisheries, Aquaculture to Ecotoxicology, Corals, Marine Mammals and Sea Turtles and Sharks—has earned worldwide recognition and respect. Together with Mote's Education programs, these efforts contribute importantly to the conservation of marine resources everywhere.
I urge all Mote Members to consider some form of a legacy gift to this outstanding marine research organization and its dedicated staff. Whatever you give to support Mote today will live on long after you, and do the world a power of good.