By Nikki Dix
I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving!
Every Thanksgiving for the past five years, I have returned from the NERRS Annual Meeting on what we call the “annual meeting high”. Spending a week with colleagues from around the nation, discussing and debating priorities and issues related to coastal management, energizes me!
I am reminded of the incredible brain power and passion within the NERR System and I am so proud to be a part of it. This year, there was a heightened focus on coastal resilience since many of the Reserves were affected by hurricanes. Our hosts, the Mission Aransas NERR in Texas, are still recovering from Hurricane Harvey.
Meeting attendees spent a day around the Reserve and the town of Port Aransas helping clean up (see https://www.facebook.com/manerr/).
Staff from the Jobos Bay NERR in Puerto Rico stayed home but joined some of the meeting activities remotely via Skype. The love and support flowing to them from Texas was palatable. My main take-away was that, just like estuaries, coastal communities are resilient. We were hit hard this year, but we will build back stronger. And, on this Thanksgiving, I am so grateful for the NERRS family who reminded me of that.