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UPPER KEYS -- The Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary is seeking applicants for an alternate to represent the Upper Keys diving industry on its advisory council.

The council provides for public participation in sanctuary management and offers advice to the sanctuary superintendent.

"Advisory council members are important conduits from their communities to sanctuary managers," said Sean Morton, sanctuary superintendent. "It is important for Keys residents to provide feedback on issues of interest or concern."

Candidates are selected based on their expertise and experience in relation to the seat for which they are applying, community and professional affiliations and views regarding the protection and management of marine resources. Applicants who are chosen should expect to serve three-year terms.

The advisory council consists of 40 primary and alternate non-governmental members representing a variety of public interest groups. It also includes primary and alternate representatives from 11 government agencies.

Applications are due June 30. To receive an application, or for further information, contact Beth Dieveney at beth.dieveney@noaa.gov or at (305) 809-4700, ext. 228. Application kits may also be downloaded from http://floridakeys.noaa.gov.