Nauts Run The Show in DC


James leads a meeting with Congressman Darren Soto during Capitol Hill Ocean Week

Between Tuesday and Friday of our trip to Washington DC, we talked to 1 congressperson, 1 representative, and 3 staffers while we were in Washington DC for Capitol Hill Ocean Week (CHOW). We talked to them about ocean related topics, like pollution and coral restoration. We talked to them about SCUBAnauts topics like our GALA, MasterNaut projects and the CWVC challenge, and when we talked to our own representative, we talked to them about issues that are happening in their zone, or something we find important enough that they should know about.  


During each of the meetings, we had a naut or nauts in charge of the meeting. The naut or nauts in charge of the meeting were chosen based off the zone of who we were talking to. What the naut or nauts in charge of the meeting did is that they controlled the flow of the meeting. That means they chose which specific nauts they wanted to talk, because there was not enough time for everyone to talk in each meeting. They got to choose what specific topics the group would talk about, and they got to choose the order of which nauts would speak during the meeting. What that did is give each of the nauts more leadership opportunities, gain more leadership skills, and it made sure that what was deemed important to talk about was talked about.  


Congressman Darren Soto


For example, when we were talking to congressman Darren Soto, I was the naut in charge of the meeting. Before the meeting, I had to choose what I wanted to talk to him about and when I had that figured out, I had to choose two nauts that I felt could best help me convey the topics that I chose. After I figured out who was going to talk, I had to decide what exactly about the topic I wanted them to talk about. After all that preparation, we were ready to talk to Darren Soto about the topics of my choice. If you were curious which topics I chose that we would talk about, I chose to talk about the wetlands, vertical oyster gardens (VOG’s), and coral restoration. The reason I chose those topics is because Darren Soto is really focused on keeping Florida beautiful, and a big contributor to Florida’s beauty is our waters. So, I chose the topics that will help protect Florida’s waters. 


I feel that by talking to all the representatives, congresspeople, and staffers that we talked to in Washington DC, we took a big step in the right direction of better protecting our beautiful waters, bringing awareness to all the issues happening in our waters and areas, informing others about what they can do to help protect our waters, and inform others about who SCUBAnauts is and what we do. Without actions like this, we will never fix the many issues happening, and I am quite sure all the nauts in SCUBAnauts International would agree with me. We only make an impact when we work together and inform others. Just by reading this and telling others about this blog post, you are making a difference and helping us help our waters. 


— James K., 2nd Class Naut, Orlando Chapter