Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies

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    January 10, 2005
    Contact:  Theresa Barbo, PCCS, (508) 487-3622 x103       

    CCS Dons Throw-back Uniform

    (Provincetown, MA)-----Affirming the adage that home is where the heart is, the Center for Coastal Studies announced today that the board of directors of the Provincetown-based organization known throughout the region and in some far corners of the globe for its marine mammal and rescue activities had decided to rename itself the Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies.

    “Given the trend toward globalization and today’s organizational preference for acronyms, shorter more corporate sounding names, and even meaningless initials; it may seem anachronistic for us to be lengthening our name,” said PCCS Executive Director Peter Borrelli.  “On the other hand, we believe the longer name conveys more meaning.  Provincetown is a unique location in the western North Atlantic, marking an ecologically significant transition zone between the temperate zone of the south and the sub-boreal zone to the north.  We are in the midst of an extraordinary ecosystem where all things converge.  It is this convergence that fascinates and defines us.”

    The new name is actually the organization’s original name.  Founded in 1976, the Center’s early research and public education focused primarily on coastal processes.  But by the early ‘80s, due largely to a unique collaboration between the non-profit Center and the for-profit Dolphin Fleet Whale Watch of Provincetown, the Center shifted its attention to marine mammals.  As its expertise in the field grew, so did the geographic range of its activities, which soon extended from the West Indies to Canada’s Maritime Provinces.  In 1984 the staff and board of the organization elected to drop Provincetown from the name, believing that it narrowly defined its mission.

    The unanimous vote to change the name was taken during a recent board meeting after nearly a year of discussion.  The resolution was introduced by two local businessmen who are long-time board members: Mark Silva, president of BY&D Insurance, and Mick Rudd, president of Shankpainter Printing.

    “Dropping ‘Provincetown’ from the name may have been the right thing to do at the time,” said Borrelli.  “But today we have a clearer, more discrete and more pragmatic vision.  Though our influence on some issues may be felt far and wide, we are not an international organization.”  Borrelli added that in the age of the Internet the more generic name also runs the risk of being confused with other organizations in the US and abroad.  He noted that there is a Center for Coastal Studies at Texas A&M University in Corpus Christi, another at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in La Jolla, California, and yet another in Mexico affiliated with the School for Field Studies based in Salem, MA.  There are also a number of similar sounding programs; including the Coastal Studies Center at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, ME; the USGS Center for Coastal and Watershed Studies in St. Petersburg, FL; the Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies in Homer, AL; and the Center for Coastal and Marine Resource Studies in Bogor, Indonesia.

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    For information contact:
    Theresa Barbo, Director of Communications, PCCS
     (508) 487-3622 x103



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