Kelly Thompson

Kelly Thompson Outreach Director St. Johns Riverkeeper Kelly's job responsibilities include expanding the St. Johns Riverkeeper's geographic outreach efforts by organizing engaging community events and programs, developing partnerships with local organizations and businesses, and connecting citizens to the water through everyday action opportunities along the St. Johns River. A Georgia native, Kelly grew up spending summers on the coast, where her outside experiences kept her closely connected to the water and everything it touched. With a strong passion for marine conservation, Kelly received her Bachelor of Science in Biology from Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee. Before joining the St. Johns Riverkeeper team, she started her coastal career as a Naturalist and Sea Turtle Technician on Sea Island, GA (one of Georgia’s 14 barrier islands) and spent four years working in coastal outreach and education with One Hundred Miles, an environmental advocacy nonprofit on the Georgia coast. In coastal Florida, Kelly has also worked with the Sarasota Dolphin Research Program conducting wild bottlenose dolphin research and coordinated sea turtle rehabilitation and education efforts with Clearwater Marine Aquarium. Outside of work, Kelly enjoys nature photography, kayaking, and a good book. With a recent move to Jacksonville, she is looking forward to exploring the natural wonders of Florida and everything the St. Johns River has to offer.
Waterkeepers Florida Launches #MomsForCleanWater Campaign Inspired by Florida's First Lady

Waterkeepers Florida Launches #MomsForCleanWater Campaign Inspired by Florida’s First Lady

Earlier this year, Florida’s First Lady Casey DeSantis made a powerful statement: “We feel an obligation as parents and feel that we should work on behalf of all the parents of this great state to make sure their children have a clean environment and clean water to grow up on.” Waterkeepers Florida applaud the First Lady’s commitment to restoring and protecting our state’s waters, although it is clear our state legislature does not share that same sense of urgency. Unfortunately, this legislative session failed to yield any meaningful protective policies for Florida’s waterways. Florida Moms demand better for our children …

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St. Johns Riverkeeper, Algae in the St. Johns, Drayton Island

Is the St. Johns River in Danger? Don’t Feed the Algae

  Algae bloom season is already upon our St. Johns River. Since mid-April, St. Johns Riverkeeper has received dozens of reports from Lake George and Palatka and all the way to Jacksonville. Our team is saddened by the images flooding our communication channels of the green muck coating our River. This early start could potentially be a sign of worse blooms to come as sunny days, water temperatures, and rains continue to rise. Nutrients? Aren’t those good for the River? Algae blooms are visible symptoms of sickness and too much nutrient pollution in our waterways. Nutrients, like nitrogen and phosphorus, are …

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Saving Julington-Durbin Preserve!

THE THREAT The last remaining wild Florida paradise that has not been paved over inside the Bartram Park community was under threat. Julington-Durbin Preserve is a 2,031-acre peninsula formed at the confluence of Julington and Durbin creeks. The property was purchased in 2001 for $16.5 million as part of Jacksonville’s Preservation Project, a land acquisition program conceived by Mayor John Delaney to manage growth, protect environmentally sensitive lands, improve water quality, and provide access to the City’s natural areas. The developers who originally sold the Julington-Durbin Preserve property to the City of Jacksonville and State of Florida for conservation wanted …

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When the Ship Hits the Fan! River Rising Hurricane Preparedness Town Hall June 21

BY KELLY PATTON, Outreach Director, St. Johns Riverkeeper The term “hurricane preparedness” has become as familiar to us as Pavlov’s bell was to his dogs. When we hear those words on the radio, we adjust our shopping lists and make sure we have the supplies we need to hold out through the storm. Every year, “hurricane preparedness” messages remind us that we live within a dynamic and vulnerable system affected by Mother Nature and must take precautions to keep ourselves and our families safe. But are our local elected officials hearing that same message? While we focus on our shopping …

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On The River – April is Earth Month

BY KELLY PATTON, Outreach Director, St. Johns Riverkeeper CELEBRATE AND PROTECT CLEAN WATER Last month, the world celebrated World Water Day to highlight the importance of freshwater and advocate for sustainable management of this natural resource. In the Jacksonville area, we are fortunate to have water all around us. On average, 5.4 billion gallons of water are discharged from the mouth of the St. Johns River into the Atlantic Ocean every day. This vast network of water forming 310 miles upstream is a significant part of our identity as a River City. Let’s raise our voices for clean water. This …

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