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Our Mission

The Center for Open Exploration (C4OE) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to community-based projects which approach marine science and technology from an interdisciplinary perspective, empowering stakeholders of all ages to become ocean explorers and leaders.

Founded in 2015, C4OE aims to connect all aspects of STEAM and make science happen.  We partner with local organizations to empower community members to become scientists and explorers in culturally-appropriate ways.

Programs include various "citizen science" projects, marine debris removal days, SCUBA training, and ROV-building workshops for all ages.  

C4OE brings training, equipment, and adventure to the communities we work with.  Current and past programs have taken place in:  Tampa / St. Petersburg, Florida; Seattle, Washington and the Salish Sea; Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary, Michigan; and the Eastern Arctic (Nunavut, Greenland, Norway).

Our organizational partners include the Ocean Media Institute, Tampa Bay Estuary Program, PVCROV, NAUI's Green Diver Initiative and PADI's Project AWARE, St. Pete Makers, Seattle Dive Tours, and Great Lakes Divers.

Our Board Members hail from all areas of environmental leadership and education, and come together with the goal of bringing training and education outside the classroom.  Learn more about our Board below, and visit Programs & Projects to read about our current initiatives.

C4OE Board

Erica Moulton

St. Petersburg, Florida, USA

C4OE Founder

STEM Director,

St. Petersburg College


Sean Nordquist

St. Petersburg, Florida, USA

C4OE Co -Founder

Public Outreach Programs/Film

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Ali Hochberg

Bermuda Institute of Ocean Science, Bermuda


Education Director

Click a Board Member's photo to learn more!

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Seattle, Washington, USA

Ocean Humanities Professor

PADI Instructor


Mary Ellen


Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Royal Canadian Geographical Society Teacher of the Year




Alpena, Michigan, USA

NOAA Archaeologist,

Thunder Bay National Marine 

Everyone makes 
a difference.
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