Conservation made fun

Published: Thursday, January 24, 2013 at 09:27 AM.

A native of Vero Beach, Riney said he grew up an outdoorsman, loving time on the water and in nature. He was also raised by entrepreneurial parents and that diverse background helped create his own non-profit as well as Expedition Florida 500.

His passion for the water fed his scientific search and after studying business at the University of Florida he “cut his teeth” in business before returning to his passion for the water.

Riney said he was in a unique situation – scientists have difficulty with the business end of marine life; those on the business end, creating products from the marine world for example, could not speak expertly to the science.

“I’m wearing both hats,” Riney said. “I know the science side and I know the business side. I was something of an intermediary.”

After spending some time in the Bahamas, his love of the water once again became his mistress.

He moved back to Vero Beach, sold his belonging and, as he put it, “jumped off the cliff” and established his non-profit Mother Ocean.

“The mission of the non-profit is to create, inspire and empower ocean advocates worldwide,” Riney said. “I hope, with the year’s worth of paddling, we can raise a mass amount of awareness so people can learn to respect and appreciate these waterways. We want to make sure these waterways are here 500 years from now.”

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