2023 Symposium


The 2023 Symposium will be hosted at the Audubon Aquarium in New Orleans. Located on the banks of the Mississippi River and the French Quarter, the Audubon Aquarium will be a fantastic venue for the ADPA’s long-awaited return to NOLA. The Symposium will be held on Monday, 13 Nov 23 from 10:00 AM to 6:30 PM at Audubon Aquariums, private Downtown Meeting Room. A catered breakfast and lunch will be provided to all Symposium attendees. Registration opens at 9:00 AM.

Immediately following the Symposium, the ADPA will take over the first floor of the Aquarium for three hours, 6:30-9:30 PM, with our industry-renowned Networking Event; light hors d’oeuvres and a special taste of Louisiana will be served along with complimentary refreshments. We will welcome our Corporate Partners to join us at the Networking Event and our Silent Auction fundraiser for the Brett Dodson Scholarship. Symposium and Networking Event Registration are now open at this link, the deadline for registration is 30 October.

13 Nov 23 – 9:00 AMRegistration Opens
13 Nov 23 – 10:00 AMSymposium Commences
13 Nov 23 – 1:00 PMLunch Break
13 Nov 23 – 2:00 PMSymposium Resumes
13 Nov 23 – 6:30 PMSymposium Closes & Networking Event
13 Nov 23 – 8:00 PMSilent Auction Winners Selected
13 Nov 23 – 9:30 PMNetworking Event Ends

The theme of this year’s Symposium is “More than just a DSO”, we can propel ourselves, our facilities, and our industry to the next level as we transition into Dive Program Administrators. 

We will be showcasing presentations from the ADPA president Jake Emmert on Moody Gardens’ collaborative research with the California Academy of Sciences and NOAA. They are undertaking technical deep dive missions to deploy mesophotic coral recruitment structures and survey coral propagation field sites in the Gulf of Mexico as a first-of-its-kind project funded through Deep Water Horizons restoration funds.  We will be briefed by a presentation by Brendan McGrim who will share his experiences of running a dive program during a facility-wide construction project. We will learn from ADPA Secretary Halle Minshall who has been collecting statistics data from ADPA members for the last several years and working to do an analysis of the changing tides in our industry. Halle will share the results and insights from more than 50 contributing facilities and to chart future directions for the ADPA. We will be elevated by a presentation from the Senior Director of Diving Operations at the Georgia Aquarium Jeff Reid, who will be discussing compensation challenges in zoos and aquariums.  An in-depth compensation study was undertaken and analyzed, and Jeff will explain the remedies put in place to ameliorate staff turnover and what you can do at your facility to emulate this work.  We will be challenged to do better by a presentation by Meriah Long on gender bias in CPR training and ways in which instructors can improve the courses they teach and change women’s survival rates from sudden cardiac arrest.  There will be many more presentations from your peers in the zoo and aquarium dive program administration industry and by our Gold Corporate Partners who graciously help sponsor the ADPA. They will be updating us on the current developments with their companies.

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