Stella Maris Environmental Research Inc

Empowering Citizen Scientists

Melbourne Bch, FL   |  www.stellamarisenvironmentalresearch.org

Mission

Stella Maris Environmental Research, Inc. is an environmental research organization committed to protect, manage, conserve and assist in identifying solutions for inshore, near-shore and offshore coastal ecosystems through the use of charitable, scientific, and educational purposes.

Ruling year info

2015

Executive Director

Mrs. Ashley B. Chelberg

Main address

155 Duval St

Melbourne Bch, FL 32951 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

47-3739298

NTEE code info

Environmental Quality, Protection, and Beautification N.E.C. (C99)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990-N.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

In our over-stimulated world the natural environment provides a much-needed rest to our senses and enhances our relationships with the world we rely on, but we’re losing these wild spaces at every turn. Therefore, let's come together to once again remember the value of our blue and green world.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Environmental Education and Research

Providing local communities with environmental education to make informed decisions about ecosystem protection and management.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Adults

looking into marine sharks, skates and rays in relation to thier role in trophic level dynamics and how their presence affects our oceanic and estuarine environments.

Population(s) Served
Adults

connecting our future scientist with thier marine ecosystems and surrounding environments.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

We strive to empower young scientist and citizen scientist

Population(s) Served
Adults

Stella Maris Environmental Research is a 501(c)(3) not for-profit organization based in the heart of the Archie Carr National Wildlife Refuge (ACNWR). The ACNWR is arguably the densest nesting ground for Loggerhead sea turtles in the world and the most significant nesting grounds for green sea turtles in North America and a minor nesting area for the critically endangered Leatherback sea turtles. Stella Maris Environmental Research is permitted (MTP 20-149) to offer guided sea turtle watches and public nest productivity evaluations within the Refuge. Come and experience a guided sea turtle walk. Guest will learn about nesting sea turtles found on Brevard County beaches, the threats they face and what they can do to help protect them. The evening will culminate with the opportunity to observe a nesting loggerhead.

Population(s) Served
Families

We have once again obtained the permit to provide walks for this community. We have also expanded our permit to include Public Hatch Success Evaluations (MTP 20-149), which are generally called, "daytime digs". As described in the Marine Turtle Handbook, nest "digs" are a vital part of sea turtle conservation. We will excavate the nest and if there are hatchlings that can be released, it is possible to witness this. Come to the "Dig" to find out more about what this is! "While the total number of nests on Florida beaches is important to determine population status, it is only one piece of the puzzle. An equally important piece is estimating how many hatchlings emerge annually (i.e., egg-to-hatchling survivorship). Because sea turtle eggs are subjected to a variety of incubation environments, including many that are affected by human activities, we encourage you to conduct inventories for nest productivity on a representative sample of the nests in your survey area each year." -FWC Sea turtle Handbook.

Population(s) Served
Adults

A research study on the light environment in the ACNWR can provide insight into lighting effects thwarting hatchlings during the most critical journey from emergence to the sea. Determining the “light scape” by measuring light intensity at night on nesting beaches can help regulators determine compliance to Brevard County lighting ordinances and decrease dangers to marine turtles. We are accepting support to supplement our grant for a “Temporal Analysis of Hatchling Orientation” on Brevard County beaches from 1993, 1994 to recent years, which also includes determination of the light environment during nesting hours from Patrick Air Force base to Sebastian Inlet. This study would represent artificial light levels at night on integral sea turtle nesting beaches as well as the potential impacts of artificial lighting affecting future sea turtle population success.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of children able to exercise appropriate control in independent and group activities

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Age groups, Ethnic and racial groups, Family relationships

Related Program

Environmental Education and Research

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of students showing interest in topics related to STEM

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Age groups, Ethnic and racial groups

Related Program

Citizen Scientist

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of released animals that persist

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Age groups

Related Program

Turtle Nest "Digs"

Type of Metric

Context - describing the issue we work on

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Number of conservation areas with evidence that illegal activities causing key threats have declined or stabilized

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Age groups, Ethnic and racial groups

Related Program

Citizen Scientist

Type of Metric

Context - describing the issue we work on

Direction of Success

Increasing

Total pounds of debris collected

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Children and youth

Related Program

Eco Camp

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Our goal at Stella Maris Environmental Research is to cultivate seaside communities dedicated to conserving coastal ecosystems. In our over-stimulated world the natural environment provides a much-needed rest to our senses and enhances our relationships with the world we rely on.
Our team at Stella Maris works to preserve coastal environments while bringing the community together through citizen science, sea turtle research, conservation, guided experiences, and education. Our offered eco camps and youth programs nurture young scientists and future change makers.

Support for Stella Maris Environmental Research goes toward coastal management and outreach that is creating a ripple of change for a better, bluer backyard in Florida.

Our sustainable development goals include providing local communities with environmental education to make informed decisions about ecosystem protection and management. Sea Turtle research dives into the lighting environment in the ACNWR giving insight into the effects of lighting that is thwarting sea turtle hatchlings during the most critical journey from emergence to the sea. We are determining the “light scape” by measuring light intensity at night on nesting beaches that can help regulators determine compliance to Brevard County lighting ordinances and decrease dangers to marine turtles.

Gathering information is important, and more so what is done with it. Our data interpretation can show how the environment is changing, and what direction is necessary for better management. We are working with environmentally focused groups and authorities to create a more cohesive strategy for serving our local ecosystems. Our programs also promote connecting youth with their natural environment; which is paramount when concerning mental health and overall well being of little developing people. Our Stella's Eco & Science Explorers, nest digs, and night walk programs are the route we believe encourages greater environmental connection.

In our few years of formation, we have reached a large audience for sea turtle walks, sea turtle nest digs, Eco Camp, Eco Explorations and research. We are so excited to see our programs grow and reach more people. Our goals are to continue to educate the general masses and encourage citizen scientists through citizen science, research and our other outreach opportunities to preserve and appreciate Earth's wild spaces.

Wesley’s Island Eco Camp is an immersive learning program in which youth are engaged in environmental studies, restoration and stewardship of the Indian River Lagoon. Our goals are to increase environmental knowledge, awareness of issues, and choices that can be made to reduce impacts on natural resources. we are in our 4th year of offering this Eco Camp.

Students will learn about how they are a part of the environment and not separate from it. They will understand how nature is important for our physical and mental health, and how important it is for our very survival. Campers will gain an appreciation for the Lagoon’s intrinsic value, respect for all living things, and a sense of responsibility and stewardship.

Each year we are reevaluating our programs and choosing to expand upon each of them to further our mission and goals. We have gained great support throughout the scientific community and that continues to grow. The communities in which we serve know our name and interest in the work that we perform has grown exponentially. We are excited to stay on this path of expansion.

Financials

Stella Maris Environmental Research Inc
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

Stella Maris Environmental Research Inc

Board of directors
as of 10/26/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Ashley Chelberg

Stella Maris Environmental Research, Inc.

Term: 2014 - 2020

Nichole Perna

South Brevard County EEL program

Elizabeth Simpson

University of South Florida

Kaitlin De'Aeth

NC State

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? No
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? No
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? No
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 10/18/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Gender identity
Female
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data

We do not display disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff.

Equity strategies

Last updated: 01/18/2021

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We use a vetting process to identify vendors and partners that share our commitment to race equity.
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.