For the past 20 years, the International SeaKeepers Society has paid special tribute to yacht owners and others who support its mission of ocean conservation and preservation. Particularly, the non-profit honors those who go above and beyond in their support with its SeaKeeper of the Year award. Earlier this month, the organization recognized Michael Saylor (above left), an avid yacht owner and entrepreneur. Thanks to Saylor, dozens of scientific ocean-research and data-collection trips have occurred, all aboard his various vessels.
Saylor prefers keeping a low profile, letting his yachts and companies take the spotlight instead. However, his yachts and crews could not make their important environmental contributions without his initial vision. Having enjoyed yachting as both a charterer and an owner, Saylor had an idea. He saw a better way to introduce the yachting experience to the public than the traditional buying and chartering marketing methods. In establishing Fleet Miami, he foresaw a special collection comprised of various LOAs to suit various interests. A member-driven organization, Fleet Miami would further provide the boats and yachts all year long all around the world. Today, Fleet Miami counts eight boats in its mini-armada, including the superyachts Usher, Harle, Andiamo, and Mystique.
Also today, Fleet Miami is far more involved in conducting International SeaKeepers Society support trips. The involvement started with the installation of special equipment measuring seawater temperature, salinity, and other factors, as well as atmospheric conditions, on one yacht. Now, each of the eight yachts executes three to four scientific missions on a monthly basis. They do so on both sides of the Atlantic, and even while crossing the Atlantic. Furthermore, they do so by welcoming scientists onboard whenever possible.
“Wherever” is the key word. Thanks to Saylor, scientists have sampled plankton in waters they could not access due to prohibitive costs. In addition, researchers have tagged tiger sharks in the Bahamas, to see how the populations react and recover from hurricanes and other factors. Even the film crew for the ever-popular Shark Week has benefitted, thanks to Fleet Miami and Saylor.
Editor’s note: Pictured with Saylor are (left to right) Evva Fenison, SeaKeepers chairman Michael Moore, and SeaKeepers board member Mark Luther.