Our History

Our history is deeply woven into the creation of the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. We have prevented offshore oil drilling in the greater Monterey Bay area, continuously combatted plastic pollution, ended illegal sand mining along our Sanctuary’s shores and so much more. We’re celebrating 40 years of conserving the Monterey Bay, and we’re looking forward to another four decades of continual work to save our shores.

  • 1978Grassroots

    Formed as a grassroots movement to prevent offshore oil drilling. Dan Haifley, Save Our Shores
  • 1980Incorporated

    Incorporated as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit
  • 1981First Cleanup Day

    Organized the first Coastal Cleanup Day along the North Coast of Santa Cruz.
  • 1985Advocacy

    Advocated for the passage of 26 local ordinances to effectively prevent offshore oil drilling.
  • 1988Conservation Working Group

    Co-founded and chaired the Conservation Working Group to advocate for the best ecological boundary for the Marine Sanctuary.
  • 1992Marine Sanctuary

    Celebrated the establishment of the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary.
  • 1994Dockwalker

    Launched Dockwalker program.
  • 1996Sanctuary Stewards

    Established the Sanctuary Stewards volunteer program.
  • 1999Dockwalker Program Takes Off

    Collaborated with the California Coastal Commission who took Save Our Shores’ Dockwalker program statewide.
  • 2002Fishermen's Forum

    Hosted the first Central California Fishermen’s Forum on marine protected areas.
  • 2006Coastal Cleanup Day

    Became the official Annual Coastal Cleanup Day coordinator for California’s Central Coast.
  • 2009Adopt-A-Beach

    Started the Adopt-A-Beach program
  • 2010Central Coast Sanctuary Alliance

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  • 2015Oppose Sand Mining

    Launched campaign to oppose sand mining on the Sanctuary’s shores.
  • 2017Strategic Vision

    Secured an agreement for shutdown of CEMEX sand mine. Launched new strategic vision based on creating the most important conditions for a thriving Monterey Bay: clean shores, healthy habitats and living waters.
  • 2021Advocacy, Outreach, and Education

    Continuing advocacy to address plastic pollution on our shores and in our waters. Engaging the public in marine conservation, community science, and community action. Revamped our education program and developed K-12 curriculum that aligns with California Science Standards.