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Longboat Key Monday, Aug. 9, 2021 5 months ago

Save our Seabirds hires new CEO

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Aaron Virgin comes to the organization from previous role with Mote.

Save Our Seabirds recently appointed Aaron Virgin as its new chief executive officer.

David Pilston, the nonprofit’s previous CEO, announced his retirement this year. Pilston and his wife will be moving to Europe in September following his nine-year tenure.

Save our Seabirds reopened to the public in July after months of COVID-19 related closure.

With over 20 years of experience, Virgin brings an extensive background in wildlife and environmental issues to the nonprofit. Most recently, he served as the philanthropy officer for Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium. During his time there, Virgin utilized his background in natural sciences to foster a unique dialogue with Mote’s longtime supporters and prospects, and raised major gifts for research projects and operating support. 

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“We are thrilled to welcome Aaron to our team at Save Our Seabirds as his strong passion for environmental science and birds is clearly evident,” said Jim Curtis, board chair. “David made incredible strides during his time with us, and we have no doubt that Aaron will follow right in his footsteps. We look forward to continuing the success of SOS.”

Read more: Shore bird gets its name from UK town

In his new role, Virgin will be responsible for working with the SOS board of directors to create and fulfill the board’s strategic plan, establish appropriate goals for financial and operational performance, manage a high-performance team and control operational aspects of the organization, among other duties.

Virgin holds a master’s of professional studies in wildlife ecology and natural resources management from the College of Environmental Science and Forestry in Syracuse, New York, and a bachelor’s degree in environmental science from State University of New York at Plattsburgh. He enjoys backpacking, kayaking, birding and spending time outdoors.

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