Marine biologist Eugenie Clark immortalized on a stamp
SARASOTA, Florida — Eugenie Clark, a pioneering marine biologist who has spent her career working tirelessly to change public perception of sharks and preserve marine environments around the world, was immortalized on a Forever stamp today.
The dedication took place at the Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium, which Clark helped found as the Cape Haze Marine Laboratory in 1955.
“One of the purposes of the Postal Service’s stamp program is to celebrate the people who represent the best of our nation, and Eugenie Clark – I should say Dr. Clark or the ‘Shark Lady’ – certainly deserves that recognition,” said said Angela H. Curtis, vice president of Postal Service delivery operations and a dedicated public servant. “She was a brilliant scientist whose groundbreaking work contributed to our understanding of sharks and marine environments.”
A prolific scientist with an unwavering curiosity, Clark (1922-2015) conducted groundbreaking experiments and more than 200 expeditions around the world. She demonstrated that lemon sharks could be trained to perform complex tasks, refuted the idea that some species of sharks must keep swimming to survive, and debunked myths about sharks as vicious and fearsome creatures.
Clark was a pioneer when scuba diving emerged as a research tool and later made more than 70 trips in high-tech submersibles, sometimes up to 12,000 feet below the surface of the ocean. ocean – something that has only been done so far by a small number of other marine biologists.
“Our family is thrilled to see Dr. Clark, or as we call her, Grandma Genie, recognized and honored on a stamp. Her work as an ichthyologist was groundbreaking in proving that sharks are intelligent, and she was a trailblazer for female scientists, researchers and divers. We are so proud of her legacy as an Asian-American woman, teacher, scientist – and most importantly – grandmother,” said Aya Konstantinou, Clark’s daughter.
For her contributions to marine science, she has received the National Geographic Society’s Franklin L. Burr Award, the Explorers’ Club Medal, and the American Society of Oceanographers’ Medal of Excellence, among many other honors. In 2015, she was posthumously honored by the US Congress. In 2018, a species of dogfish shark recently discovered in the Gulf of Mexico was named Squalus clarkae in his honour.
Stamp Art features a digital collage created by multidisciplinary artist Amanda Phingbodhipakkiya. Its design includes a photograph of Clark taken by David Doubilet, as well as a photograph of a lemon shark taken by Reinhard Dirscherl. Wavy blue elements in the background of the stamp evoke an underwater scene.
The Eugenie Clark Forever stamp is sold in sheets of 20 stamps. Eugenie Clark stamps news is shared with the hashtag #EugenieClarkStamp.