Thank You, Volunteers! – Our Founders

Betsy Hornor
Betsy Hornor

In honor of National Volunteer Week, we’d like to take a moment to thank, honor, and remember our original volunteers – our founders.

The National Marine Life Center was founded in 1995 by a group of Cape Codders concerned about the significant number of stranded animals in and around Cape Cod, and the absence of facilities to treat them.  These dedicated individuals dreamed of building a state-of-the-art hospital in which to treat stranded animals.  They further realized the importance of learning from the animals through scientific study and teaching others what we learn through education programs.  Together, these initiatives of marine wildlife rehabilitation, science, and education would inspire conservation.

We’d like to especially thank and acknowledge Elizabeth “Betsy” Hornor, founding chair, for her vision, her love of animals, and her tireless efforts to build the foundation on which NMLC has grown.

Townsend Hornor
Townsend Hornor

We’d also like to thank and acknowledge Townsend “Townie” Hornor, who took up the reins after Betsy passed away.  Under Townie’s leadership, NMLC secured the seed grant from NOAA for a marine animal hospital, expanded our donor base, built an interim rehabilitation facility, and admitted “Eco”, our first patient.  It is thanks to a bequest from Townie that we have been able to build our new marine animal hospital.

Thank you, NMLC Founders, for your dedication to rehabilitating for release stranded sea turtles, seals, dolphins, porpoises, and small whales, and to advancing scientific knowledge and education about marine wildlife health and conservation.  Your vision inspires us and we are working hard to make your dreams a reality.
~ Joseph P. Carlson
~ Joseph R. Geraci, VMD, PhD
~ Betsy Hornor†
~ Townsend Hornor†
~ Sallie K. Riggs
~ Michael B. Stusse
~ Brad Towle†
~ Patsy Towle

† = deceased