Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium began as a one-room building on Florida's west coast in 1955. We were founded on three basic principles: passion, partnership and philanthropy. We had the passion of a young woman—Dr. Eugenie Clark—for her science. We had the philanthropy of Anne and William Vanderbilt, who built the one-room lab where Mote started and, later, the philanthropy of William R. Mote who helped us grow and is today the Lab's namesake. And of course, we have always partnered with our local community—a partnership that has supported us throughout our history. 

Today, Mote can no longer be contained by one small room. Nearly 300 staff members—including more than 40 Ph.D. scientists—call the Lab home. From our Sarasota base of operations, we have conducted research on the oceans surrounding each of Earth's seven continents. Our education programs engage students in science and learning locally, nationally and internationally. We are continuously helping to create a more ocean literate society. 

Our vision, like our oceans, is expansive. 

It has to be. 

The challenges facing our oceans today are great. To meet and conquer them, we must do equally great things.

Beyond 2020 Vision and Strategic Plan

Our Vision

As a foundation for Mote Marine Laboratory’s growth and prosperity, enhanced quality of programs and profound respect for the marine environment, this Strategic Plan is built upon attaining the following vision Beyond 2020: Mote Marine Laboratory will excel as a leader in nationally and internationally respected research programs that are relevant to conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity, healthy habitats and natural resources. Mote research programs will positively impact a diversity of public policy challenges through strong linkages to outreach and education

Our Mission

The advancement of marine and environmental sciences leading to new discoveries, revitalization, sustainability and greater public understanding of our oceans through innovative research, education and outreach.