SeaLife Center director quits

Posted: Friday, October 06, 2000

SEWARD (AP) -- The executive director of the Alaska SeaLife Center has stepped down. Mark Lloyd is the second director to leave since the struggling research center opened in May 1998.

''He's decided not to renew his contract,'' said Willard Dunham, secretary of board for the $56 million center. Lloyd told the board he was leaving at a Monday board meeting in Anchorage, Dunham said. The resignation was effective immediately.

Dunham did not attend the board meeting and said he didn't know why Lloyd quit. Lloyd did not return calls from the Seward Phoenix Log this week.

The board is trying to work a deal for a local person to take over the job, Dunham said. The board is holding a special meeting in Girdwood this weekend to discuss the issue with employees.

Professional facilitators Fred Burrow and Lisa O'Brien have been hired by the center to assist in establishing a strategic plan for the debt-heavy research center during the weekend meeting.

''The master plan we established three years ago is way out-of-date,'' said Dunham. ''We also have major construction things going on this winter. The bird tank is leaking badly, creating all sorts of problems underneath. Winter is the only time to do (repairs).''

Lloyd left a job as veterinarian and zoologist at the El Paso Zoo in Texas last October to fill the position at the SeaLife Center left vacant when Kim Sundberg left.

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