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Senator Bob Graham to be Awarded the Seaside Prize February 2

November 14, 2012 by SoWal Staff

The Seaside Institute will award this year’s Seaside Prize to Senator Bob Graham. The Seaside Prize is awarded annually to individuals or organizations that have made significant contributions to the quality and character of our communities.

The ceremony will take place as part of the Seaside Prize weekend events, which will be held on the first weekend in February in Seaside, Florida.

Senator Bob Graham is the former two–term governor of Florida and served for 18 years in the United States Senate. This is combined with 12 years in the Florida legislature, for a total of 38 years of public service. Bob Graham retired from public service in January 2005, following his Presidential campaign in 2004.

Largely due to the efforts by Senator Graham, Florida became a beacon for managing growth thoughtfully. The 1985 Growth Management Act helped slow over development of Florida's most critical environmental resources, and forced local governments to think about how growth and infrastructure needed to be planned together. Due to its success, the act became a model for other states.

As Senator, Graham was the earliest proponent of an airport for northwest Florida, a project that many thought could help the area’s economy grow beyond tourism, fishing and pulpwood.

Bob Graham is recognized for his leadership on issues ranging from education, economic development, healthcare, environmental preservation, and his service on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence — including 18 months as chairman in 2001–2002.

After retiring from public life, Senator Graham served for a year as a senior fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.

In May of 2010, Senator Graham was appointed by the President to serve as Co-Chair of the National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling. This followed his service as a Commissioner on the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission, and as the Chairman of the Commission on the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism. Currently he serves as chairman of the WMD Center, a 501c3 not for profit research organization which continues the work of the Commission.

Senator Graham also serves as a member of the CIA External Advisory Board, and as the Chair of the Board of Overseers of the Bob Graham Center for Public Service at the University Florida. In addition, he's a member of the board of directors of several companies. 

Senator Graham is also the author of several books including “America: The Owner’s Manual,” which teaches the skills of civic participation, and “Keys to the Kingdom,” a novel of suspense, which draws upon his background in government and intelligence.

Previous recipients of the Seaside Prize include the six founders of the Congress for the New Urbanism, architects Peter Calthorpe, Elizabeth Moule, Stephanos Polyzoides, Daniel Solomon, Andrés Duany and Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk; historian and scholar Vincent Scully; architects Christopher Alexander, Leon Krier, Robert A.M. Stern, Alex Cooper, Jaquelin Robertson, Donlyn Lyndon, Aldo Rossi, Giancarlo DeCarlo; writer and civic activist Jane Jacobs; Mayor of Charleston Joseph P. Riley, Jr.; Seaside town founders Daryl and Robert Davis; authors Witold Rybczynski and James Howard Kunstler; urban designer Allan B. Jacobs; Hank Dittmar, urban designer and chief executive of The Prince’s Foundation for the Built Environment; Dhiru Thadani, urbanist, architect and author, and architect and planner Scott Merrill.

The recipients of the Prize have had a major influence on how our towns and cities can best be built and rebuilt to reflect and promote diversity, walkability, beauty, and sustainability. Seaside Prize recipients are considered the leaders of contemporary urban development and education.

For more background information about Senator Graham, visit HERE.

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