The Seattle Propeller Club announced the winner of the 2022 Puget Sound Maritime Achievement Award as Debbie Granger for her many contributions to Puget Sound’s maritime community.
Ms. Granger is a long-time member of the Working Waterfront Coalition of Whatcom County with highly visible contributions throughout the community. Jim Kyle, President of the Coalition, commented “Debbie’s work has been essential to the success of our organization. Her knowledge and work ethic set a very high bar.” Her many accomplishments include establishing Bellingham SeaFeast as a signature waterfront and seafood festival celebrating Whatcom County’s maritime culture, helping launch Bellingham Dockside Market as a hub for local fishermen to provide direct seafood sales out of Squalicum Harbor, and extensive fundraising efforts to support a new Fisheries and Aquaculture Center for Bellingham Technical College.
“On behalf of the Port of Bellingham, I’d like to congratulate Debbie Granger on winning the 2022 Puget Sound Maritime Achievement Award” said Port Executive Director Rob Fix. “Debbie is a tremendous advocate for Whatcom County’s working waterfront and her passion and energy for marine trades is second to none. Debbie has made numerous and meaningful contributions to our marine trades community and the Puget Sound Maritime Achievement Award is well deserved.”
Ms. Granger has worked in education, fish processing, public relations, marketing, fund raising and event management. Her last full-time job was with the University of Washington, where she managed a 12-state aquaculture research consortium. After “retiring”, Debbie and her husband Pete, a commercial fisherman, returned to Whatcom County where they continue to fish with salmon reefnet gear off Lummi Island.
Debbie continues to work tirelessly for the Puget Sound maritime community. She is currently working to establish a Northwest Maritime Apprenticeship Program to help meet the shortage of qualified employees in the marine trades industry. Over 6,000 jobs are created or supported by marine trades representing seven percent of the total workforce in Whatcom County.
Debbie is one of only three women to have won the Puget Sound Maritime Achievement Award since its inception in 1951. On Thursday, Debbie will be encouraging women to consider marine trades as a viable career path at the Port’s Marine Trades Jobs and Internship Fair from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Fishermen’s Pavilion in Bellingham. Ms. Granger will be available for questions at a table staffed by the Working Waterfront Coalition of Whatcom County.