Michael Moore

Maritime Attorney, Chairman of the International Seakeepers

November 2018

Michael Moore was an early member of the International SeaKeepers Society, today based in Coral Gables. The society, founded with donations from Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen and Palm Beach philanthropist Alex Dreyfoos, was intended to advance marine science with the help of yacht owners. The yachts of members are used for maritime research, educational programs, and to deploy oceanographic instruments. By using yachts to transport scientists, research institutes and/or universities can save 90 percent of the cost to field an expedition. Among recent missions: research on reducing global overfishing, restoring dying coral reefs, tracking shark migration, and genetic sequencing sea slugs to understand brain tissue regeneration.  


Michael Moore was named chairman of the International SeaKeepers organization 10 years ago this month. Since becoming chairman, membership has risen from 400 to 12,000. It has also changed from carrying data collectors on member vessels to carrying scientists. 


“Seakeepers is comprised of many wonderful people who want to do good things with their wealth and their yachts,” he says. “And the model is simple. We want to capture the 10,000 yachts in the world that can be used as floating [research] platforms.” Moore believes that most ultra-wealthy yacht owners are deeply concerned with the wellbeing of the global marine environment, and happy to help. “The Seakeepers are not scientists, the yacht owners are not scientists. That’s not what we do. We support any scientist who comes to us in need of support… We give them a ride.” Moore also believes in following the “open architecture” philosophy of early donor Allen. “If you develop something for science you should share that, you shouldn’t bogart that information,” he says. “Our boats are free [for the scientists]. It’s open architecture with wealthy people using their yachts for the good of humanity.”