The Dive and Watch History Book will now pass the many hands of all those living pioneers of sport diving that are featured and after some of the most famous signatures are collected, Blancpain's History Book will be auctioned off to assist the Academy of Underwater Arts & Sciences in their task to preserve the diving pioneer’s heritage.
The AUAS is an international, multi-disciplinary, non-profit organization dedicated to recognizing pioneers and leaders who have had a global impact on the exploration, enjoyment, safety, and preservation of the underwater world. AUAS is committed to supporting its members as they pass on the stewardship of the sea to future generations.The awards were given in four categories until 2013 when a fifth category for the environment was added:
ARTS: Filmmakers, painters, photographers, sculptors and other artists who bring the majesty of the underwater world to people everywhere.
DISTINGUISHED SERVICE: World-renowned as well as quiet achievers whose contributions keep the wheels of the diving industry and the global diving community turning.
ENVIRONMENT: Scientists, lobbyists, fundraisers, advocates and more who dedicate(d) their lives to the preservation of the health of our oceans and the life within.SCIENCE: Explorers, inventors, doctors and scientists whose work helps us understand, enjoy and protect our precious underwater realm.
SPORTS/EDUCATION: Outstanding athletes who have personally pushed the physical boundaries of our sport. Educators who devote themselves to teaching us how to make diving safe and enjoyable or who teach us about the oceans and the life within.
Thus the NOGI award—NOGI stands for New Orleans Grand Isle and the statuette given to each recipient was originally a trophy designed for the second annual New Orleans Grand Isle Scuba Divers International Tournament—incorporates the most important features of the Blancpain Ocean Commitment: art, environment, education and science and its only that the Blancpain Ocean Commitment partners with the Academy of Underwater Arts & Sciences and both partners hope to enlarge this partnership in the coming years.
Also at DEMA, the largest dive trade show in the world, Maurine Shimlock, member of the women’s divers hall of fame, photographer of Blancpain’s edition Fifty Fathoms and contributor to the The Dive and Watch History Book received a Blancpain Bathyscaph for her ongoing work for the Ocean Commitment especially as Ambassador for the Ecotourism Region in Raja Amat Indonesia. Please check www.birdsheadseascape.com