Muir Steps Down as Salish Sea Expeditions Director

January 7, 2019

Salish Sea Expeditions Press Release


January 8, 2019 — BAINBRIDGE ISLAND, WA — Salish Sea Expeditions announced today that Seth Muir, its Executive Director for the last seven years, will be leaving the organization effective January 16 to take the helm as Executive Director with Sail Sand Point.

The nonprofit’s Board has appointed Matt Eldridge as Interim Executive Director while it conducts a national search for a new Executive Director. Previously, Eldridge served on Salish Sea Expeditions’ Board and separately as its Interim Executive Director. He chaired the search committee that hired Muir in early 2012.

At Sail Sand Point’s Magnuson Park office in Seattle, Muir will lead expansion its programs which are designed to bring the joy and life-enhancing benefits of sailing and small boats to people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds.

“Seth has been a great advocate for supporting science education and the health of Puget Sound, a great representative of Salish Sea Expeditions, and a great leader who has built and strengthened the organization,” said Trina Wellman, Salish Sea Expeditions’ Board President.

“I love the work that Salish Sea Expeditions does, and there has never been a more important time for organizations like it to inspire middle school and high school students with confidence, critical thinking and scientific curiosity,” said Muir. “It is well-positioned for growth.”

“While we will miss Seth, we are pleased that someone from Salish Sea Expeditions will be helping a fellow Northwest maritime organization to further its mission,” Wellman continued. “We are excited to have Matt manage the team while helping to recruit our next Executive Director.”

Eldridge has held multiple interim leadership roles in the greater Seattle area over the past eight years as Interim Executive Director at the Kirkland-based Wave Aquatics, as Interim Executive Director at Bainbridge Island’s Helpline House, and in two transitional Senior Vice President roles at IslandWood. He is also a co-founder of the impact investing network Eldridge holds a BA from Stanford, a MA from the University of Cape Town, and a MBA from Yale. A graduate of Gig Harbor High School, he grew up sailing on the waters of Puget Sound.

Under Muir’s leadership since 2012, Salish Sea Expeditions has increased program offerings to expand participation and solidified significant funding relationships with area foundations and federal and state agencies, including being among the first organizations to be awarded the No Child Left Inside grant from Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office. Additionally, during Muir’s tenure, Salish Sea Expeditions acquired the 85-foot ship M/V Elettra III and received a Jones Act Waiver from the US Congress. Seth has been a great advocate for supporting science education and the health of Puget Sound, and an accomplished leader who has built and strengthened the organization.

The organization is conducting a national search for its next Executive Director. Details will be available on its website at

About Salish Sea Expeditions

Salish Sea Expeditions, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, was founded in 1996 to inspire youth to connect with the marine environment through boat-based scientific inquiry and hands-on learning, instilling curiosity, confidence, and critical thinking on the waters of the Salish Sea. Since then, more than 17,000 students (grades 5-12) and 1,200 teachers have participated in its innovative multi-day programs. Public school students make up 75% of the organization’s program participants and more than 25% are from schools serving lower-income populations. Teachers report that Salish Sea Expeditions’ programs provide important support to their classroom efforts to meet state learning requirements.


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