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The John K. Bullard Diversity Award

As CEO of Sea Education Association (SEA), John Bullard was a driving force in the formation of the WHDI. He worked to bring the Woods Hole institutions together to address the issue of diversity, and he articulated the vision in the 2004 Memorandum of Understanding that established the Diversity Initiative. Before and after the signing of the 2004 MOU, John relentlessly encouraged his fellow CEO’s to devote time, energy and resources to making the community more diverse.

The John K. Bullard Award is given every 2 years to recognize leadership in, and commitment to, making the Woods Hole scientific community more welcoming and inclusive.

New Bedford’s John Bullard honored in Woods Hole



Lionel Hall

Formerly at MBL

2014 Winner

Excerpt from press release:

"Hall, purchasing supervisor at the Marine Biological Laboratory, was recognized for his efforts at the MBL, in the village of Woods Hole, and in Falmouth over the past 30 years to make Woods Hole a welcoming and inclusive community.  Hall began working in the Woods Hole science community in 1985, initially in the warehouse at the US Geological Survey. In 1986 he moved to the MBL as a shipping and receiving clerk. He was promoted to Purchasing Supervisor in 1998, and in 2004 assumed responsibility for the MBL Chemical Stockroom.

Hall joined the Woods Hole Black History Month Organizing Committee in the 1990s and has been chair of that committee since 1999.  Since 1979, the committee has brought more than 100 individuals from a variety of fields to the village as speakers on an array of topics, and also organizes social events, including the annual harambee or ethnic feast."


Ben Gutierrez


2016 Winner


Excerpt from press release:

"The John K. Bullard Diversity Award was presented to Gutierrez by Walter Barnhardt, chief scientist of the USGS Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center and a member of the Woods Hole Diversity Initiative, during Juneteenth celebration events at the MBL. A lecture on Ernest Everett Just, the first African American marine biologist who spent summers at the MBL in Woods Hole for many years in the early 20th century, was given by Biochemist W. Malcolm Byrnes of Howard University in Washington, DC, following the Bullard Diversity Award presentation.

Gutierrez is a geologist at the USGS’s Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center. He came to Woods Hole in 1995 after receiving his B.S. degree in environmental geology from the College of William and Mary. He started as a graduate research assistant in the Department of Geology and Geophysics at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), working with Dr. David Aubrey. Gutierrez then entered the Massachusetts Institute of Technology/Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Joint Program in Oceanography, receiving a M.S. degree in oceanography in 1999.  He soon began his affiliation with USGS, serving as a research intern, before enrolling at the University of South Carolina, where he was awarded a Ph.D. in 2006 under the guidance of Dr. George Voulgaris for research on nearshore circulation sediment transport patterns offshore of Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina."


Scott Branco

Formerly at SEA

2018 co-winner

Excerpt from press release:

"Scott Branco was a senior administrator at the Sea Education Association (SEA) for more than a dozen years, and has been a behind-the-scenes leader in the Woods Hole diversity effort since the inception of the Woods Hole Diversity Initiative and PEP. He will be honored for his support in managing the finances of PEP, the Diversity Initiative and Diversity Advisory Committee, and his commitment to make SEA and the Woods Hole community more diverse and inclusive."


Onjalé Scott Price

Mizar Imaging &  Former PEP Coordinator (2011-2015)

2018 co-winner

Excerpt from press release:

"Onjalé Scott will be honored for her many contributions to the Woods Hole Partnership Education Program (PEP) and her professional and personal dedication to Woods Hole diversity and inclusion efforts over more than six years."


Larry Alade


2020 Winner

Excerpt from press release:

"The Woods Hole Diversity Initiative noted Alade’s “ability to maintain a successful career as a research scientist and to serve on multiple professional advisory committees, while simultaneously taking a leadership role in education and outreach activities, with special emphasis on promoting diversity and inclusion in science."

His notable efforts include service nationally as president of the American Fisheries Society Executive Committee for Equal Opportunities, and as chair of the AFS Symposium “Demographic Diversity in Fisheries and Natural Resource Professions.”

In a letter of congratulations on receiving the award, center deputy director Nicole Cabana noted that Alade is “a proven, effective leader who brings his own perspective to issues and who nonetheless is always ready to listen to the ideas and opinions of others… able to handle and to diffuse potential difficulties by bringing a calm, measured, unflappable approach to all challenges.”

Kwanza Johnson

Kwanza Johnson


2022 Winner

Kwanza Johnson received the Bullard Award on June 17, 2022 as part of the annual Juneteenth Lecture in Woods Hole. She was recognized for her major role in our village-wide effort to build a better community.

A Cleveland, Ohio native, Kwanza came to Woods Hole as a PEP student in 2016. She stayed in touch after her PEP year, and in 2018 she joined the NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center Academic Program Office.  She was a PEP administrator, helping to build the program through her work with the selection committee, in-person recruitment, student mentoring, and dorm resident advisor. She is one of a trio of people who developed the INFISH program, a PEP-inspired intern program for NOAA Fisheries that has grown from a handful of applicants in 2019 to nearly 500 in our most recent recruitment period. She also took leadership roles in the Woods Hole Diversity Advisory Committee, planning the annual Jearld Lecture and Juneteenth observance, and serving on the Northeast Fisheries Science Center’s diversity and Inclusion team.

During her time with us, Kwanza walked a difficult line in that she recognized exclusion and racism wherever it appeared and yet was willing and able to work with everyone, including those who might not have shared her vision of what constitutes exclusion. She understood the communities we seek to engage and include, and the impact our usual practices have on those who have not historically been part of our community. She is greatly admired for her ability to shine a light on problems and to work for solutions with enthusiasm and optimism.