Ruth Petzold , 2016
Photographer, Conservationist, Public Speaker -- Ruth Petzold is a long-time scuba diver and professional underwater photographer. She played a major role in the research of Dr. Eugenie Clarke, traveling with her on over 50 expeditions and serving as her research photographer. A member of the Explorers club, she has been recognized as a Champion of the Sea due to her philanthropic work in seeking to promote the welfare of the seas and the protection of the marine environment through her generous donations. Her philanthropic actions have reached a number of marine-oriented organizations including SHARK SAVERS. She attended the University of Michigan Hospital and Rockefeller University to do Immunology Research. She turned to full time underwater photography and dive travel in 1985 and has made diving her life ever since. In addition to her skills as a scuba diver, Ruth is an airplane pilot.