About Us

The Virginia Ecological Solutions Foundation is a group of skilled experts in the fields of marine life, education, engineering, management and communications united by a common goal – to help restore the Chesapeake Bay through the deployment of memorial oyster reefs. Through research, study, strategic programs and projects, the sharing of information, coalition building and partnerships, we have created a framework where change can occur.

As a 501(c)3 entity, this Foundation has tailored several offerings to meet not only the restoration needs of the Bay, but also some of the basic human needs of Society:

  • the desire to be useful in service to this world, the need to honor traditions
  • to commemorate events
  • to memorialize the passing of a loved one
  • the desire to protect, preserve and restore our aquatic surroundings in regions such as the Chesapeake Bay.

Our Programs and Projects include the following:

Our Programs

1) The Living Memorial Oyster Reefs (LMOR)

These diploid oyster reefs, placed in permitted, non-harvestable oyster sanctuaries are used for the commemoration, memorialization, recognition, and celebration of persons, families, groups, pets, places or events. These memorials are offered for a tax-deductible donation to the Foundation. Memorial services and receptions at the Foundation headquarters can be arranged through our onsite events coordination service for an additional charge.

For more details about LMOR, click here

2) “Adopt a Reef” Program

This tax deductable program presents an opportunity to name and dedicate an oyster reef in honor of a person, occasion, or event. These reefs will be strategically placed in areas critically endangered due to loss of habitat through erosion or sinking and already populated with the prolifically reproducing diploid Chesapeake bay oyster for restoration of the Bay’s population.

For more details about “Adopt a Reef”, click here

3) Living Docks Program

These non-harvestable mini-reefs are designed for restoration, resiliency building, stabilizing, and habitat enhancement around owners’ waterfront properties including individual docks, community piers or municipal wharfs and jetties. The under dock 3’x3′ 2-layer mini-reefs are also non-harvestable oyster reefs, based on a scaled down version of the larger LMOR.  They are pre-seeded with rapidly reproducing diploid oysters, and are solely dedicated to the perpetual replenishment of the bay’s oyster population for filtration and cleansing of the bay’s waters of toxins and excess nutrients contained in their planktonic food supply. These represent one of the best opportunities for community participation in the VESF.

For more information on our Living Docks Program, click here

4)  Community Shoreline Solutions Program

This represents an opportunity for businesses, communities, municipalities and other groups who own or manage large marinas, piers, jetties etc to partner with VESF in order to stabilize their shorelines through the deployment of Living Reefs.

 For more detailed information, click here

5) Education and Outreach

One our largest focus areas is in the area of Education and Outreach. The offerings range from classes, seminars, video and book discussions to Train the trainer programs and ecotourism. Science Dissemination/Education is always a high priority purpose of the VESF.

For more detailed information, click here

Our Projects

Currently, The Virginia Ecological Solutions Foundation is actively participation in three projects:

Our History

 The Virginia Ecological Solutions Foundation was created to help preserve the Chesapeake Bay through the research and commitment of Virginian’s William McConnell Benton and Robert Jennings. Learn more about each gentleman’s contributions by visiting their respective links.

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