Lauren DeLuca

Former Manager of Marine Operations

How long have you worked for/with the Port? I have worked with the port for over 8 years.

What are your main responsibilities? I oversee our Marine Operations department, which encompasses all of the boating and diving operations at the Aquarium. This includes guest experiences such as our Wild Dolphin Cruise, Dive with the Sharks and Swim with the Fishes.

What do you love most about your job? I love that I have a job with the unique opportunity to connect our guests to our mission of entertaining, educating and inspiring stewardship about our natural environment, through interactive and immersive experiences, both on and in the water. Through these experiences guests can build an emotional connection to animals and parts of the environment that they may have never experienced before. It is amazing when you can instill even just a sliver of the same passion that drives all of us to come to work every day into our guests, and make them want to do their part to help us protect and save this planet.

What advice would you give to the younger generation? Follow your instincts. Take risks. Travel and be adventurous. Have a strong work ethic. Get involved in anything and everything you can, because that’s the only way you will figure out your true passions in life. Follow your dreams, even if they seem crazy..

When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up? I wanted to work with dolphins. I have always loved dolphins and the water, and I always knew I wanted to end up in Florida in the marine environment. Today, I have the unique pleasure of seeing these incredible animals in their natural habitat and sharing these experiences with guests at The Florida Aquarium, plus so many more!

When you are not at work, what do you enjoy doing? I play the flute and piccolo. Music has always been my passion – I was even a music major for my first two years of college. I play in several local ensembles around the Tampa Bay area.