Stuart Hale brought a Westerner's love of nature and open space to Rhode Island nearly 40 years ago and found in Narragansett Bay and the ocean shores of his adopted slate a perfect substitute for the prairies. deserts. and mountains of the West. He was born in Loveland, Colorado, in 1917. After receiving a degree in history from Colorado College and a master s degree from the Columbia School of Journalism, he joined the staff of the Providence Journal-Bulletin. For nearly a quarter of a century he worked as a reporter, feature writer, city editor, Washington correspondent, and natural resource and environmental writer. He won a number of honors for his environmental writing, including the first national Edward L. Meaman Award from the Scripps-Howard newpaper chain.
In 1966, he embarked on a new career as assistant to Dr. John A. Knauss, Dean Of the Graduate School of Oceanography at The University of Rhode Island. Drawing on his knowledge of regional natural resource problems and his experience with state and federal agencies, he helped to build the University's marine programs to national prominence. He assisted in the establishment of the National Sea Grant College Program and worked to prepare the state or early participation in the federal Coastal Zone Management Program through formation of the University's Coastal Resources Center, which provides much of the research support for the state's coastal authorities.
Throughout his years in Rhode Island, except for a brief woodland interlude, he lived at the ocean's edge. His winters were spent in travel in the West and abroad. Until his death in March of 1986, he resided in the summer months near a marsh-fringed cove in North Kingstown, where he continued to keep an eye on Rhode Island's most important natural resource.