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Seafood Industry Research Fund 

A 501(c)3 organization established in 1964

Russ Mentzer
Dear Seafood Industry Professional,

Welcome to the Seafood Industry Research Fund (SIRF) newsletter! Here you can find quarterly updates on SIRF's activities, current research and funding information. Through your generous support, SIRF provides the seafood community with scientific studies that further business and improve the bottom line. Read in this newsletter how SIRF is linking industry and academia with articles on the Wally Stevens Future Leaders' Perpetual Fund, Annual SIRF Hockey Fundraiser and an award winning SIRF-sponsored Breast Cancer Research study.    


We could not fund exciting research without your support. Thank you for your continued contributions. To view past SIRF sponsored research, please visit  and contact us with any questions you may have



Russ Mentzer, Chairman

Seafood Industry Research Fund

Current Events
NFI Future Leaders Partner with SIRF Through the 
Wally Stevens Future Leaders' Perpetual Fund 

At the May SIRF board meeting, Board Member Daniel DiDonato gave Chairman Russ Mentzer a check for $4,000 to establish the Wally Stevens Future Leaders' Perpetual Fund. Honoring Wally Stevens as the founder of the National Fisheries Institute's (NFI) Future Leaders program, the fund will be filled through donations from the Future Leader Alumni on an on-going basis. 


Future Leader Alum Daniel DiDonato hands SIRF Chairman Russ Mentzer the first funds of the newly opened Wally Stevens Future Leaders' Perpetual Fund.


For 16 years, the Future Leader program has served as a networking and industry learning opportunity for up-and-coming seafood professionals. Each year, a new Future Leader class travels to important American seafood cities, expanding their business knowledge through plant tours, fishing vessels and expert lectures . The program boasts an impressive alumni list of over 400 seafood professionals. Wally Stevens of the Global Aquaculture Alliance first conceived of the Future Leaders program and helped to shape and guide its current model.


An active Future Leader alum, Daniel DiDonato supports the creation of the Wally Stevens Fund. "Wally has influenced the seafood industry in so many ways and the Future Leader program is certainly one of those influences that bears his stamp," said DiDonato. "The program takes young professionals at a formative point in their careers and introduces them to all facets of the seafood industry, a benefit designed by Wally and deserving of recognition."


Specifically appealing to the Future Leader alumni network, the Wally Stevens Future Leaders' Perpetual Fund seeks to educate the next-wave of seafood industry professionals about SIRF and the industry-relevant research it sponsors.


Chairman Russ Mentzer says the fund forges a crucial link between the future of the seafood business and seafood research.


"The NFI Future Leader program and SIRF share a common goal in improving the seafood business through exposure to new information," said Mentzer. "Future Leaders are expanding their knowledge of the seafood industry while SIRF is dedicated to expanding the industry's knowledge of seafood science. For the betterment of the seafood community, the Wally Stevens Future Leaders' Perpetual Fund marries these like-minded endeavors." 

Annual SIRF Hockey Fundraiser --
NFI Edges Out SEAFAX in a 7-6 Victory

SIRF hosted its annual hockey fundraiser at Harvard Ice Rink in Boston on March 17th. Coinciding with the Seafood Expo North America, the hockey fundraiser is an industry tradition that allows seafood professionals the chance to showcase their stick skills in a friendly competition benefiting seafood research. 



This year, both team NFI and Seafax were eager to resolve last year's 4-4 stalemante. With many of the participants having played at the collegiate level and still involved in the sport, the game's tempo was fast and loose from the outset. Dan Webb (Gorton's) opened things up with the first goal of the game for team NFI, closely followed two minutes later by teammate Kevin Daly (Preferred Freezer Services) putting the puck into the back of the net. 


Seafax Captain, Jim Bonnvie, evidently had words for his team as Seafax soon dug themselves out of their hole beginning when Ken Lundberg scored on a shot from the red line. 


Team Seafax continued to use their considerable size advantage to muscle the NFI players off the puck and create turnovers resulting in two more goals in 10 minutes, putting them ahead 3-2. NFI managed to tie the game seconds before the end of the first period with a goal by Steve Becker (Sysco). 


The high level of play continued into the second half with well-executed plays and exciting goals. Goalies Craig Pollard and Fred Torrisi for NFI and Seafax, respectively, each fended off barrages of shots-on-goal. NFI thought they had the game in hand with the score 6-5 and less than a minute to go, but Matt Muniz (Seafax) put an end to any premature celebration with a deft goal to tie things up and send the game into overtime. 


Overtime, however, was short-lived. NFI's Ryan Martin rocketed the game winning goal into the net within 35 seconds of the whistle blowing. 


Competitive, sportsmanlike play was seen by all at the SIRF Hockey Fundraiser and the event raised raised $25,000 for the Mike Voisin Fund, bringing the fund within $5,000 of its goal.


Player/Commentator Mike Gorton (Slade Gorton's) has a colorful write-up of the game found here


For game highlights watch the video below prepared by Diversified Business Communications:


SIRF Hockey 2014


SIRF Research on Breast Cancer Receives Award from Health/National Cancer Institute

SIRF sponsored a study of regular fish consumption in women at high risk of developing breast cancer.  The study took place under the direction of Dr. Lisa Yee at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center and found that eating fish represents an important strategy for increasing omega 3 fatty acids in the blood and those localized in breast tissue.  

Dr. Lisa Yee


Findings from the SIRF study contributed significantly to the ongoing program of Dr. Yee and her team which received a recent National Institute of Health/National Cancer Institute award in January 2014 for a clinical trial of omega 3's in women with hormone receptor negative breast cancer.  (Receptor negative breast cancers are more challenging as these are unresponsive to the more common treatment with hormonal therapies that are quite effective.)  


While this trial involves the use of capsule supplements, Dr. Yee envisions a future longer term study of omega 3 fatty acid intake of dietary fish for those at high risk.  The team is also planning to compare omega 3 fatty acids from fish versus capsules to identify the potential impact of increased fish consumption on inflammatory and other signaling pathways in cells that critically define the progression of mammary carcinogenesis.

Issue Date


June 2014

Quick Links
Ethel Feigon Memorial Fund
Ethel Feigon, the former President of Central Seaway Company (Censea), passed away on March 9th, 2013 in Sarasota, Florida. 
Her husband Gershon Feigon founded Censea in 1960. After Gershon's passing, Ethel Feigon ran the company well into her 80's increasing revenues tenfold. 
To donate click here.

Michael Voisin
Memorial Fund
In 2013, the SIRF Board of Directors established a fund commemorating the late Mike Voisin, owner of Motivatit Seafoods, Inc. 
Mike Voisin passed away in Houma, LA February 2, 2013 of complications arising from a heart attack.

Please consider supporting SIRF research through the Mike Voisin fund.

To donate click here.
More About Donations

SIRF's research and operating funds come entirely from generous donations made by individuals and corporations who support our mission of sponsoring scientific research of immediate and practical use by the seafood industry. Visit our website for details about open funds and information about making donations.  




About SIRF


The Seafood Industry Research Fund (SIRF) was established in 1964 and was originally named the Fisheries Scholarship Fund. It is a tax exempt, philanthropic, educational organization.  


SIRF is supported entirely by voluntary contributions from individuals and companies in and related to the seafood industry.


Click here to learn more about how the fund supports research of interest to the seafood industry.   


We appreciate the opportunity to share information about SIRF, our research funds and projects and thank you for your support!

SIRF Board of Directors

Quick Links

2014 February Newsletter
2013 September Newsletter
2013 June Newsletter
2013 April Newsletter