FRANK Future is best known for his work in conservation, protection of whales, and the promotion of Port Stephens.
Frank arrived in Port Stephens expecting to take on the role of caretaker of the outer lighthouse.
Unfortunately during a managerial hiatus, the lighthouse was vandalised with fire destroying the historic lighthouse.
After the fire, Frank was standing in the ruins on Fingal Island contemplating his future when two whales breached.
At the time whale numbers were low and this was a rare and wonderful sighting.
Ultimately it was this sighting of the whales that lead Frank to build Imagine and become a force in international circles working to protect whales.
Frank, a shipwright, built Imagine in 1995 with the help of a group of stakeholders.
Frank Future told News Of The Area, “Imagine was one of the first businesses to offer whale watching in NSW.”
“It was in mid June 1996 when cruising on Imagine that Migaloo was sighted, and footage of the whale was shown on NBN.”
“It was a catalyst for people to start coming to the Bay for whale watching,” he said.
Frank has continued to be active in whale conservation, working with International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) and Greenpeace.
He has attended international Whaling Commission Meetings with the goal of making whale watching the only legitimate industry for whales.
Frank actively lobbied the Japanese commission to stop whaling in Australian waters.
The white whale that sits on Nelson Bay Road was a gift to Frank from Greenpeace.
Whale populations have dramatically increased since 1995 and it is people like Frank who have helped to restore their population.
By Marian SAMPSON