TAMPA, Fla. (October 5, 2015) – There’s no place quite like it in the world” says Jon Yob, Founder and President of the Yob Family Foundation. Where is he talking about you might ask, the Galapagos? Or what about the Great Barrier Reef? No & no, he is talking about Madagascar, a place where more than 80% of the plants and animals on the island are found nowhere else in the world.
After Jon Yob’s visit to Madagascar he was inspired to create awareness and share its vast wonders back here in the Tampa Bay community. At the same time the Florida Aquarium was actively seeking a way to incorporate the diversity of Madagascar at the Aquarium. What better way to share the magic of Madagascar than to partner the Yob Family Foundation with the Florida Aquarium!
The Florida Aquarium plays home to more than 20,000 aquatic animals and plants. Many unique experiences and a plethora of highly respected learning opportunities for student and guests of all ages helped make the Aquarium the perfect organization for the Yob Family Foundation to team up with.
The Aquarium has benefited tremendously from the addition of the exhibit in 2014. With the help of the Madagascar exhibit and a tremendous reputation in the Tampa Bay community, the Aquarium is poised to have a record-breaking year in attendance. “More than 800,000 guests have walked through the doors this year and Journey to Madagascar has been a driving factor behind those numbers,” said Mark Haney, Vice President of Advancement at the Florida Aquarium. Mark also added “The Journey to Madagascar exhibit has become a favorite for our guests and members. We are grateful to the Yob Family Foundation for making it a reality.”
The exhibit offers a first-class educational experience for all visitors to learn more about the unique flora and fauna that inhabits Madagascar. Many colorful chameleons, bashful coconut crabs and beautiful coral reefs highlight the exhibits’ diversity and its main attraction, the ring-tailed lemurs. Overfishing in this region has created a shortage of available protein and as a result, the people are turning to lemurs for vital nutrients. It is rare that an Aquarium would feature primates, but by hosting the lemurs the global conservation message of the Florida Aquarium really hits home.
The generous donation from Jon Yob and the Yob Family foundation helped to establish this exhibit and make it one of the most interesting experiences at the Florida Aquarium. The Yob Family Foundation delights in knowing that the exhibit will continue to spread awareness and entertain the guests of the Florida Aquarium for years to come.
About The Author
An established presence in the Tampa business community, Jonathan “Jon” Yob leads several companies and investment entities. Passionate about giving back to the community, Jonathan Yob serves as the president of the Yob Family Foundation (YFF) and has supported Tampa organizations that range from child welfare providers to local zoos and aquariums. Mr. Yob has a longstanding commitment to efforts designed to bring awareness to and help to preserve the environment. Following a trip to Madagascar, his experience of coming into contact with unforgettable wildlife led to him to seek to replicate that experience in Florida. Since the Florida Aquarium was looking to add wildlife exhibits from around the world, Jon Yob & YFF partnered with the institution to create the new Journey to Madagascar exhibit. In addition to a large-scale coral reef aquarium, this groundbreaking exhibit offers visitors a glimpse of geckos, chameleons, ring-tailed lemurs, and hissing cockroaches.