Don Denny - Water is in His Blood

Don Denny has always enjoyed rivers and the ocean and the opportunities for enjoyment they provide. As a water sample tester on the Narrow River in Rhode Island, he was inspired when a volunteer organization led a campaign to clean it up. “It took years, but you can now swim, fish, kayak and enjoy the clean water,” Don says. With his background as a chemistry teacher and his previous life experiences, he is a testament that volunteers can work wonders.

Don puts his skills to use as a Water Quality Tester for Florida Oceanographic Society, sampling and analyzing the water at the mouth of Frazier Creek in Shepard Park in Stuart. “It gives me an opportunity to get outdoors once a week and interact with others and nature” he says. He enjoys contributing to the mission of Florida Oceanographic Society and his effort shows, accumulating over 250 hours of volunteer time since joining in 2019.

Don served as a Naval officer for 22 years and then transitioned into his second career as a high school science and chemistry teacher for 17 years. When he retired in 2014, he and his wife found Stuart, Florida, fell in love with the town and discovered a condo community on a golf course. Living the retirement life, they now have more time to spend with their five children, eight grandchildren, and soon to be nine. Don also makes time for golfing, boating, and reading.



Born in: Dunn, North Carolina

College: Graduated UNC-Chapel Hill, with master’s degrees from the Naval War College and Salve Regina University

Favorite restaurant: Dune Dog – “Sea Dogs are the best.”


Recent books: The President's Daughter by James Patterson and Bill Clinton. Really anything by James Patterson and Michael Connelly.

Movies & TV recommendations: Top Gun, Maverick and CSI

Streaming series: Heartland, Yellowstone, Ozark, The Ranch and All Creatures Great and Small.

Don Denny
Volunteer Spotlight