George B. Kelez
NOAA Ship George B. Kelez was built in Decatur, Alabama and last homeported in Norfolk, Virginia. Commissioned in March 1973, the ship’s main operation included supporting the Marine Ecosystems Analysis (MESA) New York Bight Project—a project undertaken by NOAA's MESA program that analyzed the overall scientific processes of the bight.
George B. Kelez was originally built as a U.S. Army Coastal Freighter before it was transferred to the U.S. Coast Guard during World War II. During the war, the ship operated in the Central Pacific. Eventually, NOAA acquired the ship in 1962 as a fisheries research ship. The ship was then decommissioned in January 1980.
The ship is named after George Bothwell Kelez—a fisheries researcher. He is known for his contributions as a chief biologist in fisheries in Alaska.