Mullikin honored by Galapagos Islands leaders

July 9, 2024

By W. Thomas Smith Jr.

Global expedition leader Dr. Tom Mullikin was recognized by Luciana Bianchi and Pablo Majia of the Galapagos Foundation during ceremonies on San Cristobal Island, Galapagos, July 4, 2024.

The recognition, honoring Mullikin’s years of work in (and support of) the Galapagos Islands, included honorary membership in the Galapagos Foundation and an award which reads: “In merit of his valuable support to the Galapagos Foundation, a non-profit entity that focuses on educational projects empowering young people and women in the Galapagos Islands for their training in hospitality and restoration with an ethical-sustainable approach.”

Since early June, Mullikin has been traveling the length and breadth of Ecuador, climbing up-and-around Mount Chimborazo, the highest elevation on Earth, with a team of retired U.S. Army special forces operators and other mountaineering experts outfitted and led by his personally founded Global Eco Adventures (GEA).

Following the Chimborazo expedition, Mullikin and members of GEA, traveled to the Galapagos archipelago where Mullikin has been teaching and exploring for several weeks.

A university professor, attorney, former U.S. Army officer, and retired two-star commanding general of the S.C. State Guard, Mullikin today serves as chair of the gubernatorially established S.C. Floodwater Commission.

Beyond Chimborazo and the Galapagos, Mullikin’s expeditionary accomplishments to date are legion: Having logged SCUBA dives in every ocean on Earth and climbed mountains on every continent (including four of the seven great summits and surrounding ranges), Mullikin has also navigated isolated stretches of desert, rainforest, and arctic tundra often at the head of groups of retired and former U.S. military special operators.

“It’s all part of caring for the planet, our fragile environmental systems, our fellow man, and a lifelong passion of mine which was ignited within me as a boy,” said Mullikin, hours after being recognized by the Galapagos. “I simply love people and I love the natural world around me.”

For the past several years, Mullikin has led the annual SOUTH CAROLINA SEVEN (SC7) expedition across the Palmetto State. Throughout SC7, participants – including everyone from the Governor to the Lt. Governor, the president of the S.C. Senate, Supreme Court justices, and military and business leaders – hike, climb, explore, and in some instances whitewater raft, kayak, and SCUBA dive on a pre-planned trek roughly paralleling the Palmetto Trail which stretches approximately 300 miles from the mountains to the sea.

Mullikin returned to his home in Camden, S.C., Saturday, July 6.