Growing up on an island compelled me to become passionate about marine conservation. My background includes exploring the socioeconomics of coastal and island communities, better understanding the health and biogeography of coral reefs, and education and advocacy in marine conservation and science. I hold a Master’s Degree in Marine Affairs and Policy from the University of Miami’s Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science.
At GRID-Arendal, I work to advance the concept of blue carbon through national demonstrations and in international treaties. This includes the development and management of the Abu Dhabi Blue Carbon Demonstration Project and the Global Environment Facility’s Blue Forests Project, on behalf of UN Environment, and representation at international climate change negotiations. I am also involved in several other projects including helping to address plastic pollution on our coasts and in our oceans.
Prior to my engagement with GRID-Arendal, I focused on marine environmental policy analysis and advocacy in the USA. I have worked on legislation related to climate change and ocean acidification, the management of tropical and deep-sea corals, Hawaiian Monk Seal conservation, marine protected areas, addressing illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, and appropriations for NOAA and other federal agencies. Additionally, I have advanced blue carbon policy with the executive and legislative branches of the US government, the Global Environment Facility and in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
Furthermore, I serve as a policy advisor to The Ocean Foundation.