As a product of the “Land of 10,000 Lakes”, I grew up surrounded by the deep blue waters of Minnesota, spending many summer days cooling off in the refreshing waters. I also grew up in the enchanting waters of northern Michigan. The clear, Caribbean-blue waters astounded me from an early age. I was amazed that the color could vary from navy to jet black in Minnesota, but then take on a brilliant turquoise hue in Michigan.
While pursuing degrees in Environmental Studies and Latin American Studies at Connecticut College, I became increasingly aware of the issues facing our waters today, not only those affecting lakes, but also expanding to the oceans. The more I learned, the more fascinated I became with the diversity of species and terrain far below the surface that I was unable to easily observe firsthand. However, this greater knowledge also led me to see how much of our underwater beauty and resources we are quickly losing.
I am dedicated to ocean conservation, because whales and sharks shouldn’t have to succumb to extinction, because well-managed fisheries can help feed billions of people and because, most importantly, we are fundamentally connected to our oceans. There is so much that we have to learn from them – so many species that have yet to be discovered. Working at Oceana has shown me that we have the power to change our existing practices for the benefit of the oceans and the entire world. I feel extremely privileged to be working alongside such dedicated colleagues who are continuously helping us win policy victories locally and globally.