Activist Susan Rockefeller joins Oceana Board of Directors - Oceana USA

Activist Susan Rockefeller joins Oceana Board of Directors

Documentary filmmaker joins Ted Danson, Sam Waterston and others

Press Release Date: January 25, 2011

Location: Washington, D.C.


Dustin Cranor, APR | email: | tel: 954.348.1314


Oceana announced today that Susan Rockefeller, a respected documentary filmmaker, author and environmentalist, has joined its Board of Directors.

Rockefeller is a member of the Oceana Ocean Council, serving as its chair since February of 2009, and she also serves as the co-host of two major events which benefit Oceana. In the spring, Susan and her husband David Rockefeller are the co-hosts for the second annual Christie’s Green Auction: A Bid to Save the Earth, which will be held on March 29 in New York. The auction benefits Oceana as well as the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), Conservation International, the Central Park Conservancy and Runway to Green. Rockefeller is also the co-host, along with Ocean Council member Lois Robbins, of the Hamptons Splash Party which will be held this summer on Long Island.

“I have always had a connection with the ocean,” said Rockefeller. “I’m joining Oceana’s Board of Directors because I am passionate about the need to protect our oceans.”

Her environmentally- and socially-focused films have won many top film festival prizes. Rockefeller’s recent films include “Making the Crooked Straight” (HBO), which chronicles one doctor’s journey to save the world by saving one child at a time, and “Striking a Chord,” which focuses on how music can help heal soldiers with PTSD. Her passion for ocean conservation manifested itself as a co-producer in the 2009 film “A Sea Change,” which documents a retired teacher’s quest to better understand the huge changes CO2 is causing in our oceans.

“When watching ‘A Sea Change’ you can feel Susan’s passion and see her talent,” said Oceana board member and actor Sam Waterston. “She tells a remarkable story while bringing the devastating and largely unknown problem of ocean acidification to the forefront. Sue is a true ocean hero.”

Rockefeller’s conservation work includes holding seats on the Program Committee of The Stone Barns for Sustainable Agriculture, the Global Leadership Council for NRDC and the Audubon’s Council on Women in Conservation. As an author, Rockefeller has written several career-oriented books, including Green at Work:  Finding a Business Career That Works for the Environment and Finding Your Way With An MBA: Insights From Those Landing Their Ideal Jobs.

“Susan provides Oceana with a unique set of talents and point of view as a filmmaker and sailor,” said Board Chairman Dr. Kristin Parker. “Her decades of experience in every aspect of environmental work will be a terrific asset for us.”

Oceana’s Board of Directors is the organization’s governing body. It approves all strategy, budgets and direction for the group’s campaigns and organizational activities. The Board includes actors Ted Danson and Sam Waterston, former Organization of American States Secretary General César Gaviria and globally respected fisheries scientist Dr. Daniel Pauly.

Since its founding in 2001, Oceana has achieved dozens of concrete policy victories for marine life and habitats, including stopping bottom trawling in sensitive habitat areas, saving sea turtles from commercial fishing gear and protecting the Arctic from industrial fishing. Because of Oceana’s effectiveness, rating agency Charity Navigator has awarded the group four stars (the highest possible rating in its category).

“I’ve had the great pleasure to work with Susan on the Ocean Council for several years and it is an even greater pleasure to have her now on our Board,” said Andrew Sharpless, Oceana’s Chief Executive Officer. “I look forward to working with her in her new capacity as board member as we continue to protect, preserve and restore the health of our oceans.”

Other members of Oceana’s Board of Directors include James Sandler (Vice-chair), Valarie Whiting (Treasurer), Simon Sidamon-Eristoff (Secretary), Keith Addis (President), Herbert M. Bedolfe, III, María Eugenia Girón, Stephen P. McAllister, Michael Northrop and Heather Stevens. A full description of Board of Directors and their affiliations can be found at:

For more information about Susan Rockefeller, go to,