Andrew Sharpless has led Oceana since 2003 as its Chief Executive Officer. Oceana, founded in late 2001, has grown in that time to be the largest international conservation organization fully dedicated to protecting the oceans.
Under his leadership, Oceana and its allies have protected more than 4.5 million square miles of habitat and won more than 200 significant policy victories that will protect and restore the world’s oceans. Oceana campaigns have banned bottom trawling and offshore oil exploration in Belize, helping to protect the world’s second-largest barrier reef system. Other victories have preserved unique habitats in Chile, made the seafood trade more transparent, and helped combat illegal fishing around the globe.
With campaigns underway in Belize, Brazil, Canada, Chile, the European Union, Mexico, Peru, the Philippines, the United Kingdom, and the United States, Oceana is fighting for policies that will restore oceans to abundance in countries responsible for about one third of the wild fish caught each year.
Sharpless also led Oceana through the development and launch of Global Fishing Watch, an online platform that offers the first free global view of commercial fishing, in partnership with SkyTruth and Google. Sharpless sits on the Board of Directors for this now-independent organization.
Sharpless holds degrees from Harvard Law School, the London School of Economics, and Harvard College. He previously served in leadership roles at Discovery.com, RealNetworks, and the Museum of Television & Radio in New York City. His volunteer work includes serving as trustee and treasurer of Sidwell Friends School in Washington, D.C.