National Fisherman

The Joint Ocean Commission Initiative has added five new members to its distinguished Leadership Council.

The Joint Initiative Leadership Council is co-chaired by the Honorable William Ruckelshaus and the Honorable Norman Mineta, with current members including former government officials, ocean industry leaders, and representatives from ocean-focused scientific organizations and environmental nongovernmental organizations.

The ocean leaders who have joined the highly-respected, bipartisan Leadership Council include:

  • Frances Beinecke – President of the National Resources Defense Council
  • Dr. Margaret Leinen – Director, Scripps Institution of Oceanography and Vice Chancellor for Marine Sciences, University of California, San Diego
  • Christopher Lischewski –President and Chief Executive Officer, Bumble Bee Foods, LLC
  • The Honorable Leon Panetta – Co-founder, Panetta Institute for Public Policy; Chair, Pew Oceans Commission
  • Randy Repass – Founder and Chairman of the Board of Directors, West Marine, Inc.

The Joint Initiative was created in 2005 as a collaborative effort between the U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy and the Pew Oceans Commission. Since its formation, the Joint Initiative has sustained a broad-based, bipartisan effort to catalyze meaningful ocean policy reform and action at the national, regional and state levels. These reforms are grounded in the recommendations embodied in the two commissions’ reports, with the Joint Initiative regularly updating the recommendations for continued relevance in the face of changing challenges and political circumstances.

The Joint Initiative looks forward to working closely with national, regional and state leaders as well as with the private sector to advance positive and lasting changes in the way we manage our nation’s oceans and coasts.

For more information on the Joint Initiative Leadership Council, please visit and follow the organization on Twitter @JointOceanCI.

Inside the Industry

NMFS recently released a draft action plan for fish discard and release mortality science, creating a list of actions that they hope can better inform fisheries.

We know that fishermen have to deal with bycatch by discarding or releasing unwanted catch overboard, but there is a data gap regarding how those fish survive.


A new study has identified a set of features common to all ocean ecosystems that provide a visual diagnosis of the health of the underwater environment coastal communities rely on.

Together, the features detail cumulative effects of threats -- such as overfishing, pollution, and invasive species,  allowing responders to act faster to increase ocean resiliency and sustainability.

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