Sonja Fordham

Sonja Fordham founded Shark Advocates International as a project of The Ocean Foundation in 2010 based on her two decades of shark conservation experience at Ocean Conservancy. Her work focuses on publicizing the plight of sharks and advocating science-based remedies before fishery management and wildlife conservation bodies. She has been a leading proponent of landmark shark conservation actions, including U.S. and European protections, international fishing limits, various finning bans, and listings under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species and the Convention on Migratory Species. Sonja is Deputy Chair of the IUCN Shark Specialist Group and Conservation Committee Chair for the American Elasmobranch Society, has co-authored numerous publications on shark fisheries management, and serves on most U.S. government advisory panels relevant to sharks and rays. Her awards include the U.S. Department of Commerce Environmental Hero Award, the Peter Benchley Shark Conservation Award, and the IUCN Harry Messel Award for Conservation Leadership.

Marty Snyderman

Marty Snyderman is a still photographer, film producer, author, and speaker specializing in the marine environment. Marty's still photography and/or writing has been utilized by National Geographic Magazine, Skin Diver Magazine, numerous National Wildlife Federation publications, Natural History, Dive Training, Sport Diver, Time, Newsweek, Time Life, the Monterey Bay Aquarium, the New England Aquarium, Sea World, and the Seattle Aquarium, and by numerous other publications and organizations worldwide. Marty serves as the Marine Life Editor and as a regular columnist for Dive Training magazine. He has been involved in underwater photography for 25 years and continues to produce compelling images of marine life in attempts to raise awareness and interest about many marine issues. Marty is an Emmy Award winning cinematographer, and his work has been used by PBS, Shark Week, Warner Brothers (Free Willy), the National Geographic Society, NOVA, the British Broadcasting Corporation, many major broadcast networks and many more organizations expressing interest in marine wildlife.

Johann Mourier

Dr. Johann Mourier, Ph.D. is a scientist specializing in sharks' behavioral ecology. Since 2005, he has spent a large amount of time in direct contact with sharks and rays (including great white, basking, great hammerhead, lemon, grey reef or blacktip reef sharks, and stingrays and manta rays) to study their behavior using a set of advanced and non-invasive techniques such as social network theory, molecular analysis, biotelemetry, photo-identification, hormones and isotopes analyses. Johann has published his research in several peer-reviewed scientific journals, making him a worldwide recognized shark expert. He is the secretary and scientific advisor for a shark observatory in French Polynesia (Observatoire des Requins de Polynésie), which records and gathers all elasmobranch observations in the region, and is also a member and advisor of other shark associations. He has contributed to several documentaries and press articles in the perspective of contributing to public awareness and education about sharks. All his actions follow the same aspiration: to contribute to a better conservation efficiency of sharks and rays.

Tim Taylor

Tim Taylor is an accomplished ocean explorer and entrepreneur. He has spent more than thirty years working in the marine industry. Tim has spent his life working with innovative diving technologies and has a reputation for leading underwater expeditions that add to the scientific knowledge in the fields of oceanography, archaeology, biology and geology. He has discovered and explored numerous reefs, including Sherwood Forest Reef, considered the centerpiece of the Tortugas Ecological Reserve, Pulley Ridge, the deepest hermatypic coral reef in the world and Black Forest Run, the largest black coral tract in the United States. He personally lead a team that mapped 1800 square miles of remote ocean bottom at 1500 meters utilizing state of the art AUV systems. His most resent accomplishments include the discovery, exploration, and documentation of two WWII submarine USS R-12 that was lost in WWII in 600 feet of water entombing 42 sailors (2 Brazilian Officers) and the USS S-26 with 46 sailors. A Fellow in the Explorers Club, in 2008 he was awarded the club's prestigious Citation of Merit in recognition of his explorations. He has also been awarded the Brazilian Navy's title of Honorary Submariner and is recipient of the Brazilian Navy Leagues Medal of Honor, for the work on the USS R-12. Tim has been profiled in the London Financial Times, The New York Times, Bloomberg News and appears regularly on FOX, CNBC, BBC, CBC, and CNN as an ocean technology and robotics expert.

Rex Weyler

Rex Weyler is one of the founders of Greenpeace International, and sailed on the organization's first whale campaign. Rex is a well respected journalist, writer, and ecologist whose photography and essays have been published in the New York Times, Oceans, Smithsonian, Rolling Stone, New Age Journal, Conscious Choice, New Times, Shared Vision, National Geographic, and other publications.

Francesca Koe

Francesca Koe is a scuba instructor holding advanced teaching qualifications from both PADI and DAN. An avid freediver and oceans advocate, Francesca co-founded the tsunami relief project, Paavima.org, and is a key member of the Blue Matters project -- a team advancing the scientific use of rebreathers for deep ocean exploration. When not in the water, Francesca directs strategy and communications for an international environmental advocacy organization, and manages editorial content as the senior editor for Deeperblue.com, where she contributes articles on dive safety across all disciplines. In 2007, Francesca was appointed to the Board of Trustees of the Farallones Marine Sanctuary Association; in 2009, she was appointed to the Board of Trustees for SF Baykeeper, and currently serves as the Vice President of the United States Apnea Association.

Stephan Whelan

Stephan Whelan is the founder of DeeperBlue.com, a leading website and community for underwater enthusiasts of Freediving, Scuba Diving, and Spearfishing. A keen scuba diver since an early age and more recently a freediver, Stephan is a passionate ocean advocate and regularly provides support for various marine conservation groups around the world. Above water, Stephan has held senior positions in various IT organisations and lives with his wife in London, UK.

Jim Toomey

For the past 20 years Jim Toomey has been writing and drawing the daily comic strip Sherman's Lagoon, which is syndicated to over 150 newspapers in North America, including the Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, the San Francisco Chronicle, and the Toronto Star. It also appears in over 20 foreign countries, in French, Portuguese, Spanish, Norwegian and Swedish. Jim has just completed his eighteenth book, published by Andrews McMeel. Sherman's Lagoon combines two of his life-long passions: art and the sea. In addition to drawing his comic strip, Jim is active in marine conservation, and has been recognized by many organizations, such as the United Nations Environmental Programme, NOAA, NPR, TED, and Discovery Channel for raising public awareness of the oceans in a humorous way.

Sonja Fordham

Sonja Fordham founded Shark Advocates International as a project of The Ocean Foundation in 2010 based on her two decades of shark conservation experience at Ocean Conservancy. Her work focuses on publicizing the plight of sharks and advocating science-based remedies before fishery management and wildlife conservation bodies. She has been a leading proponent of landmark shark conservation actions, including U.S. and European protections, international fishing limits, various finning bans, and listings under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species and the Convention on Migratory Species. Sonja is Deputy Chair of the IUCN Shark Specialist Group and Conservation Committee Chair for the American Elasmobranch Society, has co-authored numerous publications on shark fisheries management, and serves on most U.S. government advisory panels relevant to sharks and rays. Her awards include the U.S. Department of Commerce Environmental Hero Award, the Peter Benchley Shark Conservation Award, and the IUCN Harry Messel Award for Conservation Leadership.

Marty Snyderman

Marty Snyderman is a still photographer, film producer, author, and speaker specializing in the marine environment. Marty's still photography and/or writing has been utilized by National Geographic Magazine, Skin Diver Magazine, numerous National Wildlife Federation publications, Natural History, Dive Training, Sport Diver, Time, Newsweek, Time Life, the Monterey Bay Aquarium, the New England Aquarium, Sea World, and the Seattle Aquarium, and by numerous other publications and organizations worldwide. Marty serves as the Marine Life Editor and as a regular columnist for Dive Training magazine. He has been involved in underwater photography for 25 years and continues to produce compelling images of marine life in attempts to raise awareness and interest about many marine issues. Marty is an Emmy Award winning cinematographer, and his work has been used by PBS, Shark Week, Warner Brothers (Free Willy), the National Geographic Society, NOVA, the British Broadcasting Corporation, many major broadcast networks and many more organizations expressing interest in marine wildlife.

Johann Mourier

Dr. Johann Mourier, Ph.D. is a scientist specializing in sharks' behavioral ecology. Since 2005, he has spent a large amount of time in direct contact with sharks and rays (including great white, basking, great hammerhead, lemon, grey reef or blacktip reef sharks, and stingrays and manta rays) to study their behavior using a set of advanced and non-invasive techniques such as social network theory, molecular analysis, biotelemetry, photo-identification, hormones and isotopes analyses. Johann has published his research in several peer-reviewed scientific journals, making him a worldwide recognized shark expert. He is the secretary and scientific advisor for a shark observatory in French Polynesia (Observatoire des Requins de Polynésie), which records and gathers all elasmobranch observations in the region, and is also a member and advisor of other shark associations. He has contributed to several documentaries and press articles in the perspective of contributing to public awareness and education about sharks. All his actions follow the same aspiration: to contribute to a better conservation efficiency of sharks and rays.

Tim Taylor

Captain Tim Taylor is an accomplished naturalist and explorer with over 25 years of underwater experience. In recognition of his discovery of the Sherwood Forest Reef tract in the Dry Tortugas, Tim was honored as a Fellow National in the Explorers Club in 2004. Sherwood Forest is considered the centerpiece of the Tortugas Ecological Reserve and has become world famous since its discovery in 1997. Tim's experience includes 18 years as a US Coast Guard Captain, numerous SCUBA instructor ratings, underwater still and video expertise, and extensive fieldwork. He has guided many world famous researchers and explorers such as Dr. Sylvia Earle and Dr. Eugenie Clarke on expeditions in the Bahamas, Cuba, and the Florida Keys. Tim is currently President and CEO of the Research Vessel Tiburon, Inc., based in Key West Florida.

Rex Weyler

Rex Weyler is one of the founders of Greenpeace International, and sailed on the organization's first whale campaign. Rex is a well respected journalist, writer, and ecologist whose photography and essays have been published in the New York Times, Oceans, Smithsonian, Rolling Stone, New Age Journal, Conscious Choice, New Times, Shared Vision, National Geographic, and other publications.

Francesca Koe

Francesca Koe is a scuba instructor holding advanced teaching qualifications from both PADI and DAN. An avid freediver and oceans advocate, Francesca co-founded the tsunami relief project, Paavima.org, and is a key member of the Blue Matters project -- a team advancing the scientific use of rebreathers for deep ocean exploration. When not in the water, Francesca directs strategy and communications for an international environmental advocacy organization, and manages editorial content as the senior editor for Deeperblue.com, where she contributes articles on dive safety across all disciplines. In 2007, Francesca was appointed to the Board of Trustees of the Farallones Marine Sanctuary Association; in 2009, she was appointed to the Board of Trustees for SF Baykeeper, and currently serves as the Vice President of the United States Apnea Association.

Stephan Whelan

Stephan Whelan is the founder of DeeperBlue.com, a leading website and community for underwater enthusiasts of Freediving, Scuba Diving, and Spearfishing. A keen scuba diver since an early age and more recently a freediver, Stephan is a passionate ocean advocate and regularly provides support for various marine conservation groups around the world. Above water, Stephan has held senior positions in various IT organisations and lives with his wife in London, UK.

Jim Toomey

For the past 20 years Jim Toomey has been writing and drawing the daily comic strip Sherman's Lagoon, which is syndicated to over 150 newspapers in North America, including the Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, the San Francisco Chronicle, and the Toronto Star. It also appears in over 20 foreign countries, in French, Portuguese, Spanish, Norwegian and Swedish. Jim has just completed his eighteenth book, published by Andrews McMeel. Sherman's Lagoon combines two of his life-long passions: art and the sea. In addition to drawing his comic strip, Jim is active in marine conservation, and has been recognized by many organizations, such as the United Nations Environmental Programme, NOAA, NPR, TED, and Discovery Channel for raising public awareness of the oceans in a humorous way.