About Us

About Ocean Elders

Ocean Elders brings together global leaders to use their collective influence to pursue the protection of the ocean’s habitat and wildlife. We heed The Seventh Generation Principle, which is based on the Iroquois philosophy and codified in the Iroquois Great Law of Peace (the model for the U.S. Constitution) that the decisions we make today should lead to a sustainable world seven generations into the future.

Since our founding, we have worked closely with partners to advocate for the creation, continued protection and/or expansion of marine protected areas, the creation and implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 14: Life Below Water, a new treaty for the high seas, and the protection of marine wildlife.

Our History
The idea for Ocean Elders began on the Mission Blue voyage to the Galapagos Islands in April 2010, where over 100 scientists, business leaders, philanthropists, and entertainment icons came together to support Dr. Sylvia Earle, 2009 TED Prize Winner, in her TED Wish to draw public attention to the urgent need for ocean protection.

Inspired by the powerful words of Dr. Sylvia Earle, Gigi Brisson founded Ocean Elders to merge the deep knowledge of scientists with the power of amplifiers; people who could reach broader audiences as well as government and business leaders.  The objective was to be the voice for the ocean as it was in such desperate need of an ardent and concerted defense.

Since welcoming Dr. Earle as the first Ocean Elder in June of that year, Ocean Elders has grown to include many of the most influential voices not only in ocean protection and conservation, but in biodiversity, cultural wisdom, and nature, as these disciplines are inextricably linked.

Ocean MPA Statistics
Fully Protected Marine Areas (% of the ocean)3%
Total Marine Protected Areas (% of the ocean)5%
Sustainable Development Goal 14 Target by 2020 (% of the ocean)10%