Ms. Speer’s work currently focuses on conservation and management of marine biodiversity beyond national jurisdiction, an area known as the “high seas.” Comprising two thirds of the world’s oceans and covering almost half the planet’s surface, this global commons faces an increasing array of poorly controlled human activities. Ms. Speer conducts advocacy in a variety of international fora to promote integrated, precautionary management of human activities on the high seas. She has participated in many high seas fisheries negotiations, and has testified on numerous occasions before Congress and the United Nations on a variety of high seas management topics.
Ms. Speer’s other major focus is advocating for integrated, ecosystem based management in the Arctic Ocean, which faces major new industrial development at a time when global warming and loss of sea ice is profoundly affecting marine life.
Ms. Speer has served on a number of U.S. National Academy of Sciences’ Committees on the Arctic and marine issues, and served a six year term as a member of the Academies’ Board on Environmental Studies and Toxicology. Ms. Speer received her Master’s degree from Yale University and her bachelor’s degree from Mount Holyoke College.