by Samantha Oester
Dr. Elliott Norse said it has taken several decades of academic training, research and career experience to learn to “save the diversity of life in a perilous, complex, anthropocentric world.” His history includes a Ph.D. from the University of Southern California and a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Iowa, as well as work at the US Environmental Protection Agency, White House Council on Environmental Quality, Ecological Society of America, The Wilderness Society and Ocean Conservancy. He founded the Marine Conservation Institute in 1996, where he is currently Chief Scientist. He is considered an expert in marine biology, marine conservation, environmental policy and conservation strategy.
Norse will be speaking at the 3rd International Marine Conservation Congress (IMCC3) in a speech titled, “A RAM-sized vision to save the world’s marine species.” This talk is in honor of his late friend and colleague Dr. Ransom A Myers. Norse explained that marine life is more imperiled than when he began as a marine scientist, that “ignorance and short-sightedness are our worst enemies,” and that working together is far more effective in saving the world’s oceans. “To succeed we need to go big, regional, at very least, or global, to win enduring conservation for the world’s oceans,” Norse declared. “We won’t get many chances. We need to be smart enough to get it right the first time. That’s why I’ve synthesized all I’ve learned in my career to talk with IMCC3 participants about the most important thing we will ever do: create the Global Ocean Refuge System (GLORES), the oceans’ in situ equivalent of the Global Seed Vault in Svalbard, to be the safety net for the Earth’s marine life.”
Norse is lauded as one of the world’s top marine conservation scientists. He is a Pew Fellow in Marine Conservation and was President of the Society for Conservation Biology’s Marine Section. He received the Nancy Foster Award for Habitat Conservation from the National Marine Fisheries Service and was named Brooklyn College 2008 Distinguished Alumnus. Additionally, he was awarded the 2012 Chairman’s Medal from the Seattle Aquarium.
Norse emphasized the importance of effective working relationships and is appreciative of the invitation to speak at IMCC in honor of Myers. Norse stated, “I feel deeply honored to be chosen as the Ransom A. Myers Memorial Lecturer to old friends and new friends at IMCC3. I hope RAM’s vision and the vision in this talk will inspire [everyone] to contribute to saving marine life, as we, marine conservation scientists, are uniquely equipped to do.”
IMCC3 is honored to have Norse close the conference’s main scientific program.
Norse will be featured as an IMCC3 plenary speaker on 18 August 2014 at the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre in Glasgow as the Dr. Ransom A. Myers Memorial Lecturer. Myers (1952-2007) was a world-renowned marine conservation scientist who was cited in Fortune magazine as one of the world’s ten people to watch for working to develop new and better ways to husband the wealth beneath the sea. He was known for his outward passion for marine conservation and his big ideas, projects and initiatives.
Follow Marine Conservation Institute on Twitter @savingoceans.
-Samantha Oester is Communications Chair for IMCC3. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org for information on the IMCC3 Plenary Speakers and other facets of the Congress.