May 28, 2015

Fisheries Leadership & Sustainability Forum to be Housed at Duke

Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions

The Fisheries Leadership & Sustainability Forum (Fisheries Forum), which provides policy-neutral support for the exploration of challenges and emerging issues facing our nation's federal fishery managers, will be housed exclusively within the Oceans and Coastal Policy Program of Duke University’s Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions. The transition will be effective this summer.

The Fisheries Forum was developed in 2008 as a partnership among four leading policy institutions: the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment, the Center for Ocean Solutions, the Nicholas Institute and the Environmental Defense Fund. Through this partnership, the Fisheries Forum has provided opportunities for networking, professional development, and continuing education among the federal fisheries management community, including members and staff of the regional fishery management councils and NOAA Fisheries.

“It has been a great privilege to help launch the Fisheries Forum, which has provided an invaluable opportunity for federal fishery leaders to network and hone the skills needed for sustainable fishery management in the United States,” said Buzz Thompson, co-director of the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment. “We are very pleased that the Nicholas Institute has agreed to serve as the forum’s permanent home.”

Amanda Leland, vice president for Environmental Defense Fund oceans: “The Fisheries Forum plays a critical role in providing our nation’s fisheries managers with access to cutting-edge expertise and information to help them make sound decisions. The Nicholas Institute is the right partner at the right time to continue this important work and ensure that one of our country’s most valuable natural resources—our ocean’s fisheries—are managed sustainably and capable of supporting future generations.”

Recent collaborations by the Fisheries Forum have explored climate change and governance habitat conservation, and opportunities for strengthening communication between scientists and decision makers to empower fishery managers to become leaders and innovative problem solvers in advancing the concept of sustainability.

“We thank the original partners for their years of support and dedication to the Fisheries Forum’s mission, to its staff, and to the partnership,” said Nicholas Institute Director Tim Profeta. “I am thrilled to bring the Fisheries Forum into the Nicholas Institute’s Oceans and Coastal Policy Program. The Fisheries Forum’s neutral brokerage of information and capacity to facilitate discussions among decision makers, management partners and stakeholders fits perfectly within the Nicholas Institute’s model for engagement.”

Program managers Katie Latanich, of Duke University, and Kim Gordon, currently at Stanford University, have stepped in as co-directors of the Fisheries Forum. They replace former Executive Director John Henderschedt, who has accepted a position as the director of the NOAA Fisheries Office of International Affairs and the Seafood Inspection Program.

“We are extremely fortunate to be able to draw on Katie Latanich’s and Kim Gordon’s knowledge, experience, and understanding of the Fisheries Forum’s value proposition through their leadership of the program,” said John Virdin, director of the Nicholas Institute’s Ocean and Coastal Policy Program. “I look forward to working with them, supporting their efforts, and collaborating in the exploration of new opportunities for the Fisheries Forum’s engagement.”

For more information on the Fisheries Forum, visit


Virdin, Latanich and Gordon are available for comment by contacting Erin McKenzie, or 919.613.3652.