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Thomas V. Grasso

Oceans Initiative Lead and Senior Program Officer

Tom leads the foundation’s Environment Program’s oceans initiative, which works in Chile, Mexico, Peru, Indonesia and the United States to make fishing the sustainability success story of the 21st century. In his role he oversees strategy implementation and grantmaking aimed at achieving the foundation’s strategic goals for the global oceans.

He brings over 20 years of leading successful international, national and regional conservation initiatives in the U.S., Europe, countries in Africa, Latin America and Asia. Just prior to joining the foundation, Tom was senior director for the Global Oceans Program at the Environmental Defense Fund. Before that he directed the fisheries and marine conservation program at the World Wildlife Fund. Prior to that he was executive director of the Maryland Office of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation where he led campaigns and strategies to save and restore the Chesapeake Bay.

In 2003, he was awarded the Lee Wulff Conservationist of the Year award, the highest honor in the United States for efforts to protect wild Atlantic salmon. In 2006 he was selected to participate in the Emerging Leaders for Innovation Across Systems Fellowship (ELIAS) with MIT’s Sloan School of Management, an international fellowship with participants from around the world. He has also taught graduate school courses at the University of Maryland School of Law, where he was an adjunct faculty and the Marlboro College graduate program where he was faculty partner.

Tom received his Bachelor of Art in Political Science from the University of Rochester in Rochester, New York, and received a Juris Doctorate from the Washington College of Law at The American University in Washington, D.C.

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