Biennial report 2007–08


M ission stat eM en t
the Marine Fish Conservation Network advocates for national policies to achieve healthy oceans and productive fisheries. the Network is the largest national coalition solely dedicated to promoting the long-term sustainability of marine fish. With almost 200 members—including environmental organizations, commercial and recreational fishing associations, aquariums, and marine science groups—the Network uses its distinct voice and the best available science to educate policymakers, the fishing industry, and the public about the need for sound conservation and better management practices.

Dear Members and Supporters of the Network,

In January 2007 the Marine Fish Conservation Network celebrated a tremendous victory: signing into law the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Reauthorization Act (MSRA). the Network and its member groups convinced Congress and president Bush that conservation reforms were needed for the Magnuson-Stevens Act of 1996. Led by my predecessor, Lee Crockett, it was the culmination of eight years of grass roots organizing, technical analysis, and educating Congress and the media about the importance of sustainable fish populations for the health of the nation’s fisheries and how the Magnuson Stevens Act should be improved. In January 2009, a key element for implementing the MSrA was finalized by the National Marine Fisheries Service: revised guidelines for setting annual catch limits (ACLs) and accountability measures. Here too, the Network and its Members pressed hard for a conservation-oriented set of rules. Between these two signature events is a record of many other Network accomplishments, which we have documented in this report. Since its founding in 1992, the Network has been in the forefront of efforts to stop overfishing and rebuild sustainable fish stocks, as the History of the Network timeline shows (p. 6). Now that the MSrA is law and ACL guidelines are in place, we intend to maintain this tradition during a new period that will focus on implementing the MSrA, building support for ecosystem-based fisheries management, and working toward a national oceans policy. While all this conservation success was achieved (and with little fanfare) the Network took one other major step in its history, becoming an independent non-governmental organization in August 2006. please accept this first Network Biennial report on our first two years (fiscal years 2007-08). If you have any questions about what you find here, or would like more detailed information on Network programs, please let me know. And thank you for your part in the Marine Fish Conservation Network’s successes. Sincerely,

Bruce J. Stedman, executive Director

How the Network Came of Age
the Marine Fish Conservation network is a broad-based coalition of almost 200 conservation organizations, commercial and recreational fishing associations, aquariums, and marine science groups, dedicated to promoting the long-term sustainability of ocean fish and fisheries. the network was originally founded in 1992 and operated as a small project focusing on the Magnuson stevens act. after the act was passed in 1996, the network was closed; the founders saw that the mission had been accomplished and it seemed that there was no further need for the network. in 1998, the network was reopened as a project of the american Littoral society (aLs), a non-profit located in new Jersey and operated as such for the next eight years. in november 2005, the network’s Board of advisors decided that the network’s independence was important and essential to its growth and voted for separation from aLs. on January 26, 2006, the network incorporated in the District of Columbia as a non-profit corporation. on august 4, 2006, the network was recognized by the internal Revenue service as a stand-alone nonprofit organization. today, the network operates from its national office in Washington, DC with a staff of 8 full-time professionals and in 2008 celebrated its 16th Year anniversary since the original founding in 1992.



Nonpartisan Research and Analysis the network conducts independent, nonpartisan research and analysis using the best science available on marine conservation issues of interest to its members and the general public. this research, analysis, and report writing includes developing network policy statements, letters, fact sheets, analysis of federal legislation and administrative regulations, and policy positions and reports.

these reports, as well as reports from other groups that contain the network’s research and analysis, are made available to the public via the network’s website and through distribution by network members. Public Education and Media the network and its member organizations are dedicated to conserving and restoring america’s ocean fish populations, which are essential natural resources. the network is able to reach and educate a large segment of

the public through its member organizations and their relationships with the media. it is the network’s view that when the public is well-informed about how U.s. fisheries are managed, it will insist that regional and federal managers prevent overfishing (fishing at unsustainably high rates), minimize bycatch (the catching and killing of non-target ocean wildlife), and protect essential fish habitat. the network uses a variety of techniques to increase public understanding about these issues through accurate and informative reports in newspapers, magazines, websites, radio and television. the network arranges and coordinates news media events to generate national and regional media coverage. Media strategies are generally focused around other network activities such as the release of a report. our focus is to generate as much media attention as possible, and to assist our member organizations in creating a powerful presence in the marine conservation community that educates and allows the public to make informed decisions on marine conservation.

Regional Marine Conservation We are continuously generating media coverage and seek to increase public participation in regional fisheries management decisions. Fundraising and Annual Events Fundraising activities are largely focused on foundation grant-making, which includes researching potential foundation sources, meeting with foundation officers, writing letters of interest, developing grant proposals and budgets, and submitting necessary narrative and financial reports. the network has recently expanded its scope of fundraising to include online donations, fundraising events in different regions as well as monetary and in-kind support from our coalition member groups. annually, the network hosts two major events — Fish Fest: a Celebration of sustainable seafood and the annual Meeting, in which 100 or more of our general membership gathers to share information and resources to strengthen the network’s agenda.


The NeTwork was FouNded by five conservation groups, the Center for Marine Conservation (now ocean Conservancy), Greenpeace, national audubon society, national Coalition for Marine Conservation, and World Wildlife Fund. the network developed a national agenda to change the focus of the MFCMa (Magnuson Fishery Conservation and Management act) from promoting the fishing industry to promoting conservation, management, and protection of the nation’s fish populations.

a NaTioNal grassrooTs campaigaN originates to generate public awareness of fisheries issues and support for H.R. 4404, the Marine Fish Conservation amendments of 1994, sponsored by Rep. Wayne Gilchrest.

Former NeTwork supporTers reesTablish The NeTwork, under the american oceans Campaign, to strengthen the Msa during reauthorization. Lee Crockett is hired as executive director.

The FirsT aNNual meeTiNg oF members is held. Rep. Wayne Gilchrest introduces the network’s Msa reauthorization agenda (H.R. 4046, the Fisheries Recovery act) along with 40 co-sponsors.










NeTwork membership rapidly expaNds, in conjunction with the hiring of Bill Mott as the first exectutive director. Membership includes more than 100 national and local conservation, environmental, scientific, and citizen organizations, commercial and recreational fishermen, aquariums, and other sustainable fishing advocates that endorse the network’s agenda.

The susTaiNable Fisheries acT (sFa), P.L. 104-297 is signed into law by President Clinton on october 11, 1996, including a portion of the network’s Msa reauthorization agenda, prompting a decision that the network should disband.

The NeTwork relocaTes to offices in the american oceans Campaign in Washington, DC.

americaN liTToral socieTy becomes the fiscal agent to the network and takes over the american oceans Campaign offices at 600 Pennsylvania ave., se.

couNcil reForm eFForTs begiN when Rep. nick Rahall introduces the Fisheries Management Reform act of 2004 (H.R. 4706) with 68 co-sponsors.

coNgress uNaNimously passes the Magnuson-stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Reauthorization act (MsRa). the network is officially recognized by the iRs as a 501(c) (3) not-for-profit organization.

The NeTwork pushed for strengthened annual catch limits (aCLs) and accountability measures (aMs) in a newer version of national standard 1 (ns1). the proposed nePa Rule was withdrawn after a network-led grassroots campaign.










The iNaugural Fish FesT is held. Rep. sam Farr introduces the network’s agenda (H.R. 2570, the Fisheries Recovery act of 2001) along with 101 co-sponsors.

The NeTwork iFQ ageNda (H.R. 2621, the Fishing Quota standards act of 2003) is introduced by Rep. tom allen along with 27 co-sponsors.

The Fisheries scieNce aNd maNagemeNT eNhaNcemeNT acT oF 2005 (H.R. 1431) is introduced on March 17, 2005 by Rep. nick Rahall and 75 co-sponsors. on July 14, the network iFQ agenda is reintroduced by Rep. tom allen as the Fishing Quota standards act of 2005 (H.R. 3278) with four co-sponsors.

presideNT bush sigNs the MsRa enacted into law on January 11, 2007 (P. L. 109-479); Bruce stedman begins as executive director in september.

Fish Fest ANd Annual Meetings
For the sixth and seventh times, Members of Congress, fishermen and ocean advocates convened at the Cannon House office Building on Capitol Hill to indulge in Fish Fest: a Celebration of sustainable seafood. each year we gather to thank the Congress for its work on marine conservation, to eat ecologically friendly delicacies, mingle with each other, and meet and greet renowned celebrity chefs such as Rock Harper. the annual June event occurs in tandem with the annual meeting. network members discuss sustainability and are rewarded with sustenance from notable Metro-area restaurants such as the art institute of Washington, B. smith’s, Bistro B and Vidalia, Butterfield 9, Café saint-ex, Catering by Chef, inc., Coppi’s organic Restaurant, Growlers of Gaithersburg, Hook, Lynette’s Cakes and Catering, Matchbox, Mio Restaurant, Phoenix Park Hotel, Ps 7, terra Verde, the Reef, tosca and Veridian. sustainably caught fish was provided by alaska Longline Fishermen’s association, Bering select seafood, Columbia River Crab Fishermen’s association, ecoFish, Fishbusterz sea Market, J.J. McDonnell, Marvin and annette Bellamy, Monarch seafood, oregon trawl Commission, Paula turrell and Dick Hofmann, Prime seafood, samuels & son seafood Company, Washington Dungeness Crab Fishermen’s association, and Yukon River Drainage Fisheries association. Fish Fest celebrates responsible fishermen and Members of Congress who continue to protect the sea by enacting and enforcing sustainable fishing practices.


the annual meetings allow Members the chance to convene, catch up and converse about industry-specific subject matter, and to visit Capitol Hill. During the meetings Members discuss topics such as implementation of the Magnuson-stevens act, environmental review, ecosystem-based fishery management, national ocean policy, appropriations for noaa, aquaculture and other topics of concern. Member organizations and staff address the rest of the network with updates and reports. During the 2007 annual Meeting, executive Director Lee Crockett, was honored for his tenure with the network.


2007–2008 FISH FEST SEAFOOd PROVIdERS: alaska Longline Fishermen’s association Bering select seafood Columbia River Crab Fishermen’s association ecoFish Fishbusterz sea Market J. J. McDonell Marvin & annette Bellany Monarch seafood oregon trawl Commission Paula turrell & Dick Hofmann Prime seafood samuels & son seafood Company seafood Producers Cooperative Washington Dungeness Crab Fishermen’s association Yukon River Drainage Fisheries association


art institute of Washington B. smith’s Bistro Bis and Vidalia Butterfield 9 Café saint-ex Catering by Chef, inc. Chef Flavor Catering Coppi’s organic Restaurant Growlers of Gaithersburg Hook Matchbox Mio Restaurant Phoenix Park Hotel Ps 7 terra Verde the Reef Veridian


Carlos amaya Jeff Buben Justin Clyburn Rock Harper Michael Harr Lynnette Jackson Ken Kaiser Barton seaver Le’Jon Williams alexander Zeppos

alaska Marine Conservation Council Food & Water Watch Greenpeace Gulf Restoration network oceana

THANK yOu! THANK yOu! THANK yOu! Every year for the past nine years, the Marine Fish Conservation Network hosts Fish Fest on Capitol Hill to which we invite congressional members, our boards of advisors and directors, and our general membership. Top chefs from the greater metropolitan area of the District of Columbia volunteer their expertise and create specialized seafood dishes for the events. We acknowledge and appreciate the support from within and about the community. This page is dedicated to those very special friends of the Network who have continuously made this event possible.

— from all of us at the Network

The Network

2007–2008 A reCord oF ACCoMplisHMeNT
rules and practices (including nMFsmanaged highly migratory shark FMP). submitted technical comments on other nMFs rulemakings from the MsRa (e.g. confidentiality, ns2, experimental fishing permits).

Opposition to Legislation That Would Weaken the MSRA E Joined with network Member groups to oppose Flexibility in rebuilding American Fisheries Act of 2008 submitted to Congress that would weaken MsRa provisions. Nonpartisan Research and Analysis E An improved Ns1 rule. the network led the successful campaign (with Member groups Pew environment Group and environment america) — policy analysis, grass roots activities, media, and agency communications — to pass a strong national standard 1 (ns1) rule on annual catch limits (aCLs) and accountability measures (aMs). E Wrote and distributed a white paper on the policy and conservation implications of MsRa: A New Course for America’s Fish and Fishermen. A review of the Magnusonstevens reauthorization Act of 2006 and the Challenges Ahead. E Wrote and distributed a white paper on chronic overfishing. Taking stock: The Cure for Chronic overfishing. E Wrote 4 regional reports that pressed councils to end overfishing, and highlighted regional fishery management council achievements and deficiencies E Conducted extensive research and comparative analysis of council overfishing



Advocacy for Maintaining and Implementing Environmental Review In Fisheries Management. E the network led the successful campaign — grass roots activities, media, and agency engagement (with Pew environment Group and environment america) — to withdraw a deeply flawed rule on environmental review.


Co-organized (with Point Reyes Bird observatory) and served on a regional forage fish steering committee writing an action plan for protection of forage fish and advancement of ecosystem-based management in the California Current Large Marine ecosystem — ecosystem-based Management of West Coast Forage species. opposed MsC Certification for Ca sardines. the network organized (with the network member national Coalition for Marine Conservation) an international coalition of groups working to oppose forage fish certification by Marine stewardship Council under their current guidelines, and





to improve their guidelines for the future [certification delayed]; and sent a letter opposing MsC certification of the antarctic krill fishery [under consideration]. submitted national scientist sign-on letter to nMFs urging improved forage fish management (with 93 signatories). Pressed for banning or reducing menhaden fishing. the network campaigned to press the nC Marine Fisheries Commission to amend state regulations to prohibit reduction fisheries for menhaden in state waters [which the commission declined to do]; pressed the atlantic states Marine Fisheries Commission to pass amendment 2 to the shad and River Herring interstate Fishery Management Plan [asMFC overwhelmingly passed amendment 2]; and campaigned (as the save the Bait Coalition in partnership with the network member Gulf Restoration network) to convince the Mississippi Commission on Marine Resources to implement a catch limit for the Gulf menhaden reduction fishery in state waters [which they declined to do]. in texas, the save the Bait Coalition campaigned for an annual catch limit for the menhaden reduction fishery. [the texas Parks and Wildlife Commission instituted an aCL of 31.5 million pounds.]. Developed new forage fish website —



Conducted policy research and analysis (supporting the lead of several network Member groups) and facilitated consensus among network advisors opposing offshore aquaculture until national legislation is enacted that is sufficiently protective of wild fish populations and fisheries. submitted technical comments and signed on to campaign letters (with other member groups) opposing Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council establishing a fisheries management plan (FMP) allowing and insufficiently regulating commercial offshore aquaculture. [GMFMC chose to approve the FMP.]


Conducted research on FY08, FY09, and FY10 budgets and appropriations, and produced major fact sheets used for Hill education, and worked with our member groups to lobby Congress for more nMFs funding.






Provided detailed comments on drafts of proposed oceans 21 (HR21) legislation, a proposed Presidential executive order, a reinvestment oceans trust fund. Participated (with network member groups) in planning for 2009 legislative campaign.

submitted technical comment letter on guidelines being developed by nMFs for implementing LaPPs. Pressed for improved Pacific Groundfish LaPP, in a technical comment letter opposing some aspects of the Pacific Groundfish (trawl) Fishery Management Plan amendment 20. [Final decision under consideration.] Hosted annual Fish Fest: A Celebration of sustainable seafood for members of Congress and their staffs in 2007 and 2008.


BOARd OF AdVISORS (as of December 2008)

alaska longline Fishermen’s association Linda Behnken, lead Contact alaska marine conservation council Dorothy Childers, program director cape cod commercial hook Fishermen’s association Paul Parker, executive director conservation law Foundation Peter shelley, Vice president and director environment america Mike Gravitz, oceans advocate Food & water watch sascha Bullag, legislative Coordinator; Fish program greenpeace Phil Kline, senior ocean Campaigner gulf restoration Network aaron Viles, Campaign director hawaii audubon society Linda Paul, director of the Aquatics division international game Fish association Jason schratwieser, Conservation director Jersey coast anglers association tom Fote, legislative Chairperson

monterey bay aquarium Geoff shester, senior science Manager sustainable seafood initiative National coalition for marine conservation Ken Hinman, president Natural resources defense council Laura Pagano, oceans program staff Attorney oceana Buffy Baumann, Fisheries Advocate ocean conservancy Dana Wolfe, Manager, legislative program pacific coast Federation of Fishermen’s association Zeke Grader, executive director pacific marine conservation council Peter Huhtala, senior policy director seaweb Philip Chou, Manager of Conservation ourtreach, seafood Choices Alliance sierra club John swingle, National Marine Committee Wildlife & Habitat Chair united anglers of california Bob strickland, president


FORMER ANd CuRRENT BOARd OF dIRECTORS (as of December 2008)

Gerry Leape, president Vice President, Pew environment Group Michelle Pilliod, Treasurer Pilliod Meeting Planning, President Phil Kline, secretary Greenpeace senior oceans Campaigner Leslie Harroun oak Foundation senior Program officer

eric Rardin Business Development Director Linda Paul Hawaii audobon society Director of auquatics Division Former directors Peter Huhtala, secretary Pacific Marine Conservation Council Jay nelson Pew Charitable trusts Director of the ocean Legacy Project

STAFF (as of December 2008)

Carolina Gou-Leonhardt Administrative and Fundraising Assistant sera Harold south Atlantic regional representative Keith Mcallister Technology and e-Activism Manager Brooks Mountcastle Mid-Atlantic regional representative
FORMER STAFF (2007 – May 2008)

Julie sherman pacific regional representative Bruce stedman executive director Ken stump director of policy tom Wheatley Gulf of Mexico regional representative


najah abdullah director of Finance and Administration (2/06-6/08) Mary austill director of policy (1/06-2/07) tony DeFalco director of regional operations (5/03-10/08) Cassandra Burdyshaw special projects intern (11/06-4/07) Hilary Goodwin special projects intern (12/07-1/09)

Lee Crockett executive director (11/98-6/07) Maritza estridge special projects intern (6/07-8/07) Caroline Keicher south Atlantic regional organizer (9/05-7/07) thomas Kitsos interim executive director (6/07-8/07) Joanna Knight Media specialist (9/03-9/07)

Jeff Lambert Media intern (6/07-8/07) John Marius Technology and e-Activism Manager (10/03-1/07) Kate sherman office and research Assistant (9/06-11/07)

2007–2008 Funders


Curtis and edith Munson Foundation David and Lucile Packard Foundation Henry Foundation Marisla Foundation norcross Wildlife Foundation oak Foundation ocean Foundation Pew Charitable trusts Rockefeller Brothers Fund sandler Family support Foundation schaub Foundation surdna Foundation Zephyr Charitable Foundation

Dorothy Childers tom Fote Michael Gravitz Leslie a. Harroun Phil Kline Gerry Leape Jay nelson Michelle Pilliod eric Rardin Peter shelley

Boeing Captain’s Pride Charter, inc. Good search ocean awareness Project Patagonia, inc. tranquilla sport Fishing, LLC Washington transportation Commission
MATCHINg gIFTS Black & Decker Jean Flemma Pew Charitable trusts

alaska Longline Fishermen’s association alaska Marine Conservation Council Columbia River Crab Fishermen’s association Food & Water Watch Greenpeace Gulf Restoration network international Game Fish association national Coalition for Marine Conservation national environmental trust natural Resource Defense Council oceana sierra Club the ocean Conservancy the ocean Foundation U.s. Public interest Research Groups Wash. Dungeness Crab Fishermen’s association


najah abdullah Cassandra Burdyshaw Lee Crockett tony DeFalco Caroline Keicher Joanna Knight John Marius Brooks Mountcastle Karen Putterman eric Rardin Bruce stedman thomas Wheatley

David allison Baykal askar saskia Baur anita Behnken tiane C. Benson Joan M. Bondareff angel Braestrup nancy Breen Julia Brennan Capt. Jose Campos William Chandler Kathryn Chiariello Will Cook Michael Cox Lee Crockett alexandra C. Dane Francesca Dea David Dickson Robert s. Distiler susan Dragieff Jennifer Drazek Jean Flemma Rishard D. Ford stephen Fordham Gale Gough Don Griffith

Judith Havens natalie Holcombe Marcia Johnson Michael King Mary Kitsos thomas Kitsos Paul Koski Jacqueline LaBelle Peter McKinney Gerald McMurray Michael Miller Mary Moffit adrianna natsoulas Karl a. ohls Phillip a. Parker nicholas Pearson Karen Putterman Robert & Lisa Quann Kaiten Rivers Brenda schlegel Peter schweinsberg Christopher senn thomas siciliano Veronica slaker & Jack Ferguson Belinda smith Bradley sorock Dale and Marilyn stedman Mark tanny nicholas Vartzikos Christopher Williams Jonathan Williams Kristopher Youtz


Captain’s Pride Charter, inc. environmental Defense Fund Fish the Bay Charters, LLC Prime select seafoods steptoe & Johnson, LLC tranquilla sport Fishing, LLC

MArINe FISH CoNServAtIoN NetWork





Cash and cash equivalents accounts receivable Grants receivable Prepaid expenses total current assets


179,249 4,339 1,431 9,534 194,553 57,140 7,650 46,856 111,646 (65,251) 46,395


173,683 544 205,342 9,534 389,103 56,970 – 36,715 93,685 (30,778) 62,907

Furniture and equipment Website development cost Computers and equipment Less: accumulated depreciation and amortization


$ 240,948

$ 452,010

accounts payable and accrued liabilities Deferred revenue Deposit total current liabilities


57,959 79,214 1,500 138,673 (166,725) 269,000 102,275


131,319 – 1,500 132,819 (194,378) 513,569 319,191

Unrestricted temporarily restricted total net assets TOTAl lIABIlITIES ANd NET ASSETS

$ 240,948

$ 452,010

MArINe FISH CoNServAtIoN NetWork




Contributions Foundation grants Consulting fees interest income Rental income other revenue net assets released from donor restrictions total revenue

$ 504,274 275,000 106,386 1,895 45,868 7,129 940,552

$ 631,989 355,000 7,409 29,933 817 1,025,148

Program services supporting services: Management and general fundraising total supporting services total expenses

794,308 355,257 7,903 363,160 1,157,468 (216,916) 319,191 $ 102,275

1,261,167 114,553 1,322 115,875 1,377,042 (351,894) 671,085 $ 319,191


Beginning of year end of year

600 Pennsylvania avenue, se · suite 210 Washington, DC 20003 Phone 202.543.5509 · fax 202.543.5774