Today, I am pleased to appoint Russell Dunn as the NOAA Fisheries National Policy Advisor for Recreational Fisheries and to appoint 22 members of the recreational fishing community from around the nation to a Recreational Fisheries Working Group to provide expertise on saltwater recreational fishing to NOAA's Marine Fisheries Advisory Committee (MAFAC).
These actions fulfill a pledge made by NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco to the recreational fishing community to put in place the national advisor to help lead NOAA's efforts to create a stronger and more productive partnership between NOAA and America's saltwater angling community.
As national advisor, Russell Dunn will work with anglers to address their interests as we build and implement an action agenda to provide for the long-term health of fish stocks and work to protect and enhance the significant social and economic benefits fisheries provide to anglers and to our coastal communities. Russell will report directly to me.
Russell, who begins the job on March 28, brings 14 years of public and private-sector experience in national and international marine fisheries policy. He is respected for his experience and dedication by leaders of the recreational fishing industry. He has been the branch chief of NOAA Fisheries Highly Migratory Species Management Division, served as a policy advisor to the U.S. Delegation to the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas, and worked as director of government relations at the National Audubon Society on its Living Oceans Campaign. He also worked for then- Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell. An avid angler, Russell will be based in St. Petersburg, Fla, in the heart of the nation's largest recreational fishing region. He will serve as the national point of contact for the saltwater fishing community, and coordinate closely with both NOAA Fisheries national and regional staff.
His first duties will include helping Dr. Lubchenco and me to bring together over one hundred recreational fishing constituents and representatives from around the country, including the members of MAFAC's recreational fisheries working group, to a national summit on April 16 and 17 in Alexandria, Va. At the summit, we will explore issues important to recreational fisheries, and identify priority actions for moving forward.
Russell takes over for Gordon Colvin who has been serving as interim Senior Policy Advisor for the past 6 months. I would like to thank Gordon for his extraordinary service.
Please join me in welcoming Russell to this new and important role.
Eric C. Schwaab
NOAA Assistant Administrator for Fisheries