Margaret Spring

Chief Conservation and Science Officer at the Monterey Bay Aquarium and Chair of the ISC expert group on plastic pollution
Chair of US NAS Committee on the US Contributions to Global Ocean Plastic Waste

Margaret Spring joined the Conservation and Science Officer at the Monterey Bay Aquarium in 2013 to oversee its many conservation and science initiatives, including all ocean science policy work, the Seafood Watch sustainable seafood initiative and conservation research programs.

Margaret brings a wealth of experience to the position. From 2009 to 2013, she held leadership roles at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, first as chief of staff and then as principal deputy undersecretary for oceans and atmosphere.

Prior to her tenure in the Obama Administration, Margaret led The Nature Conservancy’s California coastal and marine program. From 1999 to 2007, she served on Capitol Hill as senior counsel, then general counsel, to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, where she advised members of Congress on ocean and climate issues and helped develop legislation on major science and policy topics.

Margaret serves on the board of the California Ocean Science Trust, a nonprofit organization tasked with providing rigorous science to guide decisions about the future of California’s coast and ocean. She is also a founding board member of the Monterey Bay Fisheries Trust, and chair of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine’s Committee on United States Contributions to Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Margaret previously served on the Ocean Studies Board of the National Research Council from March 2014 to March 2020.

From 1992 to 1999, Margaret was an environmental attorney at Sidley & Austin in Washington, D.C. She is a graduate of Duke University Law School and Dartmouth College.

 Credit: ©Monterey Bay Aquarium, photo by Tyson V. Rininger

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