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May 7, 2003 News Release

National Academy of Sciences’ Morgan Gopnik
Joins U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy
as Senior Advisor

Schaff Departs Commission
for Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Washington, D.C – Morgan Gopnik of Washington, D.C., has been appointed Senior Advisor to the U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy, a congressionally authorized and presidentially appointed commission charged with developing recommendations for a new, comprehensive national ocean policy.

“The Commission is pleased to welcome Morgan to the staff at the U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy,” said Commission Chairman Retired Navy Admiral James D. Watkins. “She brings a wealth of experience and an exceptionally strong background in ocean and coastal-related science, management, engineering and policy issues. Her experience will prove invaluable as the Commission develops recommendations for a new national ocean policy.”

In her role as senior advisor, Gopnik will be responsible for a broad portfolio of marine policy issues on which her guidance and counsel will be sought by the chairman and other members of the Commission. She also will play a major role in the development of the report due to Congress and the President later this year.

Gopnik comes to the Commission on loan from the National Academy of Sciences where she has served for seven years as the Director of the Ocean Studies Board. As director, she was responsible for advising the Federal government on numerous ocean and coastal-related issues. Prior to that, Gopnik served as Assistant Director of the National Academy of Sciences’ Commission on Geosciences, Environment and Resources. Previously, she was a consultant to the Environmental Protection Agency and worked at numerous non-profit environmental associations.
In other staff changes, Terry Schaff, formerly the Associate Director for Government Relations and Associate Director for Investment and Implementation for the Commission, is now the Director of Government Relations for the Massachusetts-based Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.

“Terry has played a critical role at the Commission since its inception, and his expertise and counsel will be greatly missed,” said Watkins. “We wish him all the best in his new endeavor with one of the world’s premier oceanographic institutions.”

The U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy, which was established in 2001, recently held its 15th public meeting in Washington, D.C. Based on expert testimony from top ocean scientists, environmental organizations, industry, citizens and government officials, the Commission is developing recommendations for a new and comprehensive national ocean policy. The Commission’s report is due to be delivered to the President and Congress in 2003. Commission milestones include the release of the mid-term report, Developing a National Ocean Policy, in September 2002. The preliminary report stated that the nation’s oceans and coasts are in serious trouble.

For more information on the U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy go to:


Kate Naughten, (202) 418-3442
David Roscow, (703) 276-2772 ext 21



Revised May 09, 2003 by Ocean Commission Webmaster
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