David Wilmot is the President and Co-Founder of Ocean Champions -- to which he brings over thirty years of experience in ocean science, environmental policy, non-profit governance and fundraising, and political advocacy.
David received his MS and BS from the University of Georgia, where he also co-founded Students for Environmental Awareness. David then traveled to the west coast to study the recently discovered deep-sea hydrothermal vents and received his PhD in marine biology from Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego.
David continued his environmental work while at Scripps (working with two fellow graduate students to ban Styrofoam on campus and local beaches), and it became clear that his passion was advocacy. A National Sea Grant Marine Policy Fellowship at the National Research Council’s Ocean Studies Board helped David better understand ocean policy and the workings of Washington, D.C.
Next came the jump to advocacy with service as the Executive Director of the Ocean Wildlife Campaign (OWC) where, for eight years, he worked to build this coalition of six national and international organizations into the leading voice for the conservation of large ocean fishes. David has authored or co-authored numerous ocean science and conservation articles.
David lives with his wife and two boys in the Santa Cruz area where they spend lots of time on and in the ocean. When he is not enjoying the ocean, or remodeling his house, David trains in the martial arts and has earned the rank of black belt in Shorinji-Ryu Karate-Do.