Commerce Department appoints 22 members to fishery management councils

WASHINGTON, D.C.—The eight regional fishery management councils have 22 new and returning members, it was announced in late June. Staff with the Commerce Department released a statement announcing the appointments for each regional council; each council is a partner with NOAA Fisheries “to manage marine fishery resources,” according to the announcement.

The regional fishery management councils were created by the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act and are tasked with “developing region-specific fishery management plans that safeguard and enhance the nation’s fisheries resources,” according to the NOAA Fisheries statement.

There are 72 total members serving on all eight councils. The Secretary of Commerce appoints about one-third of the membership each year. Nominations come in from governors of fishing states, territories and tribal governments.

Council members are appointed to three-year terms and can be reappointed to three consecutive terms.

“Council members represent diverse groups, including commercial and recreational fishing industries, environmental organizations, and academia. They are vital to fulfilling the act’s requirements to end overfishing, rebuild fish stocks, and manage them sustainably,” NOAA Fisheries staff said in a released statement about the appointees. “NOAA Fisheries works closely with the councils through the process of developing fishery management plans. We also review, approve, and implement the plans.”

Here is the list of appointees:

Pacific Council (California, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington)

Obligatory seat:

Butch Smith (Washington)

At-large seat:

Bradley Pettinger (Oregon)


New England Council (Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island)
At-large seats:

Alan Tracy (Maine)

Elizabeth Etrie (Massachusetts)

John Pappalardo (Massachusetts)

Daniel Salerno (New Hampshire)

Mid-Atlantic Council (Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Virginia)
Obligatory seat:

Earl Gwin (Maryland)

Dewey Hemilright (North Carolina)

Paul Risi (New York)

Michelle Duval (Pennsylvania)

At-large seats:

Danny Farnham (New York)

South Atlantic Council (Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina)
At-large seats:

Chester Brewer (Florida)

Kerry Marhefka (South Carolina)

Caribbean Council (Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands)
Obligatory seat:

Marcos Hanke (Puerto Rico)


Gulf Council (Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas)

At-large seat:

Robert Shipp (Alabama)

Phillip Dyskow (Florida)

Gregory Stunz (Texas)

North Pacific Council (Alaska and Washington)

Obligatory seats:

Simon Kineen (Alaska)

Kenneth Down (Washington)

Western Pacific Council (American Samoa, Guam, Hawai’i, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands)

Obligatory seat:

John Gourley (Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands)

At-large seats:

McGrew Rice (Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands)

Roger Dang (Hawai’i)

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