Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson

Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson is a marine biologist, policy expert, conservation strategist, and Brooklyn native. She is founder and president of Ocean Collectiv, a strategy consulting firm for conservation solutions. Ayana envisions and works toward a healthy ocean that supports food security, economies, and cultures. In addition to client projects, she teaches at New York University as an adjunct professor, and was a leader of the March for Science. As executive director of the Waitt Institute, Ayana co-founded the Blue Halo Initiative and led the Caribbean’s first successful island-wide ocean zoning effort. Previously, she worked on ocean policy at the EPA and NOAA, and was recently a TED resident and Aspen Institute fellow. Ayana earned a BA from Harvard University in Environmental Science and Public Policy, and a Ph.D. from Scripps Institution of Oceanography in marine biology, with a dissertation on the ecology, socio-economics, and policy of sustainably managing coral reefs. She writes about how we can use the ocean without using it up on Scientific American and National Geographic and @ayanaeliza.