Ocean Champions is the only political voice for ocean health. We take a non-partisan approach in working with
the U.S. Congress to ensure ocean health through electoral and legislative action.

Ocean Champions

110th Congress

Ocean Champions, 501(c)(4), with an attached political action committee (PAC), is the first-ever political advocacy organization dedicated to conserving the ocean and its wildlife.   Ocean Champions is focused on building champions for ocean conservation in the U.S. Congress.  Read about the members of Congress, endorsed by Ocean Champions, who are currently serving in the U.S. Congress.

House of Representatives

Rep. Tom Allen

Key Coastal Communities: Portland

Party: Democratic

Term: 6th

Key Committees: Energy and Commerce (As Rep. of Maine District 1)

Caucuses: Co-Chair

Leadership: Rep. Allen has been a true leader in protecting the oceans. As Co-Chair of both the House Oceans Caucus & House Coastal Caucus_es, this six term representative of Maine's 1st district was instrumental in the reauthorization of the Magnuson-Stevens Act. In support of our oceans, he has introduced legislation to create a national ocean observing system, H.R. 2342 (National Integrated Coastal and Ocean Observation Act of 2008) and H.R. 4174 (Federal Ocean Acidification Research And Monitoring Act of 2007 or "FOARAM Act") He is an original co-sponsor of both H.R. 21 ("Oceans 21"), and H.R 1091 (Save Our Shores Act). We are confident that as a Senator from Maine, Tom Allen will provide continued strong leadership on critical ocean issues.

Websites: ,

Rep. John Barrow

District: Georgia 12th

Key Coastal Communities: Savannah

Party: Democratic

Terms: 2nd

Key Committees: Agriculture

Caucuses: House Oceans Caucus

Leadership: Rep. Barrow has been a long-time clean-water advocate since his days as a Clarke County/Athens Commissioner. Upon being elected, he was one of the first Democratic co-sponsors of H.R. 1431, (Fisheries Science and Management Enhancement Act of 2005). Today he continues to support important ocean legislation by co-sponsoring both H.R. 21 ("Oceans 21") and H.R 1747 (Safe Drinking Water for Healthy Communities Act of 2007).

Websites: www.barrowforcongress.com,

 

Rep. Lois Capps

Key Coastal Communities: Santa Barbara

Party: Democratic

Terms: 6th

Key Committees: Natural Resources, Energy & Commerce

Caucuses: House Oceans Caucus & House Coastal Caucus

Leadership: Rep. Capps has consistently fought to uphold the moratorium on new offshore oil & gas drilling and was the lead Democratic sponsor of the June 2007 bill, H.R. 2918 (California Ocean and Coastal Protection Act), to extend the moratorium. Rep. Capps is a passionate supporter of the National Marine Sanctuary Program, and supports fisheries conservation and management.

Rep. Capps is an original co-sponsor of:

  1. H.R. 4174 (Federal Ocean Acidification Research And Monitoring Act of 2007 or "FOARAM Act")
  2. H.R. 6434. (Clean Cruise Ship Act of 2008)
  3. H.R. 1907 (Coastal and Estuarine Land Protection Act)

Rep. Capps co-sponsors the following legislation:

  1. H.R. 21 ("Oceans-21")
  2. H.R. 2342 (National Integrated Coastal and Ocean Observation Act of 2008)
  3. H.R. 1187 (Gulf of the Farallones and Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuaries Boundary Modification and Protection Act)
  4. H.R. 2537 (Beach Protection Act of 2008)

Websites: , www.loiscapps.org

Rep. Cathy Castor

District: Florida 11th

Key Coastal Communities: Tampa

Party: Democratic

Terms: 1st

Key Committees: Rules

Caucuses: N/A

Leadership: As a member of the Hillsborough County Commission, worked tirelessly to protect endangered coastal wetlands. In Congress she continues this fight by supporting a healthy environment and clean water. As one of her first acts in Congress, Rep. Castor introduced H.R 1091 (Save Our Shores Act), which addresses the ever worsening problem of harmful algal blooms (in particular, "red tides"), which impact fisheries, recreation and tourism, and human health. As an outspoken opponent of efforts to lift the moratorium on offshore drilling, in April she introduced H.R. 5861 (Florida Coastal Protection Act).

Rep. Castor is a co-sponsor of: H.R. 21 ("Oceans-21"), H.R. 1187 (Gulf of the Farallones and Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuaries Boundary Modification and Protection Act) and other important ocean legislation.

Websites: www.castorforcongress.com, castor.house.gov

Rep. Sam Farr                                                           

District: California 17th

Key Coastal Communities: Monterey & Santa Cruz

Party: Democratic

Terms: 8th

Key Committees: Appropriations

Caucuses: Co-Chair & Founder, House Oceans Caucus

Leadership: As the lead author and tireless champion of a truly visionary piece of legislation - H.R. 21, the Oceans Conservation, Education, and National Strategy for the 21st Century Act ("OCEANS 21") - Rep. Farr has shown his commitment to healthy oceans, and his leadership skills. Oceans-21 would implement key recommendations of the Pew Oceans Commission and U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy with common-sense solutions. Rep. Farr also introduced H.R. 6434. (Clean Cruise Ship Act of 2008) and is a co-sponsor of H.R 1091 (Save Our Shores Act).

He has added his support to other important ocean legislation by co-sponsoring the following bills:

  1. H.R. 2918 (California Ocean and Coastal Protection Act),
  2. H.R. 2342 (National Integrated Coastal and Ocean Observation Act of 2008)
  3. H.R. 4174 (Federal Ocean Acidification Research And Monitoring Act of 2007 or "FOARAM Act")
  4. H.R. 1187 (Gulf of the Farallones and Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuaries Boundary Modification and Protection Act)
  5. H.R. 1907 (Coastal and Estuarine Land Protection Act)

Websites: ,

Rep. Wayne Gilchrest

Key Coastal Communities: Eastern Shore

Term: 9th

Key Committees: Natural Resources (Fisheries & Oceans Subcommittee), Transportation (Coast Guard & Maritime Transportation, and Water Resources & the Environment Subcommittees)

Caucuses: Co-Chair, House Oceans Caucus; House Coastal Caucus

Leadership: Rep. Gilchrest has long placed conservation of our ocean resources as one of his top Congressional priorities. He was a key player in the passage of the Sustainable Fisheries Act of 1996, and again played a leading role in pushing through a strong reauthorization of the Magnuson-Stevens Act in 2006.  He is also a cosponsor of the 2007 Save Our Shores Act.

Websites: , http://www.gilchrest.org/

Rep. Connie Mack IV

District: Florida 14th

Key Coastal Communities: Naples & Ft. Meyers

Party: Republican

Terms: 2nd

Key Committees: Budget; Transportation (Coast Guard & Maritime Transportation and Water Resources & Environment subcommittees)

Caucuses: House Oceans Caucus; House Coastal Caucus

Leadership: Rep. Mack is a strong supporter of legislation to protect clean water and beaches and to provide more and better science to understand harmful algal blooms including "red tides." Rep. Mack authored H.R. 1091 (Save Our Shores Act) and on July 11, 2008 testified before the Subcommittee on Energy and the Environment on his Save Our Shores Act, stating that "this is not a Republican or Democratic matter, rather, it is one that affects the health of our entire nation." Rep. Mack was an early co-sponsor of the reauthorization of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, which helped build bipartisan support for a critically important bill that passed Congress and was signed into law in 2006. _

Websites: ,

Rep. Ed Markey

District: Massachusetts 7

Key Coastal Communities: Boston area

Party: Democratic

Terms: 17th

Key Committees: Natural Resources

Caucuses: House Oceans Caucus & House Coastal Caucus

Leadership: Rep. Markey has served on the important Resources Committee for his entire 30 year career in Congress, and has been a consistent supporter of ocean protection legislation during that time, playing a key role in the passage of the Sustainable Fisheries Act of 1996. Rep. Markey has also long been active on energy issues and was selected by Speaker Pelosi as chairman of the new House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming. Rep. Markey is a_ cosponsor of H.R. 21 ("Oceans 21"), and H.R. 1187 (Gulf of the Farallones and Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuaries Boundary Modification and Protection Act).

Websites: , www.edmarkey.org

Rep. Frank Pallone, Jr.

District: New Jersey 6th

Key Coastal Communities: Long Branch

Party: Democratic

Terms: 10th

Key Committees: Natural Resources (Fisheries, Wildlife & Oceans Subcommittee)

Caucuses: Co-Chair & Founder, House Coastal Caucus; House Oceans Caucus

Leadership: Rep. Pallone has continued to fight to improve not just his home state’s beaches, but those of the nation, by introducing and promoting H.R. 2537 (Beach Protection Act of 2008) and in the past has fought against indiscriminate offshore drilling with bills such as H.R.777 (COAST Anti-Drilling Act in January 2007) and has called for detailed explanations from those who claim we need to drill now. Pallone introduced H.R 2939 (Atlantic Blackfish Conservation Act) and a related bill, H.R. 2625 designed to protect the Atlantic’s fish population. Rep. Pallone’s ocean leadership also extends to support of such important legislation as H.R. 5741 (Shark Conservation Act of 2008), H.R. 6537 (Sanctuary Enhancement Act of 2008), H.R. 1205 (Coral Reef Conservation Amendments Act of 2007), H.R. 1834 (National Ocean Exploration Program Act) and H.R. 2342 (National Integrated Coastal and Ocean Observation Act of 2008). He has played a key role in some of the most important oceans legislation of the last ten years.

Websites: ,

Rep. Jim Saxton

Key Coastal Communities: Ocean County (Long Beach Island)

Term: 12th

Key Committees: Natural Resources (Fisheries, Wildlife & Oceans Subcommittee)

Caucuses: Co-Chair, House Oceans Caucus; House Coastal Caucus

Leadership: Lead sponsor of the Oceans Act of 2000, which created the U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy. Consistent opponent of efforts to lift the moratorium on offshore drilling. Leader on fisheries conservation issues.  He is also a cosponsor of the 2007 Save Our Shores Act.

Websites: , http://www.jimsaxton.com/

Rep. Chris Shays

District: Connecticut 4th

Key Coastal Communities: Bridgeport

Party: Republican

Terms: 11th

Key Committees: Government Reform (Vice-Chair)

Caucuses: House Oceans Caucus & House Coastal Caucus

Leadership: Rep. Shays has been one of the most consistent voices in Congress for protecting the environment generally and the oceans in particular. He was the lead Republican sponsor of the Clean Cruise Ships Act of 2004, and has been an original co-sponsor of two bills to reauthorize and reform the Magnuson-Stevens Act. Rep. Shays is an original cosponsor of the Ocean Conservation, Education and National Strategy Act for the 21st Century ("Oceans 21"), as well as H.R. 1907 (Coastal and Estuarine Land Protection Act).

Quote from website: "I believe protecting and preserving our environment is one of the most important duties Congress has. We simply won't have a world to live in if we continue our neglectful ways."

Websites: , www.shaysforcongress.org

Rep. Hilda Solis

District: California 32nd

Key Coastal Communities: Los Angeles

Party: Democratic

Terms: 4th

Key Committees: Energy & Commerce, Natural Resources

Caucuses: House Coastal Caucus

Leadership: Rep. Solis is a committed clean-water advocate, and has consistently voted to uphold the moratorium on new offshore oil & gas drilling. She has introduced H.R 1747 (Safe Drinking Water for Healthy Communities Act of 2007) and is an original co-sponsor of H.R. 2918 (California Ocean and Coastal Protection Act_) as well as co-sponsor of both H.R. 21 ("Oceans 21":) and H.R. 2342 (National Integrated Coastal and Ocean Observation Act of 2008).

Websites: , www.hildasolis.org

U.S. Senate

Sen. Barbara Boxer

Term:  3rd

Key Committees:  Environment and Public Works (Chair); Commerce, Science, and Transportation (Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and Coast Guard Subcommittee)

Leadership:  Keenly aware of the importance of healthy coasts and oceans to the economy and lifestyles of California, Sen. Barbara Boxer is an acknowledged leader in protecting ocean ecosystems. Senator Boxer has been a steadfast opponent of oil and gas development off the California coast, repeatedly blocking such efforts.  She is currently working to reintroduce legislation that will implement many of the recommendations of the Pew Oceans Commission and U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy.

Websites:  ,  http://www.barbaraboxer.com/

Sen. Maria Cantwell

Term: 2nd

Key Committees: Commerce, Science & Transportation; Energy & Natural Resources (Chair: Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, & Coast Guard Subcommittee)

Leadership:  Sen. Cantwell is one of the most outspoken defenders of the environment in Congress, and she has consistently voted in favor of protections for the oceans.  Most recently, she carried on a high-profile and successful battle with Sen. Stevens over a proposal to allow new oil tanker traffic in Puget Sound. 

Websites: http://cantwell.senate.gov/http://www.cantwell.com/

Sen. Judd Gregg

Term:  3rd

Key Committees: Appropriations; Budget (Ranking Member)

Leadership:  Sen. Judd Gregg of New Hampshire has played an important part in ensuring that our oceans and coasts are well managed.  Sen. Gregg has repeatedly fought back attempts to reduce the budget of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), which has primary jurisdiction on most ocean management issues.  Sen. Gregg has gotten increasingly involved in substantive policy issues as well, and introduced legislation, which would address key recommendations of the Pew Oceans Commission.

Websites: 

Sen. Richard Lugar

Term: 6th

Key Committees:  Foreign Relations (Ranking Member), Agriculture

Leadership:  As former Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, Sen. Lugar has been the foremost advocate for adoption of the Law of the Sea Treaty, which is vitally important for conserving oceans in international waters.  Sen. Lugar’s continued leadership has helped break the logjam on this treaty in the Senate.

Websites:

Sen. Bill Nelson

Term: 2nd

Key Committees:  Commerce, Science & Transportation (Subcommittee Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, & Coast Guard), Budget

Leadership:  Sen. Nelson led the charge in the Senate against repeal of the moratorium on offshore drilling, and helped engineer a compromise on a Gulf drilling bill, passed in the Senate, that will permanently protect the vast majority of Florida’s coast from new drilling.

Websites: ,

Sen. Olympia Snowe

Term: 3rd

Key Committees:  Commerce, Science & Transportation (Ranking Member, Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries & Coast Guard Subcommittee)

Leadership: Sen. Snowe continues to hold an important position on the Oceans Subcommittee for passage of fisheries legislation, and she used that assignment to help shepherd through the Senate a reauthorization of the Magnuson-Stevens Act. 

Websites:,

Global Warming

Global Warming Facts

Insight into Warming (npr.org)

Oceana

Ocean News from Around the Web

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