Expert Profile

Karen Sack

Senior Director, International Ocean
The Pew Charitable Trusts

Karen Sack joined Pew in September 2009 as director of International Ocean Conservation. She manages the international marine program which includes projects that focus on ending overfishing in Europe, conserving sharks, tunas, deep-sea life, establishing large-scale marine reserves, and combating illegal fishing.

Before joining Pew, Sack was director of Greenpeace International’s Political Unit, and before that, head of their International Oceans Campaign. In 2004, Sack was the first person from a nongovernmental organization to speak at a regular session of the United Nations General Assembly, representing the concerns of over 60 organizations from around the world over the plight of our oceans. She has led and participated in NGO delegations to the International Whaling Commission, Antarctic Treaty meetings, U.N. Conventions on Biological Diversity and Climate Change, FAO Committee on Fisheries, U.N. Oceans and the Law of the Sea meetings and the UN Fish Stocks Agreement.

Sack holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa. She also holds a master’s degree in international environmental law from the University of Cape Town in South Africa and a master’s degree in international political economy from the American University in Washington, D.C.

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News Room

September 12, 2011

Put the Brakes on Deep-Sea Fishing

A Washington Post op-ed by Pew’s International Ocean Conservation director Karen Sack. The piece focuses on the environmental and economic costs of high-seas fishing and the failure of countries engaged in these operations to take appropriate action to protect the deep sea.

June 1, 2010

Hooking the High Seas' Fishing 'Pirates'

It's time to close the net on fishing "pirates" who threaten to undermine vital marine ecosystems, says Karen Sack, who highlights the scale of the problem of illegal fishing and calls on the international community to act.

December 13, 2009

Leaders Offer Hope to End Whaling

If you thought we saved the whales in the 1980s, think again. Although supposedly rescued by a 1986 moratorium on commercial whaling, they're still struck by ships, caught in discarded nets, poisoned by pollution and harassed by the booming noise of underwater oil and gas exploration.

November 13, 2009

Did We Save the Whales? Japan Still Harvesting Thousands Annually

If you thought we saved the whales in the 1980s, think again. Although supposedly rescued by a 1986 moratorium on commercial whaling, they’re still struck by ships, caught in discarded nets, poisoned by pollution and harassed by the booming noise of underwater oil and gas exploration.

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