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Dona Bertarelli

Professional affiliation

Philanthropist, UN Advisor, and Champion for the Ocean

Full Biography

Dona Bertarelli is Special Advisor for the Blue Economy for the U.N. Conference on Trade and Development, a Patron of Nature of the International Union for Conservation of Nature, and co-chair of the Bertarelli Foundation. She is a philanthropist, ocean conservation advocate, and entrepreneur as well as the fastest woman to sail around the world.

Over more than a decade, she has contributed to the creation of ecologically significant, large-scale marine protected areas through the Bertarelli Foundation and through the Pew Bertarelli Ocean Legacy project, which she founded with The Pew Charitable Trusts in 2017. As a natural progression in ocean conservation, she is now advocating for the connectivity of marine protected areas, to help conserve key migratory species and entire marine ecosystems for the benefit of the communities that rely on the ocean for their livelihoods.

Among other regions, the project focuses on connectivity in the Eastern Tropical Pacific Seascape—located along the coasts of Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, and Ecuador. Ms. Bertarelli also founded Global Fishing Watch Marine Manager, a dynamic technology portal to help transform the management, monitoring, and enforcement of marine reserves. Together with her family, Ms. Bertarelli is committed to ensuring a sustainable balance between nature and people. The goal of their organization, Sails of Change, is to raise awareness about the global goal of protecting at least 30 percent of ocean and land by 2030—a critical target defined by scientists to avoid the worst impacts of climate change.