october 16 - october 21 // 2022
Robert L. Brownell, Jr.
Senior Scientist, International Protected Resources,
NOAA - Southwest Fisheries Science Center
Bob Brownell has conducted research on the biology and conservation of whales, dolphins and porpoises throughout the world with major studies in Mexico, southern South America, Japan, and Russia. He has published over 300 scientific papers, book chapters, and management documents on various aspects of whale, dolphin, and porpoise biology, conservation, and management. He has been a member of the U. S. delegation to the Scientific Committee of the International Whaling Commission (IWC) since 1975 and served as Vice-Chair and Chair of the IWC’s Scientific Committee. He was President of the Society for Marine Mammalogy from 1987 to 1989.
Before joining NOAA, Bob served as the Chief of Marine Mammal Research for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service from the late 1970s to 1991. Between 1991 and 1993, he was the Science Advisor to the Assistant Secretary of State for Oceans and International Environmental & Scientific Affairs. While at the State Department, Bob worked to uncover massive illegal commercial whaling activities by the Soviets and the UN High Seas Driftnet Moratorium of 1991. In 1993, Bob became the Director of the Marine Mammal Division at the SWFSC in La Jolla, California, and then took up his present position here on the Monterey Peninsula in 2002. He has also been a member of the various marine mammal specialist groups under the IUCN (The World Conservation Union) since the 1970s and has served several times as a Scientific Advisor to the U.S. Marine Mammal Commission.
Recently Bob has been one of the principal scientific advisors from The Important Marine Mammal Areas (IMMAs) initiative launched by the Marine Mammal Protected Task Force of the IUCN in 2016 as a response to a conservation crisis in the protection of marine mammals and wider global ocean biodiversity.