George Chamberlain to be Honored at GOAL 2022 with Lifetime Achievement Award
Global Seafood Alliance President and Founder Dr. George Chamberlain will be a recipient of this year’s Wallace R. Stevens Lifetime Achievement Award at GSA’s GOAL: The Responsible Seafood Conference in Seattle on Tuesday, Oct. 4.
A true ambassador for aquaculture and one of the world’s most respected aquaculture professionals, especially in the field of shrimp breeding and farming, Chamberlain’s career in aquaculture spans more than four decades. He began his career as a researcher and extension specialist at Texas A&M University in the United States. Later he directed aquaculture programs at Ralston Purina International and Monsanto, and he led the development of an integrated shrimp farm in Malaysia. He also served as president of the World Aquaculture Society (WAS).
It was out of that role that Chamberlain co-founded the Global Aquaculture Alliance along with a group of like-minded individuals following a WAS meeting in Seattle in February 1997. The nonprofit organization was established to act as a voice for responsible aquaculture, in response to criticism about mangrove deforestation resulting from shrimp aquaculture. He enlisted experts to gather the facts about mangrove loss and published their recommendations for conservation in a qualitative predecessor to Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) standards, “Codes of Practice for Responsible Shrimp Farming.” To enhance communication within the sector about issues and solutions, Chamberlain launched a magazine and an event, now known as the Responsible Seafood Advocate and GOAL: The Responsible Seafood Conference. He chaired the BAP Standards Oversight Committee for the first 12 years of its existence. Today, BAP is the world’s largest and most comprehensive aquaculture certification program.
During his tenure as president of GSA, Chamberlain co-founded Kona Bay, a shrimp breeding, nutrition and farming business with operations in Hawaii, Brunei and Malaysia. In 2020, Chamberlain retired from Kona Bay, continuing with GSA and taking on the additional role of leading another non-profit organization, The Center for Responsible Seafood (TCRS), which GSA helped establish to promote knowledge sharing within the seafood sector. Beginning in 2023, Chamberlain plans to reduce his role in GSA to focus more on TCRS in the coming years.
“It has been my great honor to work beside Bill Herzig, Peder Jacobson, Jim Heerin, Wally Stevens, Brian Perkins and many others at GSA. From the beginning, our handful of ‘missionaries’ had no illusions about our ability to effect change. We could only convene leaders, present the facts and leave it in their capable hands. The results have been transformative! We’ve witnessed the development of an industrywide movement, as the entire seafood value chain has proactively joined the sustainability journey. We still have far to go, and immense challenges lie ahead of us. But I’m confident that together we can continue to overcome them,” said Chamberlain.
“George was among the early visionaries 25 years ago for a global aquaculture organization. He then took the vision, founded the Global Aquaculture Alliance and is responsible for what that organization has become,” said GSA Chair Wally Stevens. “George is a bit of an aquaculture scientist, researcher, practitioner and convener. But most of all he is one of the most respected individuals in the aquaculture world. Now he moves on to his next vision, TCRS, where he will continue to serve as president. How fortunate we have been, and the best is yet to come!”
“George is known the world over for his aquaculture knowledge, particularly in regards to shrimp breeding and farming. But it’s his forward-thinking approach and abilities as a convener that have really helped move the dial on some of the key challenges and opportunities facing aquaculture and seafood in general. The industry is in a better place because of him,” said GSA CEO Brian Perkins. “It’s been a pleasure working with George over the years and in particular over the past year-and-a-half since I joined the organization.”
The Lifetime Achievement Award was established in 2004 to recognize individuals whose leadership, integrity and commitment to responsibility resulted in significant and enduring advancements in the seafood sector. The award was renamed the Wallace R. Stevens Lifetime Achievement Award in 2018 when Stevens was recognized. Past recipients were Ken Morrison, George Williams, Peder Jacobson, Li Sifa, Jonathan Shephard, I. Chiu Liao, Chingchai Lohawatanakul, Bjorn Myrseth, Donald Lightner, Nguyen Dzung, Bill Herzig, Wally Stevens, Brahmanandam Potru, and John Galiher.
John Connelly, president of the National Fisheries Institute for the past 20 years, is also a recipient of this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award and will be honored at GOAL 2022.
GOAL 2022 is being held at the Fairmont Olympic Hotel in Seattle from Oct. 3 to 6. Register here: https://register.globalseafood.org/
About the Global Seafood Alliance
The Global Seafood Alliance is an international, nonprofit trade association dedicated to advancing responsible seafood practices through education, advocacy and third-party assurances. Through the development of its Best Aquaculture Practices and Best Seafood Practices certification programs, GSA has become the leading provider of assurances for seafood globally. The organization’s work addresses the full spectrum of responsibility, from environmental responsibility and social accountability to food safety. Established in 1997 as the Global Aquaculture Alliance, GSA is headquartered in Portsmouth, N.H., USA. To learn more, visit www.globalseafood.org.