|Dolphin Project . Org|
Save Japan Dolphins is a proud part of the Earth Island Institute, a non-profit, tax deductible organization founded in 1982. The Earth Island Institute has a long and active history in dolphin and whale related causes. In 1986, through the International Marine Mammal Project, EII organized a campaign to urge U.S. tuna companies to end the practice of intentionally chasing and netting dolphins with purse seine nets, and to adopt "Dolphin Safe" fishing practices to prevent the drowning of hundreds of thousands of dolphins in tuna nets every year. This campaign included consumer pressure, litigation, and revisions to the US Marine Mammal Protection Act. In 1990 a major breakthrough was achieved and the largest tuna companies in the world pledged to become dolphin-safe. Today virtually all American canned tuna has become verifiably dolphin safe. Through the International Monitoring Program, the Earth Island Institute regularly inspects tuna companies to ensure consumers that the tuna they buy is truly "dolphin safe."
Earth Island Institute's International Marine Mammal Project is also active around the world to confront the capture and trade in live dolphins, to protect whales from commercial whaling, to rescue and rehab whales and dolphins, and to engage in efforts to protect marine mammals and their habitats.
Earth Island Institute is an umbrella organization with has more than 65 projects working for the conservation, preservation, and restoration of the Earth. For more information, please visit: www.earthisland.org
Dave Phillips, Executive Director
Biologist David Phillips is Co-Executive Director of the Earth Island Institute, which he co-founded in 1982. He also directs the Institute’s International Marine Mammal Project.
David has been a non-governmental representative to numerous international marine conventions, including the International Whaling Commission, and has testified before the US Congress on marine mammal protection, endangered species conservation, and the impacts of trade on the environment. His direction of the Institute was acknowledged by the United Nations Environment Programme, which granted their Leadership Award in honor of his efforts to protect dolphins from indiscriminate fishing techniques. The Earth Island Dolphin Project's success in negotiating an agreement with the world’s largest tuna companies to adopt fully "dolphin-safe" policies was recognized by Time Magazine as one of the most significant environmental victories of the decade.
In 1995, David founded the Free Willy - Keiko Foundation, and was awarded the Joseph Wood Krutch Medal by the Humane Society of the US for his efforts on behalf of marine mammals. He has been involved in the development and implementation of numerous pieces of legislation pertaining to marine conservation, including the Dolphin Protection Consumer Information Act of 1990, the International Dolphin Conservation Act of 1992, and the Marine Mammal Protection Act.
Mark J. Palmer, Associate Director
Mark J. Palmer graduated with a BA in Zoology from the University of California at Berkeley, during which time he founded and led the Endangered Species Committee of California.
Mark has since served as Regional Vice President for the Sierra Club for Northern California and Nevada; Chairman of the Sierra Club’s National Wildlife Committee; and Chairman of the Sierra Club’s Arctic Campaign Steering Committee. He has been Executive Director of the Whale Center (1986-1990) and the Mountain Lion Foundation (1990-1995), before coming to Earth Island Institute.
Mark has more than 40 years of experience lobbying in the California State Capitol in Sacramento and in the U.S. Congress in Washington DC on wildlife and wilderness issues, as well as experience with the Japanese-American Environmental Conference, the International Whaling Commission, and the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission. He is editor of the daily newsletter ECO distributed at International Whaling Commission meetings. He was a consultant for the Academy Award winning documentary The Cove, and appears in the Animal Planet series Blood Dolphin$.
Mark Berman, Associate Director
At Earth Island Institute, Mr. Berman assists in the direction of the International Monitoring Program for Dolphin Safe tuna, supervising staff in 15 countries. He also was a founding staff for the Free Willy Keiko Foundation in 1994 with David Phillips. Mark helped lead an unprecedented, five country program to rescue, rehabilitate, and release Keiko, the star orca whale from the hit movie Free Willy.
Mark also works with the European Dolphin Safe Monitoring Organization to promote and license the registered dolphin safe logo for the canned tuna processors, retailers and importers in the EU. In addition, Mark has recently worked on campaigns to end the drive fishery of dolphins in Japan, to halt the expansion of Ocean Adventure in the Philippines and the mass capture of live dolphins in the Solomon Islands for export to marine parks worldwide.
Mary Jo Rice, Associate Director
Mary Jo is the former Executive Director of Seaflow, and she organized the North American Ocean Noise Coalition, bringing together more than a dozen national and regional environmental organizations to collaboratively address ocean noise pollution issues. She has also led a major open space acquisition effort in Marin County, which won her the designation of “Environmental Hero” in Barry Spitz’s book, Open Spaces. For her successful leadership roles in various environmental campaigns, particularly in protecting ocean life, she received the 2006 Resource Conservation Award from the Sierra Club’s Marin Chapter.
Mary Jo received a B.S. degree from Case Western Reserve University in 1974, graduating summa cum laude. She and her husband live at the edge of open space in the Marin County, CA hills, where they raised their two children.
Laura Bridgeman, Program Associate
Since 1982, Earth Island Institute has been a hub for grassroots campaigns dedicated to conserving, preserving, and restoring the ecosystems on which our civilization depends.
Our Project Support program acts as an incubator for start-up environmental projects, giving crucial assistance to groups and individuals with new ideas for promoting ecological sustainability. Since our founding, we have provided fiscal sponsorship to more than 100 projects around the globe.
In addition to our project support work, we also inform and inspire people to take action through our award-winning quarterly magazine, Earth Island Journal, our New Leaders Initiative, and our Restoration Initiative. TheJournal balances investigative exposés with inspiring stories of change, giving people the information they need be effective environmental activists. Our New Leaders Initiative hosts the annual Brower Youth Awards, which highlights the amazing accomplishments of young people working for sustainability and provides emerging leaders with mentoring resources. Our Restoration Initiatives funds community-based coastal protection and wetland restoration efforts in Southern California.
By sharing resources, Earth Island’s network of grassroots leaders benefit from the synergistic exchange of experience and ideas, making its members more effective together than they could ever be apart. We currently serve as the fiscal sponsor for more than 40 groups, including Baikal Watch, Energy Action, Ethical Traveler, Fiji Organic Project, International Marine Mammal Project, Reef Protection International, Sacred Land Film Project, and Women’s Earth Alliance, among others. Successful Earth Island Institute alumni projects include International Rivers, Rainforest Action Network, and Bluewater Network.
Our model for assisting campaigns addresses one of the environmental movement’s historical barriers to success — that large non-profit organizations typically set their agendas far in advance, and thus are slow to respond to urgent, emerging issues. Creating new organizations for each campaign is impractical, because the time and effort detracts from achieving immediate goals.
Earth Island Institute was founded in 1982 by legendary environmentalistDavid R. Brower as an innovative solution to this dilemma. Rather than create dozens of separate non-profit groups with the same basic administrative needs, Earth Island acts as an umbrella organization, providing individual projects with the freedom to develop new initiatives by offering a wide range of professional services, from fiscal administration and program management to office space and equipment.
By serving as a support system for creative individuals, we are helping to grow environmental success. Our sponsored projects address many of the world’s most pressing environmental and social issues and work toward a sustainable future through a combination of education and activism — informing decision-makers, the media, and the general public about global threats and opportunities; developing constituencies to respond to them; and providing ordinary citizens with opportunities to get involved, take action, and make a difference.
Through assisting “early stage” leaders — from moms seeking a healthy future for their children to community activists figuring out how to restore their local wetlands — we fill a crucial role in the citizen movement for a sustainable future.