Chris Schillaci Joins Greater Atlantic Region's Aquaculture Program

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NOAA Fisheries - New England - Mid Atlantic Bulletin

January 6, 2020

Chris Schillaci Joins Greater Atlantic Region's Aquaculture Program

Chris Schillaci

In December, Chris Schillaci joined the Greater Atlantic Region's aquaculture program, bringing ten years of experience to his new role. We asked Chris a few questions as he was settling in.

What do you do in your new position as Regional Aquaculture Coordinator for the Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office?

I work with federal and state agencies, industry, and members of the scientific, academic, and NGO communities on a variety of marine aquaculture issues. Our goal is to further the development of a sustainable aquaculture industry in the Greater Atlantic Region and beyond. I join Kevin Madley in our regional office, expanding our capacity in this area.

What are you most looking forward to in your new job?

I am a problem solver. I really enjoy working in a collaborative manner with stakeholders from across sectors to come up with practical solutions to challenging problems. That kind of collaboration and coordination is really what this job is all about.

What do you think will be the biggest challenge?

The waters where marine aquaculture occurs are some of the most ecologically, culturally, and economically important shared spaces in our country. There is a high density of protected species, sensitive areas, and other user groups. This means we have an obligation to consider all of NOAA’s protection objectives and the various stakeholder viewpoints when developing strategies to foster growth in the aquaculture sector. This is critical for the long term sustainability of the industry. The good news is that through careful siting and management of aquaculture operations, we can minimize user conflict and provide sustainable economic opportunities. We can also improve water quality and bolster ecosystem services that enhance opportunities in other marine sectors.

Find out more about Chris on our website.