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avatar for Aulani Wilhelm

Aulani Wilhelm

Senior Vice President for Oceans at Conservation International

Aulani Wilhelm is a native Hawaiian born on the island of Maui and raised primarily on the island of Oʻahu. For more than 20 years she has worked culture, community, and science to emerge innovations in ocean conservation. She has played a pivotal role in shaping the emerging field of large-scale ocean conservation, leading the design and establishment of the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument in Hawaiʻi, and as founder of Big Ocean, a network of the world’s largest marine managed areas which collectively protect >16million km2of ocean globally. She is currently the Senior Vice President for Oceans at Conservation International. Prior to joining Conservation International, she was Director of Ocean Initiatives for NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, and a Social Innovation Fellow at Stanford University. She founded Island Water, a social venture to provide clean water and reduce plastic pollution on islands, and the Design4Nature Collective, a network of professionals trained in methods of design thinking who modify and apply those methods to problem solving for nature. She is also a long-time volunteer and crew member of the Hawaiian voyaging canoe Hōkūleʻa.  She holds an MS from Stanford University and BA from the University of Southern California.


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