Meet the SOA Team

 

Daniela Fernandez

Founder and CEO

 

Daniela is an award-winning social entrepreneur, writer, and speaker on ocean technology, youth engagement, and blockchain.

She is the Founder and CEO of Sustainable Ocean Alliance (SOA), a global organization that advances the impact of youth-led social enterprises, start-ups and community projects that are developing solutions to protect and sustain our ocean.

Daniela has been recognized for her work by former U.S. Secretary John Kerry and EU Commissioner Karmenu Vella. She is a World Economic Forum Global Shaper, has been listed as Azula’s Top 5 Ocean Heroes of 2016, named one of Glamour Magazine’s 2016 Young Women of the Year and received the Peter Benchley Ocean Award. Fernandez is a contributor to National Geographic blog and Sustainable Brands, has been interviewed by Voice of America, New York City TV, Ocean Radio and has been a speaker at The Economist World Ocean Summit, United Nations, Net Impact Conference, World Ocean Festival, Collision Conference, and WE Day.

Contact: daniela@soalliance.org

Craig Dudenhoeffer

Chief Innovation Officer

 

Craig Dudenhoeffer is the co-founder of SOA’s Ocean Solutions Accelerator, where he helps entrepreneurs leverage technology to solve the ocean’s biggest problems. Prior to joining SOA, Craig worked at ReadWrite where he helped launch the world’s first Internet of Things (IoT) accelerator program. At ReadWrite, Craig worked closely with 115 early-stage technology startups from a variety of industries including healthcare, agriculture, fitness, safety, cleantech, energy, and smart cities. Before entering the technology sector, Craig worked at the National Marine Fisheries Service and studied Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of California Santa Cruz.

Contact: craig@soalliance.org

Brandon Levy

Program Director

Brandon is a community builder, systems thinker, and mission-driven professional with experience working with leading sustainable enterprises.  He is passionate about equipping youth leaders with frameworks for strategic thinking and conscious leadership, which he believes are the necessary skill sets to achieve maximum social impact and personal fulfillment. Outside of SOA, Brandon is a board member for the Young Professionals in Energy and is a mentor for StartingBloc, a fellowship program that convenes, supports, and shapes the leaders our future needs. During his tenure at the California Clean Energy Fund (CalCEF), Brandon helped manage CalSEED, a funding and professional development program for innovators and entrepreneurs working to develop early-stage clean energy concepts. Brandon recently completed an MBA at the Presidio Graduate School where he focused on market-based solutions to climate change.  In addition to the MBA, Brandon holds a B.A. in International Affairs from the George Washington University where he graduated with special honors . Brandon enjoys spending his free time listening to and creating music, philosophizing with friends, traveling to beautiful locales, playing basketball, and engaging in contemplative practices.

Contact: brandon@soalliance.org

Kate Dos Santos

Events and Corporate Partnerships Manager

 

Kate Dos Santos joins Sustainable Oceans Alliance with a background in nonprofit and private partnerships, corporate social responsibility, event management and marketing and communications. Kate’s passion lies with connecting people and ideas to create powerful environmental and social impact through her experience heading corporate social responsibility programs, partnerships and events. She is also a surfer and has a deep connection to the ocean and a relentless hunger to protect it so that future generations can experience its beauty, life and the critical resources it provides. As the Events and Corporate Partnerships Manager, Kate creates engaging and impactful events and fosters long-term partnerships to help drive solutions to the greatest threats facing the ocean.

Contact: kate@soalliance.org

Christopher Oakes

Director of Operations & Development

 

Christopher is a marine scientist and biotechnologist with an academic background in both marine biology and immunology. As a researcher he focused on life history studies of nearshore marine fishes, marine environmental monitoring, and time series analysis and spatial modeling. His graduate thesis evaluated net-cage aquaculture’s value as a fish attracting device off Catalina Island, and his side projects included morphological studies of a pharmaceutically valuable sea-snail.  In business Chris, has a passion for building teams and operations focused on molecular tools and diagnostics, robotics, and the development of fish-free feeds and biological filters using synthetic biology.  He loves kitesurfing, mountain biking, and has a passion for capturing the diversity of the underwater world through photography.

Contact: chris@soalliance.org

Alisa Futritski

Executive Assistant & Special Project Coordinator

 

Alisa Futritski comes to SOA with a background in nonprofit development and experiential education, dedicated to creating a sustainable and thriving life for our planet’s greatest asset. She is passionate about the intersection of youth leadership, community building, and ocean conservation, and she believes in creating a youth movement that will protect the blue world. After graduating from Boston University, she worked at UNESCO and Camfed to develop her knowledge of the governmental/NGO cross sectors to manifest change. A scuba diving enthusiast, she hopes to create a world in which the oceans are bustling with the life she loves so much to witness.

Contact: alisa@soalliance.org

Rachael McLellan

Communications Consultant

 

Rachael McLellan is a marine sciences graduate from California Polytechnic State University (San Luis Obispo) dedicated to bridging the communication gap between the general public and the scientific community to augment global understanding and incite actionable change towards marine conservation efforts. Raised with artistic influence, she strives to intersect the worlds of art and science and reintroduce the passion and connection often absent from ocean policy and advocacy. During her time at Cal Poly, she served as both a research assistant studying the effects of plastic pollutants on embryonic development of sea urchins, as well as an educational ocean advocate hosting marine outreach events throughout the county. More recently, she has worked as a marine mammal rehabilitator for the Marine Mammal Center, fostering sick, malnourished and injured pinnipeds for release back into the wild. She also worked as a conservation scientist for the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, working to maintain healthy stock populations of tuna, shark and schooling fish off the Pacific coast. Having seen firsthand the detrimental effects of anthropic activity during her studies and job ventures, she has joined SOA as Communications Consultant to mobilize her generation and the general public towards a more sustainable future.

Contact: rachael@soalliance.org

Tiril Stoele

Global Fellow

 

Tiril Stoele is a 21-year-old business student from Norway and is spending this summer in San Francisco for an Entrepreneurship program as a part of her master degree. She strongly believes that one of the largest current issues of the world is related to how we treat our oceans. The long coastline in Norway allows for a fishing industry that is very important for the economy and this drives her passion to keep microplastics and other waste away from our ocean and aquatic life. Tiril has a love for sea turtles and wants to help prevent wildlife from getting caught in drifting marine debris.

Contact: tiril@soalliance.org

Marcus Nickelsen

Global Fellow

 

Marcus hails from Oslo,Norway and is currently living in San Francisco for his summer internship at SOA. He has a Master of Science degree in Marine Technology from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology and is currently studying at the Norwegian School of Entrepreneurship at the University of Oslo. In his spare time, he likes to go to the gym, go on hikes, eat good food and experiment with photography.

Contact: marcus@soalliance.org