U.S. Commerce Department Secretary Penny Pritzker recently announced the appointment of 30 new and returning members to the eight regional fishery management councils that partner with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Fisheries to manage ocean fish stocks.
On the recommendation and nomination of Governor Andrew Cuomo, and with the support of New York State Senator Charles Schumer, Kingsborough Community College Maritime Technology Program Director Prof. Anthony DiLernia was reappointed—in a very competitive process—to an unprecedented sixth term as an At-Large Member on the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council. The Mid-Atlantic region includes members from the states of Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Virginia.
“It’s a feather in the cap of Kingsborough to have its own Prof. DiLernia as a member of this council; he is among the more knowledgeable fisheries experts around,” said KCC President Farley Herzek. “His expertise and understanding of sustainability, and maintenance of fishing stocks has been recognized by both the Governor Cuomo and Senator Schumer, and underscores why his re-appointment to a sixth term is unprecedented. We look forward to learning more about how his work impacts our community.”
The councils were established by the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act to prepare fishery management plans for marine fish stocks in their regions. NOAA Fisheries works closely with the councils as plans are developed, and then reviews, approves and implements the fishery management plans. Council members represent diverse groups, including commercial and recreational fishing industries, environmental organizations, and academia. The councils are vital to fulfilling the act’s requirements to end overfishing, rebuild fish stocks, and manage them sustainably.
“The demand for seafood and recreational fishing opportunities in the United States continues to increase,” said council member DiLernia. “Domestic production of seafood is unable to keep up with demand, and as a result, 90 percent of the seafood consumed in the U.S. is imported. I’m delighted to return to the council, and to continue serving our nation’s needs by finding ways of increasing domestic production in an environmentally sustainable manner.”
Each year, the Secretary of Commerce appoints approximately one-third of the total 72 appointed members to the eight regional councils. The Secretary selects members from nominations submitted by the governors of fishing states, territories, and tribal governments. NOAA’s mission is to understand and predict changes in the Earth’s environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and to conserve and manage coastal and marine resources. Council members are appointed to both obligatory (state-specific) and at-large (regional) seats. Council members serve a three-year term and can be reappointed to serve three consecutive terms. The new and reappointed council members begin their three-year terms on August 11.
“U.S. fisheries are among the most sustainable in the world, and NOAA Fisheries is grateful for the efforts individuals like Anthony DiLernia devote to our nation’s fisheries management and to the resiliency of our oceans. We look forward to working with both new and returning council members,” said NOAA Fisheries Assistant Administrator Eileen Sobeck. “Each council faces unique challenges, and their partnerships with us at NOAA Fisheries are integral to the sustainability of the fisheries in their respective regions, as well as to the communities that rely on those fisheries.”
As Maritime Technology Program Director and a charter boat operator with 35 years of experience in the Mid-Atlantic region, Prof. DiLernia—also an occasional outdoors writer—has directed one of the most successful community college Maritime Technology programs for more than a decade. Approximately 100 students are enrolled in KCC’s Maritime Technology program in a range of deck and engine classes on such topics as steamship piloting, marine electronics, welding, low-voltage electrical systems, safety and survival, marina operations, oceanography, and vessel repair.
About Kingsborough Community College
Kingsborough Community College serves approximately 14,000 full- and part-time students a year in credit and non-credit bearing courses in liberal arts and career education. As one of the City University of New York’s seven community colleges, Kingsborough provides a high-quality education through associate degree programs that prepare students for transfer to senior colleges or entry into professional careers, and is dedicated to promoting student learning and development as well as strengthening and serving its diverse community.
Dawn S. Walker (917) 588-6305
Mike Goldstein (718) 368-5666