The original plan was to become an ecologist. To that end, I spent several summers traipsing along the U.S. coasts looking for invasive species. One summer I worked in the Pacific Northwest, studying the spread of a Japanese snail no bigger than a grain of rice. Another year I hung off the side of docks in New England documenting populations of two Japanese Shrimp, only to discover three other species of European Shrimp that had not yet been detected on this side of the Atlantic.
Anyone spending time on docks studying microscopic snails is apt to run into at least a few fishermen. Fishermen always know the best place to find an early morning bearclaw, and what new species have recently cropped up in their waters. They also know well the story of overfishing the oceans, and the resulting regulations that pinch their livelihoods. This is where Green Anchor was born: on a dock surrounded by tubs of fish heading to market.
We are so good at harvesting and finding uses for our native natural resources: Why can’t we do the same for invasive species? Invasive species are, after all, native to somewhere. I realized that we had to make invasive resources valuable enough to harvest, while not encouraging their spread. This system would give fishermen the ability to regain their livelihoods by temporarily catching the invasive species. Then when the invasive species was over harvested, fishermen would once again be able to catch native fish species in a rebalanced ecosystem.
To achieve this vision, I pursued two masters degrees: one in ecology and one in business. Green Anchor is the result of a solid background in science coupled with the business acumen to make this vision a reality. This venture is buoyed up by the support and insight of a strong network of stakeholders, including scientists, state agencies, partner corporations, non-profit organizations, harvesters, fishermen, educators and artists.