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Fernando Bretos

AFFILIATION: The Ocean Foundation

TITLE: Program Officer

LOCATION: Washington D.C.

LANGUAGE: English, Portuguese, Spanish

EXPERTISE AREA: Climate Change, Conservation, DEIJ, Environmental Education, Environmental Justice, Hispanic/Latine/a/o Communities, Indigenous/Native Communities, Ocean Justice, Youth, Coral Restoration


Mr. Bretos is a conservation scientist who focuses on employing nature-based solutions to restore coastal and marine habitats and assist coastal communities adapt to climate change. He is a founding member of the Trinational Initiative for Marine Science and Conservation of the Gulf of Mexico and Western Caribbean which since 2007 engages scientists and governments from Mexico, Cuba and the United States to study and protected shared marine resources. He is leading a multinational marine protected area network in the Gulf of Mexico called the Gulf of Mexico Marine Protected Area Network (Red Golfo).

As Director of the Conservation Program at Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science, he created Museum Volunteers for the Environment which since 2007 has engaged tens of thousands of Miami residents in restoring over 25 acres of coral, mangrove and dune habitat. At The Ocean Conservancy he served as Manager of its Caribbean Biodiversity Program from 1998-2003.

Born in Colombia to Cuban immigrants he grew up in Miami Beach, Florida where he spent summers snorkeling in the Florida Keys. He holds a Master’s degree from the University of Miami’s Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science and a Bachelor’s degree in biology from Oberlin College. He serves as Vice President of the Board of Trustees of SECORE International, a nonprofit organization devoted to the larval propagation of coral reefs. Fernando is a Kinship Conservation Fellow and a National Geographic Society Explorer.


Contact Fernando Bretos at

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