Aquaculture for the Economy and Ecosystem

Second Annual Webinar Series focused on Aquaculture


The Blue + Green 2022 webinar series will include 4 one-hour webinars scheduled Thursdays from June 2, 2022 – June 23, 2022 at 4 pm.  The goal of the project is to shine a spotlight on emerging aquaculture sector in our economy.  Aquaculture and the supporting technologies bring together all the key ingredients – future growth opportunities that support our coastal ecosystems, the economy, jobs, and our communities.  This webinar series reimagines partnerships between business, government, universities, and communities through regenerative ocean research, exploration, and equity-based economic development.


Meredith Brooks– Strategic Grants and Special Projects Manager, Consultant AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles

Dorothy Cardenas – Project Coordinator, AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles

Ferris Kawar – Sustainability Project Manager, Santa Monica College

Michael H. Kelly – Executive Director, The Los Angeles Coalition for the Economy & Jobs

Jenny C. Krusoe – Founding Executive Director, AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles

Janet E. Kübler, Ph.D. – Biology Department, California State University Northridge

Natale A. Zappia, Ph.D. – Director, Institute for Sustainability, Associate Professor, Department of History, California State University, Northridge


AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles is dedicated to accelerating scientific collaboration, advancing an emerging blue economy through business innovation and job creation, and inspiring the next generation, all for a more sustainable, just, and equitable world.

Founded in 2008, the Institute for Sustainability works with stakeholders across campus to integrate sustainability into all aspects of the university from operations and infrastructure to outreach, education, and research. The Institute serves all the colleges of the university, working to increase interdisciplinary and cross-functional communication, education, and research on sustainability.

The Los Angeles Coalition for the Economy & Jobs (The L.A. Coalition) is an independent, bipartisan membership organization, established in 2009, to bring together leaders from the region’s business, labor, academic and nonprofit communities to advance sound policy initiatives that will help to responsibly grow the economy and create quality jobs throughout the L.A. region.

Santa Monica College is a two-year community college accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. It opened in 1929 with just 153 students and has now grown to a thriving campus with more than 32,000 students and offerings in more than 100 fields of study. SMC is the leader among the state’s 116 community colleges in transferring students to the University of California, University of Southern California, Loyola Marymount University, and other four-year campuses.


Session 1: Seaweed Startups – Growing a Crop-Based Business

Thursday, June 2, 2022 at 4:00 PM



Julia Marsh, Sway

Co-founder and CEO of Sway, a venture-backed materials company producing packaging made from seaweed. Julia is an interdisciplinary designer by trade, with over a decade spent building brand and packaging systems for consumer goods companies, technology startups, and design studios. Her career as a designer has been inspired by a lifelong affection for the ocean and the belief that designers must take part in solving the planet’s greatest challenges.

Sway is currently developing and scaling high-performance, home compostable, seaweed-based packaging. Sway packaging integrates seamlessly into existing plastic infrastructure, while simultaneously replenishing ocean health, sequestering carbon, and catalyzing a more inclusive environmental movement through regenerative design. In 2022, Sway was announced as a finalist in the Tom Ford Plastic Innovation Prize. In 2021, Sway was named as a winner of the Beyond the Bag Challenge, sponsored by Closed Loop Partners and a consortium of global retailers. Sway’s innovative work has been featured in publications including Vogue, Forbes, and Fast Company. The company is a member of the Sustainable Packaging Coalition, the Sustainable Ocean Alliance, and 1% for the Planet.

Pat Schnettler, 12 Tides

Pat is a co-founder of 12 Tides and an ocean-enthusiast and conservationist. He founded 12 Tides after working in traditional seafood industries as a way to foster a more positive connection between our food system and the oceans. He is a rescue certified scuba diver and has been known to eat kelp straight out of the sea.

Ashlan Cousteau, SeaWeed Naturals

Journalist and Explorer Ashlan Gorse Cousteau travels the world in search of stories that captivate and inspire.  As a host, speaker, author and filmmaker, Cousteau uses the power of entertainment to save the world. As a social entrepreneur, Ashlan is the principal founder of SeaWeed Naturals, a first-of-its-kind wellness lifestyle brand, that is creating products that bring customers the established benefits of the cannabis plant, combined with the countless powerful effects of marine botanicals like algae and seaweed. Ashlan’s first book, Oceans for Dummies (Wiley Publishing), is a fun and easy to understand book explaining the entire ocean; its ecosystems, history, climate, currents, species and more, February 2021. Ashlan was the co-star of Travel Channel’s award-winning series, Caribbean Pirate Treasure for three seasons.  Her documentary, Nuclear Sharks, for Discovery Channel’s Shark Week 2016 premiered as the #1 rated show across all cable programming.  For over a decade, Ashlan worked as an on-camera correspondent and co-host for Emmy award winning entertainment shows E! News and Entertainment Tonight.

Cousteau’s endeavors go beyond the small screen.  Ashlan traveled to Antarctica to be a headlining speaker at TedxScottBase.  She has served as host for the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity and was selected by former Vice-President Al Gore to be the opening anchor for 24Hours of Reality. She is a voice for environmental issues on Capitol Hill through events, and briefings and serves on the advisory board of WWF, Ocean Unite and the Environmental Media Association. Ashlan graduated from the prestigious School of Journalism at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, daughter, rescue dog, and two chickens and has explored all seven continents.


Ann Carpenter, Braid Theory

Ann Carpenter is dedicated to building and fostering the global Blue Economy entrepreneur ecosystem. She serves as an advisor to deep tech companies in ocean/maritime, transportation and goods movement, and related industrial sectors. She brings more than 30 years of experience in strategic planning, marketing, business development, and community outreach. As co-founder and CEO of Braid Theory, a vertically integrated venture advisory, Ms. Carpenter is responsible for strategic partnership building with ports, public agencies, and private industry. She serves on the Boards of Directors of Smart Freight Centre and Ocean Exchange to further initiatives towards efficient and zero emissions global freight and logistics, and sustainable ocean solutions. Her civic appointments include Chief Innovation Officer of the City of Los Angeles, Council District 15; and Commissioner of the County of Los Angeles Small Business Commission. After graduating from the University of Michigan with a degree in Mathematics, Ms. Carpenter spent the first decade of her career in computer and aerospace industries.

Session 2: Traditional Knowledge in Regenerative Aquaculture

Thursday, June 9, 2022 at 4:00 PM



Matt Teutimez

Mr. Teutimez has attained over 20 years of professional experience in large-scale construction monitoring, endangered and rare species surveys, focused species surveys, National Environmental Policy Act/California Environmental Quality Act (NEPA/CEQA) documentation, regulatory permitting, wetland/jurisdictional delineations (JDs), vegetation mapping, Global Positioning System (GPS) mapping, restoration monitoring, wildlife assessments, and report documentation, as well as over 15 years of experience in long-term monitoring and management for some of Southern California’s rarest bird species, including the California least tern, light-footed clapper rail, Belding’s savannah sparrow, snowy plover, burrowing owl, Swainson’s hawk, coastal cactus wren, least Bell’s vireo, and coastal California gnatcatcher. Mr. Teutimez possesses a scientific collecting permit (SC-007113) and is listed as an independent researcher for California least tern on KBC’s federal 10 (a)(1)(A) recovery permit TE-777965-9.

Matthew is the son of John Teutimez Jr., Elder of the Kizh-Gabrieleno Band of Mission Indians. Matthew is an enrolled member of the Gabrieleño Band of Mission Indians – Kizh Nation and has served as Tribal Biologist since 2010. Mr. Teutimez has been designated by his Tribe to possess and share Kizh-Gabrieleno cultural knowledge and practices taught to him by Chief Ernie P. Teutimez-Salas along with multiple family Elders of the Kizh-Gabrieleño Tribe. Mr. Teutimez received both his Bachelor of Science degree and his Master of Science degree in Biology from California State University, Long Beach and is the Tribe’s specialist in ethnobotanical and cultural uses of native plants and animals including the pre-historic distributions of natural resources throughout the ancestral territory of the Kizh-Gabrieleno Tribe. Mr. Teutimez is a Committee member on California’s Environmental Protection Agency’s Tribal Advisory Committee where he works with the State’s Environmental Boards, Departments, and Offices to support tribal involvement and environmental concerns and provides traditional ecological knowledge for State agencies to enhance their environmental policies to work towards restoring, preserving and protecting the natural environment for our future generations. The KizhGabrieleno Tribe is the only representative of a non-federally recognized Tribe on the EPA’s Tribal Advisory Council.


Nat Zappia

For two decades, Professor Natale Zappia has directed, created, and participated in multiple projects related to food systems, urban farming, environmental sustainability, and food justice. Between 2008-10 he served as the Executive Director of the Garden School Foundation (GSF), a 501(c)(3) developing garden-based curricula for students of need in South Los Angeles. His position afforded several opportunities to develop strategic planning in consultation with the board of directors, write grants, build new programs, undertake fundraising initiatives, manage the organizational budget, oversee staff and volunteers, and examine the power of food to shape communities in Los Angeles through neighborhood assessments on garden-based programs. Between 2013-16, he also served on the Board of Directors for GSF, heading up the strategic planning committee.

More recently, Zappia has co-founded and launched Open Gärden (OG) a history app connecting urban garden spaces with historical environments in Los Angeles and around the world. OG’s is particularly focused on connecting urban gardeners in South Los Angeles through peer-to-peer digital networks. As the Director for the IS at CSUN, Zappia is involved in numerous campus-wide, regional, and national sustainability projects, including overseeing climate and CO2 reduction initiatives. At Whittier College, Zappia co-directed (2011-2019) the Sustainable Urban Farm Lab (SUrF), where he taught and coordinated programming related to permaculture, environmental history and studies, and the humanities. SUrF is a 1/8-acre micro farm with a small orchard managed by faculty and students.

Session 3: Aquafarming Jobs of the Future – Building a Regenerative Farming Workforce

Thursday, June 16, 2022 at 4:00 PM



Ferris Kawar, Sustainability Project Manager/SMC Aquaculture Certificate

Ferris Kawar, Sustainability Project Manager, Santa Monica College. For the past 20 years Ferris has been using his degree in Marketing and his experience working at an ad agency to promote environmental awareness instead of product consumption.  As a behavioral change professional, Ferris has found himself teaching sustainability workshops, producing climate-related media, researching, and published green business guides to LA, SF and NYC, and serving as Recycling Specialist for the City of Burbank.  Ferris is currently the Sustainability Project Manager for Santa Monica College where he gets to work with students, faculty and staff to keep the institution’s sustainability leadership position strong among the community colleges in California.

Meredith Brooks, AltaSea, Ocean Pathways

Meredith Brooks is the Programs and Grants Manager Consultant at AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles. She is developing the AltaSea Marine Grants program to expand the portfolio of government grants, with a focus on STEM education, aquaculture and growing the Blue Economy in Los Angeles. Originally from Rancho Palos Verdes, Meredith now splits her time between the Olympic Peninsula, RPV, and Hawai’i, where she has spent the last decade helping manage one of the USDA Regional Aquaculture Centers. She has fifteen years of management and communication experience in the fields of sustainable aquaculture R&D and conservation and has authored two K-12 STEM curriculums for Hawai’i schools. Meredith graduated from the University of Southern California with Bachelor’s Degrees in Political Science and Journalism, and is a member of the Lambda Pi Eta honor society of the National Communication Association.

Kendall Barbery, GreenWave

As programs director, Kendall leads GreenWave’s national reef replication effort and oversees our inaugural farmer training program and kelp nursery, based in New England. Kendall attributes her passion for regenerative ocean farming to her childhood on the shores of Mobjack Bay, in the Chesapeake Bay watershed, and nearly ten years of combined experience working on charter, commercial fishing, and research boats in Alaska and Antarctica.

Prior to joining GreenWave, Kendall managed green infrastructure design and implementation projects with partners in Connecticut and New York, helping to mitigate nutrient and bacterial pollution in Long Island Sound. Kendall earned a Master of Environmental Science from the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies where she studied social ecology and water resources management.


Michael Kelly, Los Angeles Coalition for the Economy & Jobs

Michael H. Kelly currently serves as the Executive Director of the Los Angeles Coalition for the Economy & Jobs, a non-profit bi-partisan organization that brings together leaders from business, labor, academia and nonprofits to advance initiatives that generate economic growth, create quality jobs and a skilled work-force, and improve the region’s overall quality of life. Prior to working with the Los Angeles Coalition, Mr. Kelly has worked in a number of high-level positions, both in the private sector with The Boeing Company and with California Governor’s Gray Davis and Arnold Schwarzenegger. He currently serves on the Committee for Greater LA, Los Angeles Sports & Entertainment Commission Advisory Board, founding chair of the Philanthropic Foundation for California State University, Dominguez Hills and an advisory board member for WorkingNation.  He was also the recipient of the EnCorps Teachers Program 2010 “Torchbearer of the Year” Award. Michael received an Economics Degree from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and a Masters in Public Administration from the University of Southern California. He was a Dean’s Merit Scholar at USC. Michael is married to Mia Kelly and is the proud father of three daughters.

Session 4: Sea Through the Weeds – Navigating the Policies and Politics of Offshore Seaweed Farming in California

Thursday, June 23, 2022 at 4:00 PM



David Telling, Founding Partner at Pacific6

For over 30 years, David has specialized in the creative direction and production of marketing and education materials on all forms of media. He has helped brand, message, and market companies both large and small – producing award-winning advertising, print work, videos, web development and training programs for such companies as Sony, Panasonic, DuPont, Agility Logistics, Nexus, Dacor and Realty One Group.

David’s career began in education. He graduated with a Bachelor of Education, Honors Degree, in England, represented Great Britain at the International Olympic Academy in Athens/Olympia and was invited to California State University, Long Beach to lecture on the Pre-Modern Olympic Games. Over time, David transitioned his abilities as an educator to reach broader audiences – first as the Editor of Southern California Style Magazine, and then with Small Island Multimedia, his own advertising agency.

Diane Windham, Regional Aquaculture Coordinator – California, NOAA Fisheries West Coast Region

Diane Windham, NOAA Fisheries West Coast Regional Aquaculture Coordinator for California, has served in this role for over 15 years, as a liaison between the Office of Aquaculture at NOAA Headquarters and NOAA offices in California. Located in NOAA Fisheries’ Long Beach Office, Diane coordinates with NOAA policy and science assets both in Fisheries and the National Ocean Service (NOS). She also works closely with state and local government, and the aquaculture industry. Currently, Diane is working on several proposed offshore aquaculture projects in southern California, collaborating with National Ocean Service colleagues on marine spatial analyses and predictive modeling to inform siting and assess species and habitat interactions with potential aquaculture operations. Her work also includes conducting grant reviews as well as being co-PI on various grant projects. With a career spanning over 35 years with the federal government and most of that with NOAA Fisheries, Diane has worked primarily in regulatory and policy roles in California, translating science and applying it to inform the regulatory process. She has also worked on recovery planning for ESA-listed species, ESA listings and consultations, critical habitat designations, and outreach and education. A graduate of UC Santa Barbara, coastal and marine resource management is her passion, along with facilitation and negotiation skills to reach solutions and resolve conflicts between various users of ocean space. Prior to government work, Diane conducted marine mammal research and survey work in southern California, and on the Southern California Channel Islands


Wendy Greuel, Former Controller, City of Los Angeles

A working mom and lifelong Angeleno, Wendy attended LA public schools and graduated from UCLA. Wendy started her career in public service working for her mentor, former Mayor Tom Bradley, where for ten years she worked on a wide range of public policy issues including childcare, senior care homelessness, housing, public health, and education. While in Mayor Bradley’s office, Wendy was a leader in the creation of LA’s BEST, a nationally recognized after school program that provides a safe and supervised environment for children after school and helped found the city’s first childcare center. Wendy’s commitment to affordable housing led her to Washington D.C., where she served in President Clinton’s administration as the Deputy Director of the Interagency Council on Homelessness and later as the Southern California Regional Director at the Department of Housing and Urban Development. In 1997, Wendy transitioned into the private sector, working for five years in the film industry as an executive at DreamWorks SKG. She provided strategic guidance in their civic and philanthropic efforts in the Los Angeles Region. In 2002, Wendy was elected to the Los Angeles City Council and quickly developed an impressive record of accomplishment by creating jobs, preserving open space and reducing traffic congestion. In 2009, Wendy was elected City Controller, becoming only the second woman in LA’s history elected to citywide office. As Controller, she brought a laser focus to examining government finances ensuring our taxpayer dollars were spent efficiently and she brought greater transparency to government. In 2013, Wendy was engaged by the Orange County Discovery Science Center to help open their new facility, Discovery Cube LA, in the San Fernando Valley.  She is providing strategic advice on Board development, fundraising and civic engagement for Discovery Cube L.A. In addition, in 2016, Wendy was appointed as an Executive in Residence and Strategic Advisor at the California State University Northridge Nazarian College of Business and Economics.

She currently serves on the LAHSA Commission working on homeless issues, as Co-Chair of the LAUSD Task Force, as a member of the Women and Girls Initiative Governing Council, and on the boards of Emily’s List, Fisker Inc., Emerge CA, East Valley YMCA, Oakwood School, Discovery Cube L.A., Planned Parenthood Advocacy Project, CAUSE, ABODE, Homeland Security Advisory Council, UCLA Luskin Advisory Board and on the L.A. Kings Business Advisory Board. Wendy and her husband Dean are also the proud parents of their son, Thomas.