Mission and Vision

A White-Tip Reef Shark, credit Scubazoo

Shark Steward’s mission is to save endangered sharks and rays from overfishing and the shark fin trade, and protect critical marine habitat through the establishment of marine protected areas. With your help, we will achieve this mission! Our vision is a healthy ocean with fully protected populations of sharks and rays and 30% of healthy marine areas protected for future generations.

David McGuire, Founder and Director Shark Stewards

Shark Stewards works to eliminate the global shark fin trade, through education and policy change from the USA to Asia, especially in the major import and consumption hubs of Malaysia, Singapore and China.

We work in policy to stop the overfishing of sharks and rays at the state, national and international level. Advocacy and introducing shark trade bans, increasing fisheries management in California, and building enforcement into international treaties have proven effective to reduce impacts on global shark populations. Our pressure on groups like the Pacific Fisheries Regional Management Council, United Nations Regional Fisheries Management Organizations (RMFO) and the Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species (CITES) influences decisions that protect sharks in international waters.

About Shark Stewards

From Threatened to Protected

Since 2009, 14 US States have implemented shark fin trade bans thereby reducing the flow of shark fin by as much as 70% in the USA and US overseas territories. International trade protections through CITES has increased to include whale sharks, basking sharks, sawfish, white sharks, hammerheads, oceanic whitetip, porbeagle sharks, mako sharks and giant rays. Our efforts regulating and eliminating driftnet fishing and longlines in key areas have helped protect sharks. Once severely threatened, great white sharks have received complete protection along the west coast of North America and the population is recovering.

Scallop hammerhead sharks are endangered and among the most coveted for their fins

Protecting Habitat and Ocean Health

We work to create and maintain marine protected areas in the USA and globally to achieve the 2019 Conference of Biological Diversity’s Goal of 30% of the ocean protected by 2030. We will do this through expanding and increasing MPAs in California and creating new dive tourism supported MPAs in SE Asia.

We Take Care of the Health of Our Oceans

Sharks are critical to the health and balance of ocean ecosystems. Thanks to our efforts, the global fin trade and consumption of fins is declining. Marine protected areas are increasing. Shark sanctuaries are attracting divers and supporting local economies. Countries around the world are recognizing that sharks are more valuable alive than in a bowl of soup. We strive to eliminate impacts on ocean health through direct action, including reducing plastic pollution and marine debris at the source.

We Can Save Sharks

We apply education and science towards advocacy and policy change to implement shark and marine protection including:

  • shark fin trade bans
  • strengthening fisheries policy
  • creating marine protected areas
  • ocean plastic pollution reduction