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Courtney Sakai

Chief of Staff

Washington, DC, USA


Courtney Sakai is Oceana’s Chief of Staff, and has worked with Oceana for nearly ten years. Before rejoining Oceana in July 2013, Sakai was vice president of the Coalition of Services Industries (CSI), a business association representing the interests of the services sector.

Prior to CSI, Sakai spent nearly ten years at Oceana as a senior campaign director and then as the managing director of trade and food security. She designed and ran numerous initiatives, including Oceana’s international trade portfolio and its campaign to stop “overfishing subsidies.” As senior campaign director, Sakai made fishing subsidy reform a global trade and environment priority and centerpiece in the ongoing negotiations at the World Trade Organization (WTO) and Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

Before joining Oceana, Sakai was a director of alliance development with the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, and vice president at the public relations agency Cohn & Wolfe. She also served as deputy assistant secretary of the California Resources Agency, and as a principal at a leading political consulting firm in Sacramento, CA, and served for eight years on the professional and political staffs of California Governor Pete Wilson.

Sakai holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Smith College and is a graduate of the California Executive Fellowship.