Oceana’s New York Gala Raises $1.5 Million To Restore Ocean Health and Abundance | Oceana

Oceana’s New York Gala Raises $1.5 Million To Restore Ocean Health and Abundance

Supporters celebrate organization’s 20th anniversary with poetry, music, and dancing



Press Release Date

Thursday, October 7, 2021
Location: New York, New York
Contact: Anna Baxter: abaxter@oceana.org 202.868.4064

NEW YORK – On Monday, October 4 leading philanthropists, businesspeople, and entertainers gathered at a private club for the annual Oceana New York Gala to celebrate the organization’s 20 years of winning policy victories that restore ocean abundance.

The event raised $1.5 million in support of Oceana’s global campaigns and featured an esteemed group of speakers and attendees.

Oceana CEO Andrew Sharpless served as master of ceremonies for this year’s event and delivered a keynote address.

“What does saving our ocean have to do with saving our planet? Everything. Oceana’s job is to save the ocean to help feed the world. And feeding the world from a rebuilt, abundant ocean, helps save us from climate change,” Sharpless told attendees.

Oceana board members and partners Susan and David Rockefeller, Jr. hosted the event.  

“It’s because of you that in just 20 years, Oceana has led the way with science and advocacy-based campaigns to deliver impact that counts for our oceans—securing 225 victories and protecting nearly 4 million square miles of ocean and counting,” said Susan Rockefeller.

This year’s event followed the theme “Sirens & Sailors” and featured poetry readings, live music, and dancing. Actors, activists, and Oceana board members Ted Danson and Sam Waterston virtually shared remarks and readings of “Whale Day” by Billy Collins and “The Sound of the Sea” by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, respectively.

Additional guests included Sutton Stracke, Robert and Leslie Zemeckis, Konica-Minolta CEO Patrick Banno, Dropps® Founder and CEO Jonathan Propper, and others.

The evening concluded with a dance party and attendee sing-along led by musical guest The Rakiem Walker Project.

Oceana’s exclusive watch partner, Blancpain, was the presenting partner for this year’s event. For nearly 70 years, since the 1953 launch of the world’s first modern diving watch, the Fifty Fathoms, Blancpain has enjoyed historical links to the ocean. Through its ocean exploration and conservation initiative, the Blancpain Ocean Commitment, Blancpain has co-financed 21 major scientific expeditions, including the recent Oceana expedition to the Bajos del Norte reef in Mexico. The two organizations work closely together to further their important contributions to expanding marine protected areas and presenting award-winning documentaries, photo exhibits, and publications.  

For a full list of underwriters and partners, gala committee members, auction items, and more information about Oceana’s 2021 New York Gala, visit: https://www.oceananygala.org/.

Photos from the event available here: bit.ly/3Ferx9T

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Oceana is the largest international advocacy organization dedicated solely to ocean conservation. Oceana is rebuilding abundant and biodiverse oceans by winning science-based policies in countries that control one-third of the world’s wild fish catch. With more than 225 victories that stop overfishing, habitat destruction, pollution, and the killing of threatened species like turtles and sharks, Oceana’s campaigns are delivering results. A restored ocean means that 1 billion people can enjoy a healthy seafood meal, every day, forever. Together, we can save the oceans and help feed the world. Visit www.oceana.org to learn more.