Environmental Quality Protection, Beautification



Washington, DC


From the Arctic to the Gulf of Mexico to the halls of Congress, Ocean Conservancy educates and empowers people to take action on behalf of the ocean. We make ocean issues accessible and engaging, bringing science, political action and communications together to condition the social climate for change and protect the ocean for future generations.

Ruling Year


Chief Executive Officer

Ms. Janis Searles Jones

Main Address

1300 19th Street, NW 8th Floor

Washington, DC 20036 USA


science, advocacy, education, conservation, ocean, marine, fish, shark, ray, skate, elasmobranch, dolphin, marine mammals, sea turtle, whale





Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Natural Resource Conservation and Protection (C30)

Fisheries (D33)

Wildlife Sanctuary/Refuge (D34)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Programs + Results

What we aim to solve New!

Ocean Conservancy is working to protect the ocean from today’s greatest global challenges like the onslaught of ocean plastic and trash, overfishing and ocean acidification. We work with our members, supporters, academic institutions, businesses and companies, governments, other NGOs and communities, to create science-based solutions for a healthy ocean and the wildlife and communities that depend on it.

Our programs

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Ocean Conservancy Program

Where we workNew!

Charting Impact

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What is the organization aiming to accomplish?

What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?

What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?

How will they know if they are making progress?

What have and haven't they accomplished so far?

Ocean Conservancy wants to see a healthy ocean, abundant wildlife and thriving coastal communities.

Ocean Conservancy addresses some of the most challenging ocean issues and advocates for science-based solutions. Our program strategies include: • Tackling the threat of ocean plastic pollution by focusing on improving waste management and collection where the need is greatest, and helping people realize that every one of us has a role to play in keeping our beaches clean. • Tackling ocean acidification with global leaders by sharing knowledge and supporting businesses impacted by a changing ocean. • Protecting the Arctic in the face of climate change and high-risk activities like offshore oil and gas development, commercial fishing and increased vessel traffic. • Securing sustainable U.S. fisheries through fair, common sense management and engaged fishing communities. • Championing ecosystem-based management plans for all U.S. waters to ensure our ocean resources are used sustainably.

Ocean Conservancy has scientists, policy analysts, attorneys and communicators as part of a diverse staff. Our program teams work closely with staff in our development, finance and administration teams who help secure funding through generous donations from individuals and corporations as well as through foundation, government and multi-lateral grants. We are on the ground and invested in states from Alaska to Florida, Washington state to Washington DC. Our team is adept at working across academia, industry, governments, other NGOs and communities. We are bipartisan and fiercely loyal to our mission.

Ocean Conservancy takes monitoring and evaluation seriously. Each spring, we invest in annual planning and budget sessions for the coming fiscal year across every single program. These planning sessions include all program staff as well as staff from our government relations, communications, development, and senior leadership teams. The resulting plans include both annual and long-term goals for the program, a theory of change, and measures for success. The annual plans are submitted with the budget request to the Executive Team and finally the Board of Directors for review and approval. In addition, each program regularly reports on programmatic success in relation to planned deliverables to funders both during and at the end of grant periods.

Since we were founded in 1972, Ocean Conservancy has accomplished many incredible wins for our ocean, thanks to our volunteers, activists, ocean champions, dedicated staff and visionary leadership: • Introduced a dolphin-safe tuna labeling program • Introduced new fishing gear to prevent the drowning of sea turtles in the Gulf of Mexico • Created the International Coastal Cleanup, which is active in 112 countries and since its inception, more than 13 million volunteers have kept more than 250 million pounds of trash out of our ocean • Secured a state-wide network of marine protected areas in California covering nearly 1,000 square miles of coastal waters • Strengthened sustainable fisheries through the Magnuson Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act • Championed legislation that banned the use of microbeads (small plastic particles) in the U.S. • Secured important protections in the Bering Sea and Strait from the dangers of increased shipping • Supported creation of the fir

External Reviews

Awards & Accreditations

Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Alliance



Fiscal year: Jul 01 - Jun 30

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  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2017, 2016 and 2015
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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Need more info?

FREE: Gain immediate access to the following:

  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2017, 2016 and 2015
A Pro report is also available for this organization for $125.
Click here to see what's included.

Board Leadership Practices

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization


Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?

Not Applicable


Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?



Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?



Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?



Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?

Not Applicable

Organizational Demographics

In order to support nonprofits and gain valuable insight for the sector, GuideStar worked with D5—a five-year initiative to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion in philanthropy—in creating a questionnaire. This section is a voluntary questionnaire that empowers organizations to share information on the demographics of who works in and leads organizations. To protect the identity of individuals, we do not display sexual orientation or disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff. Any values displayed in this section are percentages of the total number of individuals in each category (e.g. 20% of all Board members for X organization are female).

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization


Race & Ethnicity

Sexual Orientation


Diversity Strategies

We track retention of staff, board, and volunteers across demographic categories
We track income levels of staff, senior staff, and board across demographic categories
We track the age of staff, senior staff, and board
We track the diversity of vendors (e.g., consultants, professional service firms)
We have a diversity committee in place
We have a diversity manager in place
We have a diversity plan
We use other methods to support diversity
Diversity notes from the nonprofit
Ocean Conservancy spearheaded an effort with other leading environmental non-profits to provide additional entry points for late-term college students and recent graduates of color into the marine conservation field. The Roger Arliner Young (RAY) Marine Conservation Diversity Fellowship was established and so named after a pioneering female African American marine biologist. Through this year-long paid fellowship program, we are actively recruiting new voices, perspectives and talents and make our organizations more open and engaged with diverse communities.