Robert Wintner is Snorkel Bob, Hawaii’s largest reef outfitter. His five marine volumes show reef society and personalities, narrating conservation victories and politics. As Executive Director of the Snorkel Bob Foundation, he is dedicated to reef recovery and the global campaign to ban the aquarium trade; “It’s all one reef.”
Wintner’s twenty books include fiction and memoir, well reviewed, optioned for film rights and recognized for excellence. Reef photography rounds out the opus with five volumes on reef culture and characters of Palau, Hawaii, the Great Reef, the Virgins, Fiji, Tahiti and Cuba. Wintner’s reef photography book, REEF LIBRE, An In-Depth Look at Cuban Reefs & The Last, Best Reefs in the World and REEF LIBRE, the Movie, capture this pivotal time, from the streets to the reefs. Dragon Walk (Skyhorse Publishing, NY, 2018) and Dragon Walk, The Movie, link reef health and politics in Indonesia, the Philippines and Hawaii.
The sum of these parts comprises a reef conservationist with a gifted eye for composition, focus and insight. Wintner is heard across the Hawaiian Islands and around the world.
His short fiction has appeared in Hawaii Review (University of Hawaii) and Sports Illustrated. His historical novel, In a Sweet Magnolia Time was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize and a PEN/Faulkner Award. Los Angeles production companies optioned his sailing novel Whirlaway and the motorcycle adventure The Modern Outlaws for film rights.
Wintner lives on Maui with Anita, Cookie and Larry. His writing draws on real time experience, combining decades on the high seas and below the surface with a literary style honed to efficiency. Wintner’s latest novels are A California Closing, Where market value looks moxie in the eye, and all parties sign off, and Reefdog, an adventure romance of Hawaii and Polynesia with fishy values. Robert Wintner is Executive Director of the Snorkel Bob Foundation and active in Hawaii’s conservation community, working diligently to protect Hawaii’s reefs.
Rene Umberger is a coral reef wildlife consultant and advocate with over 10,000 dives in Hawaii and throughout the Pacific. Umberger founded For the Fishes and co-founded the Reef Rescue Alliance, both focused on advocacy and education to reduce the impact of the marine aquarium trade and promote understanding and stewardship for coral reefs and wildlife.
Umberger has worked with Hawaii’s marine tourism industry in the development of standards for operations in fragile coral reef environments.
Her protocol for volunteer SCUBA diver and snorkeler assisted marine debris removal has resulted in the safe removal of several tons of abandoned fishing gear from Hawaii’s reefs.
Addressing the impacts of the aquarium trade, Umberger’s advocacy has resulted in landmark laws for Maui County, proving the strongest protections for reef wildlife in the state, and county resolutions on Kauai and Hawaii Island, urging an end to Hawaii’s coral reef wildlife trade. Umberger authored a report for Humane Society International, A Review of the Coral Reef Wildlife Trade in Hawaii. She now works to secure protection for reef wildlife throughout Hawaii.
When he was seven, Ben Williamson made headlines as the winner of a catchphrase contest held by a local McDonald’s—the same fast-food chain that he would crusade against as an adult in PETA’s McCruelty campaign, which sparked hundreds of protests at McDonald’s restaurants.
As PETA’s senior international media director, Williamson works with major media outlets to launch PETA’s groundbreaking casework, including FOX News, the BBC, and The Washington Post.
Williamson’s op-eds have appeared in The Independent, the International Business Times, Newsweek, and USA Today, and he’s been interviewed by countless national and international English-language broadcasters, such as Al-Jazeera, the BBC, and CNN. Before joining PETA in 2011, the London native studied at the London School of Economics, where he re-established the university’s Vegetarian and Vegan Society.
Willy Kaupiko is the Mayor of Milolilii, the last fishing village on the Big Island of Hawaii.
Growing up in Miloliʻi, Willy attended high school at Lahainaluna in the boarding program. After high school he served the United States for four years in Vietnam, and is a Veteran. He lived on Oahu and was a beach boy and life guard, he also paddled for the Waikiki Beach Boys. He later returned to Miloliʻi to help his parents with their business and raise his own family. Uncle Willy as many of the locals refer to him as is an avid ocean activist. Willy owns a refuse removal service and also hauls potable water.
He is an active member of the Hau’oli Kamana’o Church in Miloliʻi, and Willy continues to advocate for environmental and animal conservation causes that protect the precious natural resources of MiloliʻI village, especially his beloved ocean. He strongly believes that it is your kuleana to malama your place and to be grateful for all that you have been blessed with. As the Mayor of Milol’i, Willy always makes the effort to protect just causes and fights for what is right.
Gail Grabowsky, Ph.D.
Gail Grabowsky, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor and Director of the Environmental Studies program at Chaminade University in Honolulu. Gail has served as a member of the State Environmental Council and the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands Coral Reef Ecosystem Reserve Council. She has also been the associate director of the Pacific Symposium for Science and Sustainability. Gail has won several awards for teaching, research, community service, swimming, and outrigger canoe racing.
Her interests include developmental and evolutionary biology; invertebrate zoology, ecology, biomechanics and environmental science.
On Earth Day April 2007, Dr. Gail’s book “50 Simple Things You Can Do to Save Hawai’i” was published and released.
Jonathan is an ethologist and best selling author, he currently serves as Director of Animal Sentience with the Humane Society Institute for Science and Policy, and Department Chair for Animal Studies with Humane Society University, in Washington, DC. He lectures internationally on the subjects of animal behavior and the relationship between humans and animals. Jonathan is the Associate Editor of the journal, Animal Sentience.
Jonathan was born in England, and grew up in New Zealand and Canada before moving to the United States. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in biology from York University, Toronto, and a Master of Science in biology from Carleton University, Ottawa. Jonathan completed a Ph. D in ethology (animal behavior) at the University of Tennessee. He has worked for The Humane Society of the United States, Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.
Jonathan taught a course in animal behavior for Humane Society University, where he became the Chair of the Department for Animal Studies. He also developed and taught a program in Animal Sentience. Jonathan’s first book, The Use of Animals in Higher Education: Problems, Alternatives, and Recommendations, was published by Humane Society Press. His trade book, Pleasurable Kingdom: Animals and the Nature of Feeling Good, was released by Macmillan.
House of Representatives
Jessica Wooley earned her law degree from University California, Berkeley. Practicing law in Hawai`i, she began her commitment to public service as an attorney for the Legal Aid Society of Hawai`i under the AmeriCorps program. She created Access to Justice programs throughout the state making legal services more accessible to people in need.
In 2000, Jessica became Deputy Attorney General, representing the Clean Water, Drinking Water, and Wastewater Branches for the Department of Health. She focused on law enforcement, and prosecuted the state’s biggest environmental administrative enforcement cases. She also served as a member of the advisory group for the Northwest Hawaiian Islands (Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument) where she sits as a Conservation member. In 2008, Jessica became a Hawai`i State House Representative, and served three terms. Governor Abercrombie asked Jessica to be Director of the Office of Environmental Quality Control (OEQC), where she served until the end of 2015. She is currently running again for the House of Representatives.
Teresa Telecky, Ph.D. is Vice President of the Wildlife Department for Humane Society International. She is an expert on the United Nations Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and serves as the Executive Director and Vice President of the Species Survival Network, an international coalition of non-governmental environmental organizations committed to the promotion, enhancement and strict enforcement of CITES.
Telecky has authored or co-authored several published scientific papers on animal behavior and endocrinology, as well as numerous and technical reports of The HSI. Following a post-doctoral fellowship with the National Science Foundation and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science at the National Institute for Basic Biology in Okazaki Japan, Telecky specializes in the international wildlife trade.
Teresa Telecky wrote the Wild Bird Conservation Act that stopped wild bird trafficking for the pet trade.
Producer, Director, Writer
Paula Fouce produced and directed No Asylum: The Untold Chapter of Anne Frank’s Story, (Roco Films) based on the recently discovered letters of Otto Frank, Anne Frank’s father. No Asylum details his desperate struggle to obtain visas to save his family from the Holocaust; it was screened at the United Nations, Geneva by Cine–ONU on the 2018 International Day in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust. Academy Award winner, Maria Florio is Creative Producer.
Paula produced and co-directed with Academy Award nominee William Haugse, the documentary, Song of the Dunes: Search for the Original Gypsies; (PBS). Paula directed and produced Not in God’s Name: In Search of Tolerance with the Dalai Lama, which screened through the Foundation for Universal Responsibility supported by the Dalai Lama’s Nobel Peace Prize winnings; (PBS). She authored the book, Not in God’s Name: Making Sense of Religious Conflict, featuring an interview with Mother Teresa. Paula directed and produced Naked In Ashes, a critically acclaimed theatrical feature documentary on India’s yogis, edited by Academy Award nominee William Haugse. She produced and directed the documentary, Origins of Yoga: Quest for the Spiritual, and co-authored the book, Shiva (1996, White Orchid Press). Paula was Vice President and Director of KRCA-TV, a TV station in Los Angeles from 1990 -1997 (now under new management). She is President of Paradise Filmworks International. Paula served as Co-Chair of the Southern Asian Art Council at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
Editor, Co-Producer, & Writer
In his editing career, Bill Haugse has been nominated for an Oscar for Hoop Dreams, and an Emmy for The Last Days of Kennedy and King. He has received the American Cinema Editors Eddie Award among many other prizes.
Sunset Story, an ITVS/PBS documentary was the winner of a special jury prize at the Tribeca Film Festival, & the Audience Award at the L A Film Festival, (PBS). Recent editing includes Naked in Ashes; a feature about Yogis in India, which according to the LA Times, was “beautifully crafted”; Stevie (Lions Gate), directed by Steve James; and Unprecedented, about the 2000 Florida presidential election.
Other works include Cattle Annie and Little Britches featuring Rod Steiger and Diane Lane and Paul’s Case starring Eric Roberts. He credits include scores of shorter films as director and editor, including Breakfast in Bed starring John Ritter. Bill edited with Orson Welles and John Cassavetes, and Bill is a member of the professional honorary ACE.
Tim Kettle has worked in the entertainment field for over 40 years. He earned a Masters Graduate Degree from The University of Texas, Television and Film School and spent four years working with PBS in Texas. He has been a member of the Directors Guild of America, as a director, for over 30 years.
Tim has served as Producer, Director, Associate Director and Editor in Hollywood since 1980. Some of his shows include, That’s Incredible, Those Amazing Animals, In Search of…, Circus Of The Stars, The Academy Awards, Prime Time Emmys, Daytime Emmys, The People’s Choice Awards, The Kennedy Center Honors, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Comedy Central Roast, CNN Heroes, Dr Phil and Oprah Winfrey, BET Honors, Critics Choice, Psychic Chronicles, Home for the Holidays and many more.
His film producing credits include Not in God’s Name (PBS), Origins of Yoga, Naked in Ashes, theatrically released, and Song of the Dunes (PBS) and No Asylum.
Ben Zuckerman is a Professor in the UCLA Physics & Astronomy Department.
He has maintained a continuing interest in life on Earth and the
prevalence of life in the Universe. He developed and taught a UCLA Honors
course entitled "The 21st Century: Society, Environment, Ethics". Ben has
co-edited six books; these include, "Human Population and the
Environmental Crisis" (Jones & Bartlett 1995).
Ben has been a member of the Board of Directors of Sea Shepherd
Conservation Society and the Sierra Club and the Board of Advisors of the
the Wildlife Waystation.
Michael X. Flores
Michael X. Flores has worked on several award-winning films since attending the U.S.C. where he received a Master of Fine Arts in Cinema-Television Production. Michael was awarded the John Frankenheimer Directing Scholarship for merit in directing and the National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts Entertainment Scholarship. He was also selected as a fellow in Film Independent’s Project: Involve, in which he was mentored by Jeffrey Blitz: director of the Academy-Award-nominated documentary Spellbound (2002). He edited the Student-EMMY ™ winning TV pilot, “Cost of Living” and wrote and directed an award-winning short film, Esperando (Waiting/Hoping). Michael worked as an assistant editor on Tamra Davis’s documentary Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child (2010), which premiered at Sundance; on One Lucky Elephant (2010), which premiered at the Los Angeles Film Festival; and on First Position (2011), which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival. He edited Nick Broomfield’s documentary, Sarah Palin: You Betcha! (2011), which premiered at Toronto International Film Festival; Sweet Talk (2012); Last Will & Testament (2012), executive produced by Roland Emmerich; and Justice for My Sister (2012) - Best Documentary at the Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival. He also worked on Tapia (2013), which premiered at the Los Angeles Film Festival, and Harmontown (2014), which will premiere at South By Southwest. He has also worked on several narrative shorts, music videos, and commercials.
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