Fellow spotlight: Biz Wallace

Biz Wallace in green rain jacket at a vessel's wheel
Alaska Sea Grant State Fellow Biz Wallace.

For her Alaska Sea Grant State Fellowship, Biz Wallace is working with Alaska Sea Grant on the Alaska Clean Harbors Program. The voluntary statewide program helps harbormasters, communities and boaters prevent pollution and reduce waste in harbors and waterways. With the guidance of Tav Ammu, the Alaska Sea Grant Marine Advisory agent based in Dillingham, Wallace is focused on increasing harbor participation, developing a tiered certification system, and public outreach events and activities.

Wallace is looking forward to traveling to harbors around the state and supporting them in their efforts to implement clean harbor practices. She is also working on updating the Alaska Clean Harbors website with new outreach materials and resources. In the spring, she will travel to events and festivals to better understand the unique needs of communities and to assist with boater education efforts.

Wallace is passionate about coastal communities and boating; she holds a 200-ton U.S. Coast Guard captain’s license and has spent the past decade sailing professionally. She first heard of the Fellowship while finishing her master’s degree in marine biodiversity and conservation from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego, California. For her capstone project, Wallace collaborated with California Sea Grant on a short film about sustainable seafood in the area. She valued the community-oriented and science-based solutions offered by Sea Grant and wanted to apply for the program in Alaska.

metal sign with harbor boats in background
“Keep our harbors clean” sign at Ninilchik Harbor. Photo courtesy Melissa Good/Alaska Sea Grant

The Alaska Sea Grant State Fellowship Program has allowed Wallace to combine her passions of filmmaking, science education, and boating in service of coastal communities. “Alaska is on the front line of so many issues in marine conservation and sustainability, so the opportunity to work directly with boaters and harbormasters on something as important as water quality seemed like a dream come true,” she shared.

She hopes to continue to build a career that will protect and conserve our valuable ocean resources.