Work Plan


International Fisheries Section
Patrick Cooney, President

  1. Communicate
    • Continue to improve the IFS website using IFS member generated content (Peter Holder)
    • Continue Social Media presence and promote interaction (So-Jung Youn and Lisa Kelly)
    • Continue email updates of activities, communications, and section information (Erin Loury)
    • Promote the IFS Editorial Assistance Program (Julie Claussen)
    • Continue sending welcome letter to international delegates for AFS and IFS
    • Create network of IFS Members to translate critical IFS communications (Gus Engman)
  2. Manage directives
    • Maintain fiscal responsibility of section funds (Paul Simonin)
    • Grant Carl Sullivan Travel Awards
    • FSBI-AFS IFS Fellow Program to Nottingham Trent University, July 27-31, 2020 (Mary Fisher)
    • Bern Megrey World Fisheries Congress Travel Awards (Bob Hughes)
    • International Fisheries Science Prize
    • Solidify AFS Education Section’s commitment to funding assistance with IFS Fellow Program
  3. Expand membership
    • Promote donations for gift AFS memberships to Low- and Middle-Income Nations Members
    • Promote membership with other International agencies
    • Work with AFS to identify potential International Fisheries Section Units (Egypt, Mexico)
  4. Contribute to AFS
    • Continue supporting the launch of country profiles in Fisheries and house them on website
    • Develop IFS exhibit and host international symposium at AFS 2020 (Columbus, Ohio, USA)
  5. Support global conferences and initiatives
    • Support WFC2020 Adelaide
    • Support the development of a WFC2024 North American bid (Doug Beard, Barb Knuth)


Presidential Remarks and Vision

Just like a young salmon, my international adventures got off to a slow start in life. I lived in the same small town in California in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains for the first 18 years of my life. My days were filled with exploring local trout streams and volunteering many hours a week at a joint state and federal trout and salmon hatchery not far from my house. This hatchery is where I learned that salmon make incredible journeys across vast oceans. I, too, wanted to migrate and take journeys to gain a diverse perspective in fisheries science.

The subsequent 18 years of my life were filled with scientific adventures that allowed me to conduct research and teach about fish in Puerto Rico, Mexico, Guatemala, New Zealand, Australia, Bahamas, Canada, and Scotland as well as more than half the United States. From all of these adventures, I learned that our commonalities are best understood by exploring diversity and embracing the beauty that comes with having global and diverse experiences. The International Fisheries Section does an amazing job of bringing diversity together through the common thread of fisheries research.

When I was a student member of AFS, I was fortunate to be the recipient of the International Fisheries Section travel award in conjunction with the Fisheries Society of the British Isles. I then oversaw the award process for several years before establishing a new process that enables all past recipients to rotate through the role and gain valuable leadership experience. This award and subsequent leadership role continue to be the most advanced way for a young professional to ascend the ranks of being an impactful member of AFS and IFS.

Following the presidential initiatives of Carl Burger, Bob Hughes, Julie Claussen, Steven Cooke, and Abigail Lynch, I am honored to represent IFS in a leadership role. I look forward to welcoming members from the international community to the American Fisheries Society and representing the AFS internationally.

Beyond the typical duties of the IFS President, the major task will be involvement with the World Fisheries Congress 2020 in Adelaide, Australia, and preparing a bid package for the World Fisheries Congress 2024.