Founder and CEO of Sustainable Ocean Alliance, award-winning social entrepreneur, thought-leader, and international speaker on the entrepreneurial mentality, ocean innovation, and technology, youth empowerment and blockchain for social good.
At the young age of 19, Daniela V. Fernandez founded Sustainable Ocean Alliance (SOA) as a college-room idea. Five years later, she has built SOA into a global organization that is cultivating and accelerating innovative solutions to protect and sustain the health of the ocean. With phenomenal speed, SOA has created the world’s largest network of young ocean leaders - through establishing a presence in over 50 countries, launching the first-ever Ocean Solutions Accelerator to support ocean start-ups, and partnering with corporations such as Lindblad Expeditions and The Economist, NGOs, and governments,including Indonesia and the European Union, to develop technological solutions that can address the greatest threats facing our planet.
How can we cultivate an entrepreneurial mindset in the next generation? What are the leading technologies that can be implemented to help address the challenges facing our environment? How can established companies harness the power of young people? What trends are we seeing in Gen Z and Millennials as consumers, employees, and future business leaders? Daniela is answering these critical questions that will influence the new wave of entrepreneurs and redefine the relationship between emerging technologies and social good.
Daniela has been recognized for her work by former U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, President Bill Clinton, and EU Commissioner Karmenu Vella. She is a World Economic Forum Global Shaper and a member of the Friends of Ocean Action, a select group of leaders coming together to fast-track solutions to the most pressing challenges facing the ocean. She has been listed as Azula’s Top 5 Ocean Heroes of 2016, named one of Glamour Magazine’s College Women of the Year, received the Peter Benchley Ocean Award, and Bustle Upstart Award. Fernandez is also a contributor to National Geographic and Sustainable Brands, has been interviewed by Voice of America, New York City TV, and Ocean Radio, and has been a panel and keynote speaker at multiple high-level events including: The Economist World Ocean Summit, United Nations, Net Impact Conference, U.S. Capitol Hill Ocean Week, Collision Conference, Sustainable Brands Conference, World Ocean Festival, and WE Day.