Dr. Jyotika Virmani is the Executive Director of the Schmidt Ocean Institute. Prior to joining the Schmidt Ocean Institute, Dr. Virmani was the Executive Director of Planet & Environment at XPRIZE where she led the Rainforest XPRIZE for development of new biodiversity assessment technologies and the Shell Ocean Discovery XPRIZE for innovations in unmanned seafloor mapping, including a NOAA Bonus Prize for technologies to track underwater chemical or biological signals autonomously to the source. She joined XPRIZE in 2014 as the Technical Director for the Wendy Schmidt Ocean Health XPRIZE for advances in pH sensors to detect ocean acidification. Before joining XPRIZE, she was the Associate Director of the Florida Institute of Oceanography and a Senior Scientist at the UK Met Office. Dr. Virmani has a Ph.D. in Physical Oceanography from the University of South Florida, a M.S. in Atmospheric Science from SUNY at Stony Brook, and a B.Sc. in Physics from Imperial College London. Dr. Virmani currently serves on numerous panels including the Schmidt Marine Technology Partners Advisory Panel, Catch the Next Wave Committee, the U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System Federal Advisory Committee, and the National Geographic Executive Committee for Research and Exploration. She is a Fellow of the Royal Meteorological Society and The Explorers Club, and a Member of the American Meteorological Society and American Geophysical Union and in her spare time writes an informative tropical storms blog and has produced an award-winning short science fiction film, Hashtag.