Select Page

Carl Safina

Professor
Carl Safina Endowed Research Chair for Nature and Humanity
Ph.D., Rutgers University
carl.safina@stonybrook.eduCarl-1
Marine vertebrates, fisheries policy, and raising awareness of ocean change

The Safina Center
5 Questions with Carl Safina

 


Carl Safina is best known for lyrical non-fiction writing. His work explores how we are changing the natural world and what the changes mean for human and non-human beings. Carl sees that the durability of human dignity and survival of the natural world will depend on each other; we cannot preserve the wild unless we preserve human dignity, and we cannot conserve human dignity while continuing to degrade nature. His work fuses scientific understanding, emotional connection, and a moral call to action.

Safina was born to parents whose Brooklyn apartment was filled with singing canaries—his father’s hobby. Trips to New York’s zoos, aquarium, American Museum of Natural History, and his uncles’ boat lit a city kid’s early fascination with animals. He began raising homing pigeons at age seven, and spent his teen years training hawks and owls, and immersed in fishing, bird-banding, and camping. Soon these passions took him on adventures in Kenya, Nepal, Greenland, and Arctic Canada and beyond.

Carl Safina’s seven books include “Song for the Blue Ocean,” “The View From Lazy Point; A Natural Year in an Unnatural World,” “A Sea in Flames; The Deepwater Horizon Oil Blowout,” “Beyond Words; What Animals Think and Feel,” and others. He hosted the 10-part PBS television series Saving the Ocean (which can be viewed at PBS.org). Carl contributes frequently to CNN.com, National Geographic, The New York TimesAudubonThe Huffington Post and others. His most recent TED Talk received a million views in its first month.
Audubon magazine named Carl Safina among its “100 Notable Conservationists of the 20th Century.” In 2011, Utne Reader listed him among “25 Visionaries Changing the World.” His work has won the Lannan Literary Award, Orion Book Award, National Academies’ Science Communication Award; the John Burroughs, James Beard, and George Rabb medals; Pew and Guggenheim fellowships, and a MacArthur “genius” fellowship.

Safina’s seabird studies earned him a Rutgers University PhD, then for a decade he worked on overhauling fishing policies, helping restore ocean wildlife. In the 1990s he helped lead campaigns to ban high-seas driftnets, overhaul U. S. fisheries law, improve international management of fisheries targeting tunas and sharks, achieve passage of a United Nations global fisheries treaty, and reduce albatross and sea turtle drownings on commercial fishing lines. Along the way, he became a leading voice for conservation, widening his interests from what is at stake in the natural world to who is at stake among the non-human beings who share this astonishing planet.

He is the endowed professor for Nature and Humanity at Stony Brook University and is founding president of the not-for-profit Safina Center. He has honorary doctorates from Drexel and Long Island Universities and the State University of New York.

Safina has been profiled in the New York Times, Rolling Stone, and on Nightline, and has been featured on National Public RadioBill Moyers’ special Earth on Edge; on on TV shows ranging from The Martha Stewart Show to The Colbert Report.

His latest bestselling book, Beyond Words; What Animals Think and Feel, affirms his role as one of today’s leading voices for nature. In The New York Review of Books, Tim Flannery wrote: “Beyond Words is gloriously written… Along with Darwin’s Origin and Richard Dawkins’s Selfish GeneBeyond Words has the potential to change our relationship with the natural world.”

(More at CarlSafina.org, SafinaCenter.org.)

 

Related Articles

New York State Ocean Acidification Task Force to Meet on November 1st

Please join us for the first meeting of the New York State Ocean Acidification Task Force November 1, 2018 6:30pm – 8:30pm 120 Endeavour Hall South Campus, Stony Brook University Stony Brook, NY 11794 The Ocean Acidification Task Force works to assess the impacts of...

SoMAS Photo Competition 2018

The SoMAS photo competition is an annual event where students (graduate and undergraduate), faculty and staff share their pictures with the SoMAS community and the general public. The Photo Competition will be divided into three categories with a single...

SoMAS Convocation 2018

Congratulations to our graduates!  The annual SoMAS Convocation occurred on Friday, May 18, 2018 at the Student Activities Center auditorium. Students gathered with their friends and family and SoMAS faculty and staff to celebrate the completion of their journey at...

SoMAS Faculty Testify Against Off Shore Drilling

Photo above:  Interim Dean Larry Swanson speaks about how oil from drilling offshore Long Island would reach our shores based on his research on prevailing winds and the movement of plastics debris in the Atlantic. Photo by Assemblyman Steve Englebright. Content...

Celebrating 50 Years With The Risk Of Saying Nothing

Photo above:  At the keynote for our "Risk of Saying Nothing" environmental media conference, five Deans stand with proclamations from local government officials.  From left, Valerie Cartright, Town of Brookhaven Councilwoman, Dr. Malcolm Bowman, Dr. Minghua Zhang,...

The Risk of Saying Nothing

"The Risk of Saying Nothing" Environmental Media Conference On Friday October 13th, join us to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Stony Brook University's School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences as we explore “The Risk of Saying Nothing,” an environmental media...

SoMAS 50th Anniversary

Interim Dean of SoMAS, Larry SwansonWelcome to SoMAS! Many opportunities await you here. 2017 will be an exciting year to enter a career in marine and atmospheric sciences as we celebrate our 50th anniversary! Read More from the Dean

2017 SoMAS Photo Competition

The SoMAS photo competition is an annual event where students (graduate and undergraduate), faculty and staff share their pictures with the SoMAS community and the general public. The Photo Competition will be divided into three categories with a single winner in each...

University Enjoys Great Relationship With Wildlife Refuge

Photo above:  The wildlife tank from the Quogue Wildlife Refuge From University Enjoys Great Relationship With Wildlife Refuge by Glenn Jochum on Stony Brook Matters, February 14, 2017 As every Biology 101 student knows, symbiosis is a mutually beneficial relationship...

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Skip to toolbar