Oceana appoints Lasse Gustavsson to lead Oceana in Europe

Gustavsson will serve as Senior Vice President for Europe, joins Global Management Team.

Press Release Date: October 9, 2014

Location: Madrid


Marta Madina | email: mmadina@oceana.org | tel.: Marta Madina

Today, Oceana announced the appointment of Lars “Lasse” Gustavsson as its new Senior Vice President and Executive Director of the organization’s operations in Europe. Gustavsson succeeds Xavier Pastor, Oceana’s longtime leader in Europe.  He will also join Oceana’s global leadership team.

Gustavsson most recently served as the Executive Director of Conservation at WWF International, where he managed WWF’s global conservation efforts and oversaw a team of 3,000 staff members. Previously, he served as Chief Executive Officer of WWF Sweden and was responsible for relaunching WWF’s International Baltic Sea Program in nine countries as the Program Pirector of the Baltic Sea Ecoregion Programme. Gustavsson has also held, as Pastor did, leadership positions at Greenpeace International where he led the organizations advocacy efforts out of Amsterdam. 

“With Lasse’s leadership, Oceana will add to its already impressive record in Europe,” said Oceana chief executive officer Andy Sharpless. “Our European leader — as Xavier Pastor demonstrated — needs to be someone who understands the science, is connected to policymakers, and shows a proven ability to win — real, tangible change via policy advocacy campaigns. Lasse has all of the qualities and, like Xavier, is also a proven leader.”

Xavier Pastor, Oceana’s founding leader in Europe, is retiring from management positions after over four decades in the ocean conservation movement. He will continue to work with Oceana leading the organization’s at sea expeditions and as a senior advisor in international projects  going forward.

Oceana in Europe has won numerous victories and grown significantly since being established in 2003. The organization helped to pass a complete shark fin ban in the EU, put an end to illegal driftnet fishing in the Mediterranean and played a major role in the passage of the EU Common Fishery Policy (CFP) in 2013, which puts in place a science based and conservation fisheries management system for Europe.

“I am joining Oceana because the organization is poised to do something truly remarkable,” said Gustavsson. “Together with our allies we can help save the oceans and feed the world. In Europe we will leverage the strong laws to dramatically rebuild our fish populations and to restore our marine biodiversity.”

Oceana is the world’s largest organization focused solely on ocean conservation – it is campaigning to save the oceans and feed the world.