Pohnpei – Willy Kostka, co-founder and Executive Director of the Micronesia Conservation Trust, has been elected as the new Federated States of Micronesia representative on the Pacific Islands Ocean Observing System (PacIOOS) Governing Council. The Governing Council provides general oversight and policy guidance to the PacIOOS program. Council members also help to engage the broader stakeholder community, adopt implementing documents and strategic plans, and advise on major decisions for PacIOOS.
“Mr. Kostka brings a great deal of experience and expertise to our council. The Council members represent their respective organizations as well as other partners from their region by engaging with our diverse stakeholders. We are pleased to welcome Mr. Kostka to the Council and look forward to his contributions at our upcoming meeting in October,” says Melissa Iwamoto, PacIOOS Deputy Director.
Elected for 3-year terms, Council members work with PacIOOS staff through annual meetings and individual discussions to review region-wide needs from all stakeholders. 18 members form the Council, representing a variety of user groups and PacIOOS’ regions, including the FSM, Marshall Islands, Palau, Guam, CNMI, American Samoa, and Hawai‘i.
Mr. Kostka says, “In the Pacific, we are intimately connected to the ocean. I am honored to serve on the PacIOOS Council as a voice for our FSM community. The council will be a great platform to discuss ocean observing needs throughout the insular Pacific and to exchange ideas on how to better collaborate with local partners.”
Born and raised on the island of Pohnpei, Mr. Kostka has an extensive background in environmental conservation, sustainable development, and community engagement. Mr. Kostka served as a PEW Marine Fellow and has been actively involved in the development and implementation of the Micronesia Challenge ever since. As co-founder and Executive Director of the Micronesia Conservation Trust and the Conservation Society of Pohnpei, Mr. Kostka supports biodiversity conservation and oversees conservation funds in the endowment. Mr. Kostka also serves on a variety of local community Boards.
The Pacific Islands Ocean Observing System (PacIOOS) believes that ocean data and information can help save lives and resources. Collecting ocean data on the most recent conditions, forecasting future events, and developing new user-friendly tools help to ensure your safety, protect the environment, and support the economy. In collaboration with a large network of partners, PacIOOS provides valuable data to inform decision-making in Pacific communities. Based within the School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology (SOEST) at the University of Hawai‘i in Mānoa, PacIOOS is one of 11 regional associations that make up the U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS®).
On the Web
PacIOOS Organizational Structure and Governing Council:http://pacioos.org/about/
To learn more about PacIOOS: http://pacioos.org