We Are Hiring

Joanna Toole Internship – Global Ghost Gear Initiative (Summer/Fall 2021)


Co-founded by Joanna Toole in 2014, and launched by World Animal Protection in 2015, the GGGI is a cross-sectoral alliance addressing abandoned, lost and otherwise discarded fishing gear (ALDFG) or “ghost gear” worldwide. Through the collective impact of its members, the GGGI aims to mitigate the ecological and economic impacts of ghost gear. The GGGI serves as a global clearinghouse for information on ALDFG; informs specific plans, strategies and policies to prevent and reduce ALDFG; and catalyzes practical and replicable solutions for on-the-ground and in-the-water removal and prevention of ghost gear. The GGGI also works with governments and multilateral organizations around the world to elevate the issue of ghost gear on the global agenda and inspire international action. Ocean Conservancy assumed the role of GGGI host organization in 2019 and manages the day-to day operations, budget and staff of the GGGI. The GGGI is part of the Trash Free Seas® program’s portfolio of initiatives addressing marine debris at Ocean Conservancy.


Ocean Conservancy educates and empowers citizens to take action on behalf of the ocean. From the Arctic to the Gulf of Mexico to the halls of Congress, Ocean Conservancy brings people together to find solutions for our water planet. Informed by science, our work guides policy and engages people in protecting the ocean and its wildlife for future generations.


OceanCare is a Swiss non-profit organisation. It was founded in 1989 and has a strong commitment to realistic and cooperative initiatives. The organisation works at national and international levels in the areas of marine pollution, environmental changes, fisheries, whaling, sealing, captivity of marine mammals and public education. OceanCare holds Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations (ECOSOC) and is partner of the General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean (GFCM), the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS), and the UNEP/CMS Agreement on the Conservation of Cetaceans in the Black Sea, Mediterranean Sea and Contiguous Atlantic Area (ACCOBAMS). OceanCare has also been accredited as a Major Group to the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA), which is the governing body of UNEP and is a part of the UNEP Global Partnership on Marine Litter.


Based at the tip of Cape Cod in the Atlantic Ocean, the Center for Coastal Studies (CCS) is a non-profit scientific research organization with an emphasis on marine mammals of the western North Atlantic and on the coastal and marine habitats and resources of the Gulf of Maine. With a small but robust staff, CCS promotes stewardship of coastal and marine ecosystems, conducts interdisciplinary research activities and provides educational resources that encourage the responsible use and conservation of coastal and marine ecosystems. CCS is home base to the federally-permitted Marine Animal Entanglement Response team, and regularly collaborates with other institutions and individuals to advance the Center’s mission.


In March 2019, Joanna Toole, one of the principal architects and driving forces behind the establishment of the GGGI, was tragically killed in the Ethiopian Airlines crash as she was on her way to further engage the international community to address ghost gear and its environmental impacts. In recognition of Jo’s leading role in addressing ghost gear and in celebration of Jo’s legacy and dedication to her work, the GGGI, in close consultation with Joanna’s family, friends and the members of the GGGI including OceanCare, has proposed to establish the Joanna Toole Internship to further the work of the GGGI, to continue to inspire generations to come to protect our oceans from ghost gear and support female leaders in the field in pursuing a career in ocean conservation.  The Joanna Toole Internship will be hosted by Ocean Conservancy and funded by Ocean Conservancy and Ocean Care to support GGGI’s work as well as that of GGGI member organizations that have come forward; and will be formally awarded by the Joanna Toole Foundation and OceanCare together with the GGGI.


We are seeking a female graduate student, or recent graduate with a background in marine science, biology, political or social science, or any related/relevant topic with a keen interest in ALDFG and in pursuing a career in ocean conservation to assist the Senior Leadership of the GGGI with coordinating the GGGI activities, engaging the GGGI membership and advancing specific projects related to building evidence as well as our GGGI solutions work. This position is 40 hours a week with a flexible schedule. The first three months will be an in-person field experience with the Center for Coastal Studies in Provincetown, Massachusetts. The second three months will be a remote position with the Global Ghost Gear Initiative at Ocean Conservancy.


  • Support one or more of our GGGI member organizations with a dedicated project in line with the interests of the intern and needs of the GGGI.
  • Assist with the reporting on GGGI Solution Projects for internal purposes as well as for our donors.
  • Assist with updating the GGGI website with news stories, project write-ups, and; as well as putting together the GGGI newsletter, external presentations and other communication tasks (such as factsheets, policy briefs and blogs) as required.
  • Handle logistics for special functions and conducts other special projects and activities, including the mid-term GGGI Annual Meeting as assigned.
  • Support the development and execution of GGGI online workshops and presentations for the implementation of our Best Practice Framework.
  • Support the launch of the GGGI Data Portal 2 in collaboration with the GGGI Building Evidence Working Group.
  • Perform other duties as assigned by the GGGI Senior Leadership.


  • Complete specific and dedicated field work focused on the harmful impacts ghost gear can have on our oceans and its precious marine life including marine animals. The field component will be based at the Center for Coastal Studies in Provincetown, Massachusetts. Tasks will depend on the needs of and opportunities at the organization at the time of the internship, but will be related to evidencing the impacts of ghost gear and, if possible, differentiating them from other human impacts on marine animals. Responsibilities may include providing hands-on support of research and rescue programs in the field, assisting in the analysis of data (such as to determine if ghost gear is involved in marine animal entanglements or to classify beach cleanup materials), supporting awareness raising activities and helping formulate and implement collaborative solutions.


  • Dedication and passion for the stewardship of the oceans, in particular an interest in ghost gear.
  • Recent graduate of a Bachelor or Master’s program in a related/relevant field. Current students considered but position requires 40 hours/week.
  • Desire to learn more about the environmental impact of ghost gear, seafood sustainability and relevant stakeholders.
  • Excellent computer skills including Microsoft Office suites.
  • Strong communication skills and reliability; strong logistical skills.
  • Ability to meet deadlines and to manage multiple simultaneous projects and stakeholders; attention to detail. Ability to coordinate multiple tasks from a variety of staff simultaneously with minimum supervision.
  • Experience working in a collaborative office or professional environment.
  • Capable of working on boats (preferred) and in a range of field conditions
  • Self-motivation, flexibility, and a positive “can-do” attitude.


If you think you have what it takes to join Ocean Conservancy’s team, please apply here.

Ocean Conservancy is an equal opportunity employer and will not discriminate against any employee or applicant on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin, religion, age, sex, handicap, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, or veteran status. Ocean Conservancy is continually seeking to diversify its staff, particularly to broaden opportunities for individuals from demographic groups that are historically underrepresented in the sciences and in environmental advocacy.

Ocean Conservancy is an equal opportunity employer.

  • Provincetown, MA
  • Global Ghost Gear Initiative, Trash Frees Seas® Program
Reports To
  • Manager, Global Ghost Gear Initiative
  • Part Time

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