The Team

Rita Sellares

Executive Director of the Dominican Foundation for Marine Studies (FUNDEMAR) since 2015. Master in Environmental Management (EUDE, Spain). Degree in Marine Biology from Farleigh Dickinson University (USA) with homologation in Marine Sciences (University of Cadiz (Spain). With 20 years of experience in the conservation of ecosystems and marine biodiversity in the Caribbean.

Under her leadership, FUNDEMAR has established sustainable community programs with nature-based solutions, elaborated and developed projects for the conservation of marine resources in the Dominican Republic, among which are the 1st assisted coral fertilization laboratory, the 1st reintroduction of manatees in the country and the 1st national manatee census using combined technology (drones and aircraft).

She has also contributed to science in the country through several studies, the publication of 18 research papers, and positioning the Dominican Republic as the country with the highest production of coral recruits in the Caribbean through assisted fertilization and thanks to international alliances established (SECORE Int. Corallium, TNC, …). She has successfully implemented international cooperation projects (Germany, Costa Rica, Honduras, Cuba, Jamaica, Haiti, Colombia, Mexico, Curaçao, United States and Bonaire), grants from the Caribbean Biodiversity Fund, United States Agency (USAID), Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), United Nations Development Program (UNDP), The Nature Conservancy (TNC), private donors and other grants.

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