Dr. Jorge Brenner is the Executive Director for the Gulf of Mexico Coastal Ocean Observing System (GCOOS). He has more than 15 years of experience in marine ecology, biodiversity conservation, environmental engineering, geospatial data science, ecological economics, ecological restoration, fisheries sustainability, and climate change risk management.
He obtained his doctorate in Marine Science from the Catalonia Polytechnic University in Barcelona, Spain. His dissertation was focused on mapping and valuing ecosystem services in the Mediterranean coast in a collaboration with the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) and the Gund Institute for Ecological Economics of the University of Vermont. After completing his doctoral degree, he joined the Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies at Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi as a Post-Doctoral Researcher. During the last 10 years, he has served as an Associate Director of Marine Science and Sustainable Fisheries with The Nature Conservancy. He also holds a bachelor’s in science in Marine Biochemical Engineering, and a master’s in Environmental Engineering from the Monterrey Tec Institute.
Throughout his career, Dr. Brenner has led projects and published about biodiversity informatics, strategic conservation planning, migratory transboundary resources, international marine protection initiatives, natural capital sustainability, and risks and adaptation to climate change in social-ecological systems. He has managed environmental projects and research in support of collaborations in the US, Mexico, Cuba and Spain and, since early in his career, has mentored national and international students.
He was a member of the National Research Council’s Committee of the Effects of the Deepwater Horizon Mississippi Canyon-252 Oil Spill on Ecosystem Services in the Gulf of Mexico and co-authored two books published by the National Academies.
Dr. Brenner grew up in Veracruz, Mexico along the Gulf of Mexico coast, where he learned to SCUBA dive. Today he is an American Academy of Underwater Sciences-certified scientific diver.
As the new Executive Director of GCOOS, Dr. Jorge Brenner is interested in continuing the successful work under his predecessor, Dr. Barbara Kirkpatrick, and exploring additional opportunities in ecological forecasting, climate risks, and collaborations around the Gulf of Mexico.