About This Year’s Conference

Capitol Hill Ocean Week 2018

Capitol Hill Ocean Week 2018

What started as a small, daylong gathering in 2001 is now Capitol Hill Ocean Week (CHOW), the nation’s premier annual conference examining current marine, coastal, and Great Lakes policy issues. Convened by the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation every June, CHOW brings together national and global stakeholders to address pressing science, conservation, and management issues facing our ocean and Great Lakes.

This year’s conference takes place over two days and includes high-level plenaries from ocean visionaries and breakout sessions for deeper discussions. Conversations will focus on our changing ocean, restoration of our ocean and Great Lakes, and working together for sustainable waters.

The Ocean Awards Gala

The Ocean Awards Gala, hosted by the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation in conjunction with CHOW, recognizes champions of marine and Great Lakes stewardship. Past honorees include President Bill Clinton, President George W. Bush, former First Lady Laura Bush, Members of Congress, leading scientists, philanthropists, explorers, and dedicated community volunteers. Guests enjoy a pre-dinner cocktail reception, post-program dessert reception, and a menu featuring sustainable seafood.

United States Of America Capitol Building
Hill Day

On June 7th, 2018, Capitol Hill Ocean Week (CHOW) provides the opportunity to elevate ocean and Great Lakes policy issues with Members of Congress and their staff with the first-ever CHOW Capitol Hill Day. Capitol Hill Day will give attendees the opportunity to meet with their elected officials to discuss critical policy issues affecting conservation, science and technology.

CHOW Capitol Hill Day will feature other unique opportunities for attendees to engage with key decision makers, in addition to Hill meetings:

  • A breakfast panel featuring Congressional staff discussing ocean and Great Lakes legislation;
  • A lunchtime briefing featuring current ocean leaders, tailored to an audience of Congressional staffers, to discuss ocean issues that need policy action and Member engagement; and
  • An evening Hill reception to network and connect with Members of Congress, Congressional staff, Administration officials, scientists, business and industry executives, and other ocean leaders.

The generosity of our sponsors enables the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation to offer “open source” programming. That brings together hundreds of people from diverse backgrounds to engage in the discussion of critical issues and the formulation of new ideas. Click here for sponsorship information and opportunities.

















Keynote speakers

Meet our most valued speakes


9:30am - 10:30am
Igniting Ocean Action through Media and Art​: Auditorium
1:15pm - 2:15pm
NOAA's Vision for the Blue Economy: Auditorium
11:00 am - 12:15pm
Restoring Coastal and Marine Ecosystems: Auditorium
2:45pm - 4:00pm
Breakout Session #3: Hemisphere B
11:00am - 12:15pm
Adaptive Management for Shifting Populations: Hemisphere A
2:45pm to 4:00pm
Reducing Risk in Coastal Communities: Hemisphere A
11:00am - 12:15pm
Breakout Session #3: Hemisphere B
2:45pm - 4:00pm
Offshore Aquaculture: Auditorium
10:30am - 11:00am
Break for Networking and Exhibits: Lobby
12:15pm - 1:15pm
Break for Lunch; Networking and Exhibits in the Lobby
2:15pm - 2:45pm
Break for Networking and Exhibits: Lobby
9:30am - 10:30am
Emerging Leaders Roundtable: Auditorium
3:00pm - 4:00pm
Congressional Leadership Roundtable: Auditorium
11:00am - 12:15pm
Restoring the Great Lakes: Hemisphere B
1:15pm - 2:30pm
Restoring American Fisheries: Auditorium
11:00am - 12:15pm
Predicting, Detecting, and Preparing for Increasing Acidification: Hemisphere A
1:15pm - 2:30pm
Breakout Session #3: Hemisphere B
11:00am - 12:15pm
The Value of Protected Places: Auditorium
1:15pm -2:30pm
Successes in Market-Based Solutions and Public-Private Partnerships: Hemisphere A
10:30am - 11:00am
Break for Networking and Exhibits: Lobby
12:15pm - 1:15pm
Break for Lunch; Networking and Exhibits: Lobby
2:30pm - 3:00pm
Break for Networking and Exhibits: Lobby

Event Registration

Ocean Awards Gala
$350 per person
  • Pre-dinner cocktail reception
  • Dinner featuring sustainable seafood options
  • Post-program dessert reception
CHOW 2018
  • Access to all conference sessions
  • Snacks and beverages throughout the day
  • Free Wi-Fi in conference areas
  • The opportunity to network with leaders in ocean and Great Lakes conservation
Capitol Hill Day
  • Breakfast panel featuring Congressional staff
  • Lunchtime briefing featuring ocean leaders
  • Evening networking reception

Newsletter signup

Presenting Sponsors

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Supporting Sponsors


  • 1300 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, DC 20004
  • info@marinesanctuary.org
  • 301.608.3040
  • 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM