Terry Garcia was one of the first board members for the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation. Now leading the global consultancy firm Exploration Ventures, he spent many years with the National Geographic Society, responsible for the Society’s core mission programs, including those that support and manage more than 400 scientific field research, conservation and exploration projects annually. He oversaw the Society’s Explorers-in-Residence, Fellows and Emerging Explorers programs, National Geographic Museum and exhibitions, live events, and location-based entertainment.
In June 2010, Mr. Garcia was appointed by President Obama to serve on the National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling. The Commission investigated the root causes of the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and made recommendations on addressing potential future spills from offshore drilling.
Prior to joining National Geographic in 1999, Mr. Garcia was Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere, U.S. Department of Commerce, and Deputy Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). In this role he directed and coordinated U.S. coastal, ocean and atmospheric programs, including recovery of the endangered species, habitat conservation planning, Clean Water Act implementation, the development of the national marine sanctuary system and commercial satellite licensing. From 1994 to 1996, he was NOAA’s General Counsel. In that capacity, he led the implementation of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Restoration Plan for Prince William Sound and the Gulf of Alaska.
Before entering government service, Mr. Garcia was a partner in the law firms of Manatt, Phelps & Phillips and Hughes Hubbard & Reed. Mr. Garcia is chairman of the advisory board for the Scottish government’s Saltire Challenge Prize for marine renewable energy. He also serves on NOAA’s Ocean Exploration Science Advisory Board and Sanctuary System Business Advisory Council. He is a member of the boards of directors of The Jason Project and the Amazonian Center for Environmental Education and Research (ACEER) and the advisory board of the Harte Research Institute of Gulf of Mexico Studies, Texas A&M University.
Mr. Garcia received his bachelor’s degree in international relations at the American University and his law degree, with honors, from the George Washington University.