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Who We Are

Who We Are

advisor sarah milisenI grew up in chilly California waters, diving off the central and northern coast starting at age 13.  For college, I attended UC Santa Cruz and obtained a B.S. Degree in Marine Biology.

As a devout volunteer at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, this eventually led me to a job as an instructor for the summer kids’ program, Underwater Explorers. This fed into a desire to work closer with the ocean, so I moved to Hawai'i (aka Big Island) in 2013 to become a SCUBA Instructor, logging over 3500 dives in the last eight years in Kona.

In 2021, I had the amazing opportunity to help clean up the oceans in a huge way – by working with NOAA's Marine Debris project, involving a 30-day mission to the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands to clean up a staggering 123,690 pounds of marine debris. I now work as an offshore aquaculture technician, focusing on algae as a sustainable alternative to seafood, and still guides Blackwater dives in Kona, Hawai'i.

Why I support ODA: Kurt's passion for cleaning up the ocean is contagious. There are many “ocean cleanup” organizations – but I loved Kurt's ability to work with the community, inspire outreach, and really get results on his cleanup missions. I am proud to continue working with ODA to help promote a cleaner, healthier ocean!

Sarah working hardSarah working hard as she volunteers with ODA on a Big Island harbor cleanup

Sarah removing debris in an underwater cleanup

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