Tobias Aguirre, M.I.A.

Created on Friday, 01 December 2017

Tobias Aguirre is a thought-leader in sustainable seafood known for bringing diverse stakeholders into collaborative relationships in order to overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles. As CEO, he sets the conservation vision and organizational strategy for FishWise.

Through his work with seafood industry executives, trade associations, foundations, government, and NGO leaders, Tobias builds a collaborative approach to conservation, propelling the sustainable seafood movement forward. To that end, Tobias serves on many advisory bodies, including the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation’s Environmental Stakeholder Committee, the Food Marketing Institute’s Sustainable Seafood Committee Advisory Council, the Advisory Board of the Conservation Alliance for Seafood Solutions, the Seafood Summit Advisory Board, and Fair Trade USA’s Fisheries Advisory Council. Drawing from these diverse multi-stakeholder efforts, Tobias charts new national and global strategies, develops innovative solutions for FishWise business partners, and forges new ground in the complex world of seafood sustainability.

Tobias frequently speaks at leading industry events, hosts panels with diverse topics and speakers, and contributes to many strategic initiatives that aim to scale environmental sustainability and social responsibility globally. He works towards an industry that makes a significant contribution to the food needs of a growing population, while supporting biodiverse, productive, and resilient marine and freshwater ecosystems.Tobias has demonstrated that the complexities of the seafood industry don’t have to preclude effective goal-setting and on-the-ground progress.

When Tobias took on his leadership role in 2005, FishWise was working with 10 retail stores, all in Northern California. Through this early work, Tobias led his team to build a scalable model of business engagement – one that is iterative, adaptive, informed by new ecological and social science research, and honed by the needs of business. He has propelled FishWise to one of the world’s foremost sustainable seafood organizations. Now, FishWise is partnered with Albertsons Companies (2300+ stores), Target (1900+ stores), Hy-Vee (240+ stores), and many other regional retailers and suppliers throughout the United States, with some of the most ambitious commitments in the industry. He has positioned FishWise as a trusted guide that businesses seek out for expertise and a proven track record of success. Ultimately, Tobias works to empower the seafood industry to become champions for the oceans and the people that depend upon them.

Tobias holds degrees from Stanford University and UCSD’s School of International Relations and Pacific Studies, where he specialized in nonprofit management and business strategy and was named a Schoepflin Fellow for his work on sustainable fisheries. He has been honored by the Monterey Bay Aquarium as a Seafood Watch Hero and was awarded the Spirit of the Alliance Award by the Conservation Alliance for Seafood Solutions.

Each day, Tobias is inspired by a call to action from Paul Hawken: “You are Brilliant, and the Earth is hiring.”