Our People

Robert Jones

Director of Aquatic Food Systems

Arlington, Virginia

Headshot of Robert Jones.


sustainable aquaculture


Rachel Winters


Robert Jones is the Director of Global Aquatic Food Systems. Robert leads a team of the organization’s foremost experts to scale up innovative solutions and generate global conservation outcomes for the global fisheries and aquaculture sectors. TNC’s vision is for aquatic food systems to contribute low-carbon and biodiversity friendly sources of seafood for a growing population and generate livelihoods for coastal communities. Robert and his team are working to advance the growth and development of regenerative aquaculture, ensure improved management of large-scale and coastal fisheries through electronic monitoring and low-cost management approaches, and advancing community-led models for freshwater fisheries.

Prior to his current appointment, Robert was the inaugural director of TNC’s Global Aquaculture Program, a position which he held for 8 years. Robert is best known for developing a new scientifically-grounded paradigm for advancing nature and community-positive aquaculture that is generating conservation results in 10 countries, the creation of the U.S. Supporting Oyster Aquaculture and Restoration (SOAR) Program, and the co-design of the Hatch-TNC Blue Revolution Impact Investment Fund. Robert’s work with TNC has been featured by organizations including Harvard Business School and the World Economic Forum. Prior to joining The Nature Conservancy in February 2016, Robert served as the Program Coordinator for the NOAA Fisheries Office of Aquaculture. Much of Robert’s early career focused on wild fisheries management. He has served as at-sea Fisheries Observer on trawl, scallop, and gillnet boats from in the Northeast United States, a Foreign Affairs Officer for the U.S. Department of State focusing on international fisheries negotiations in the Pacific Ocean, and served as an economic analyst for the U.S. Gulf Shrimp Fishery

He holds a M.S. in Marine Affairs and Policy from the University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science and a B.A. from Boston College in International Studies. Robert is an avid fisherman and boater. A United States Coast Guard licensed Captain, he enjoys spending weekends with his family and friends fishing the coast of New Jersey.

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