Consulting Group

Blue Economy Consulting Group brings together a team of experts in the blue economy providing strategic and tactical consultation.


Sam Bowman has 40 years of management experience in the seafood industry in North America, Europe and Asia in various roles including: CEO, President, Global Marketing Manager, North American Sales Manager, International Business Development Manager and Consultant. Sam has a Bachelor of Science degree in Marine Biology from the University of British Columbia. His experience includes both finfish and shellfish aquaculture technology with an emphasis on strategic planning, marketing and business development. Sam is a seafood supply chain expert, a brand marketing specialist, and he has extensive experience in product development and value-added processing. Sam has devoted his career to the responsible development of aquaculture in both freshwater and marine environments, applying science, technology and innovation to produce a sustainable source of healthy protein for the blue economy.

Sam has worked in senior management positions for both start-ups and multinational companies, including two of the world’s largest salmon aquaculture producers, Mowi and Cermaq. He has also held senior positions in the world’s largest aqua feed company, Skretting, and its parent company Nutreco. Sam is a former Board member of the BC Salmon Farmers Association, is past president of the BC Shellfish Growers Association, and a former Board member of AquaNet, Canada’s Network for Centres of Excellence for Aquaculture Research. Sam was recently on the Regional Advisory Committee for the Marine Plan Partnership for the North Pacific Coast with the BC government and coastal First Nations. Sam Bowman has extensive Board experience in the seafood and aquaculture industry.

Sam’s areas of expertise:

  • Aquaculture Technology
  • Marketing Strategy
  • Business Development
  • Talent Recruiting
  • Supply Chain Management
  • Indigenous Economic Development
  • Market Research
  • Strategic Planning
  • Investment Advice
  • Product Positioning
  • Brand Marketing
  • Seafood Product Development
  • By-Product Utilization
  • Sustainable Packaging
  • Aqua Feed Manufacturing
  • Regulatory Environment
  • Genetics
  • Fish Health & Stress Management
  • Animal Welfare
  • Circular Economy


Art Sterritt was born in Hazelton, British Columbia and is a member of the Gitga’at First Nation. Art has more than 45 years of experience in Aboriginal Rights and Title, self-government and community economic development. He was a commercial fisherman on the BC coast running his own business and vessel, fishing for salmon, halibut and herring. According to his peers, Art was an outspoken advocate for commercial and aboriginal fisheries and he was always direct in communicating why traditional fisheries were important to his community and people.

During the following decades, Art demonstrated his courage, passion, integrity and leadership skills in many capacities, including:

  • Department of Fisheries & Oceans Canada – Native Advisor
  • Gitksan Fishing Industries – Business Agent (managing 70 gillnet vessels)
  • Native Fishing Corporation – Chairman of the Board (managing 252 gillnet vessels)
  • NorthCorp Ferry Corporation – Founding President
  • Tsimshian Tribal Council – Founding Chair & President (elected)
  • North Coast Tribal Council – President
  • BC Treaty Commission – Founding Treaty Commissioner (elected)
  • Gitga’at First Nation – Chief Treaty Negotiator
  • Wild Salmon Centre – Board Member
  • Skeena Headwaters Initiatives – Advisor
  • World Wildlife Fund – Pacific Council Board Member & National Council Member
  • Coastal Shellfish Corporation – Founder & Chairman of the Board

For 16 years, Art was Executive Director of the Coastal First Nations, an alliance of eight First Nations on BC’s North Coast and Haida Gwaii, with more than 20,000 members. Through his work with the political and hereditary leaders, and his ability to collaborate with a broad diversity of interests, Art Sterritt led one of the most celebrated and important conservation victories in Canada’s history, conserving the largest and most ecologically significant temperate rainforest in the world – the Great Bear Rainforest.

Art was the driving force behind the many successful land and marine initiatives of the Coastal First Nations, developing win-win partnerships with federal, provincial, and municipal governments, industry, environmentalists and other interest groups to begin the work of creating a new sustainable economy in the Great Bear Rainforest. He believed that to meet the challenges they faced depended on the ability of empowered indigenous communities to create partnerships and build strong networks for increased economic and conservation opportunities, blending the “Intellectual and Scientific Expertise of the Modern World” with the “Deep and Ancient Wisdom of Traditional Cultures.”

Since 2000, during a time of fiscal restraint, Art and his team were able to raise an astounding $400 million to move the Coastal First Nations agenda forward to achieve its goals. In response to a lack of opportunities in the traditional coastal economy, the Coastal First Nations looked beyond the usual resource extraction and exploitation models. They had to branch out from the fishing and forestry industries that had sustained them for generations. These conservation and economic development funds are now allowing indigenous communities to move closer to restoring and implementing responsible land, water and resource management approaches in the Great Bear Rainforest.

Some of the conservation and economic initiatives the Coastal First Nations are involved in include:

  • 2001 Framework Agreement with the Province of BC: establishing a government-to-government relationship, improving land use policies and practices, introducing an ecosystem-based management framework for land and resource management, and pursuing new economic opportunities for Coastal First Nations.
  • 2006 Framework Agreement with the Province of BC: establishing zoning for land use plans, resulting in the legislation of 128 conservancies and 21 biodiversity areas representing 2 million hectares of protected coastal lands. These conservancies protect and maintain social and cultural uses, and enable conservation-based economic activities. An additional 4 million hectares are now managed according to ecosystem-based management principles which balance ecosystem wellbeing with human wellbeing.
  • Resource Stewardship Offices: bringing all natural resource programs under a single umbrella, allowing communities to take a coordinated and collaborative approach to the stewardship of their lands, waters and culture.
  • Forestry Interim Measures Agreement: with the BC government, increasing all BC First Nations’ access to forestry tenures and revenue-sharing.
  • Coastal Shellfish Corporation: establishment of a shellfish aquaculture industry for BC’s North Coast including a modern hatchery and deepwater farms for Great Bear scallops, oysters and geoduck clams.
  • Great Bear Carbon Credit Corporation: revenue-sharing program based on environmentally credible and marketable forest carbon offsets, including a $36 million sales agreement.
  • Community Energy Action Plan: replacing diesel with sources of clean, renewable energy to generate electricity in remote communities.
  • Liquified Natural Gas (LNG): vetting potential economic opportunities associated with LNG development on the North Coast, while balancing environmental concerns.

Art Sterritt has been recognized for his social, environmental and economic achievements, including:

  • 2013: The 50 Most Powerful People in British Columbia No. 29 rated by Vancouver Magazine for his efforts to protect the environment
  • 2014: The 50 Most Powerful People in Canada No. 18 rated by Maclean’s Magazine
  • 2014: The Bright Award for Environmental Sustainability awarded by Stanford University topping the list of nominees from North America and Central America
  • 2014: EcoTrust Indigenous Leadership Award
  • 2015: Canada’s Clean 50 Award in recognition of his contribution to “Sustainable Development and Clean Capitalism”

Art is also an accomplished artist, sculptor and goldsmith. His work can be found in museums and private collections throughout North America including The Museum of Anthropology in Vancouver, The Royal BC Museum, The Royal Ontario Museum, and The Canadian Museum of Civilization amongst others.

Art Sterritt is a well-known and respected speaker across Canada and internationally, covering many issues including sustainable economic development, clean energy policy, oil tanker bans on the BC North Coast, old-growth forest carbon credits and relationship building, not just for indigenous Canadians, but for all Canadians and citizens of our planet. He understands the importance of both traditional and scientific knowledge to solve the social and environmental challenges of our times and for generations to come.

“The natural capital of our ecosystems that have sustained us for millennia, now depend on sustainable communities to protect them.” – Arthur Sterritt, 2010

Art’s areas of expertise:

  • Indigenous Economic Development
  • Strategic Partnerships
  • Technology Transfer
  • Talent Recruiting
  • Government Relations
  • Non-Government Organizations Relations
  • Investment Advice
  • Marine & Land Use Planning
  • Ecosystem-Based Management
  • Strategic Planning
  • Business Development
  • Commercial Fisheries
  • Wild Salmon Enhancement
  • Shellfish Aquaculture
  • Circular Economy


Brian Glebe has had a distinguished 40-year career in Canadian science and business after earning his PhD from McGill University in Montreal and a Bachelors Degree in Agriculture from the University of Guelph. As a Postdoctoral Fellow, Brian was part of the St. Andrews Biological Station team studying the performance of the first North American Atlantic salmon strains to be experimentally grown in open sea pens.

Brian’s past accomplishments include: Director of the Aquaculture Department (which he founded) of the Huntsman Marine Science Centre, Instructor of the affiliated NB Community College Aquaculture Technicians Training Program, Director of the North American Salmon Research Centre (sea ranching & farmed salmon genetics), Freshwater Production Manager for the largest Canadian salmon farming company, and Program Manager for the industry-driven Atlantic Salmon Broodstock Development Program. He has held adjunct professor positions with the Universities of Guelph and New Brunswick, where he supervised graduate students and taught courses in Aquaculture and Ecology. Brian retired from the Canadian Department of Fisheries and Oceans, St. Andrews Biological Station, where he held the position of Aquaculture Research Scientist.

Brian Glebe’s corporate executive experience includes VP of Mariculture Products (salmon farming in Maine) and President of Briden Consultants Ltd., the largest supplier of Atlantic salmon seedstock to the early salmon farming industries in New Brunswick and Maine. Briden has provided salmon genetics and physiologic consultation to numerous farming companies in both Canada and internationally. Services have included the design, commissioning, and operation of hatcheries. In Chile, Briden designed land-based salmon broodstock facilities for two major farming companies and continues to provide services for modern genomics breeding programs and for hatchery design support in Canada.

Brian is a renowned fish physiologist and salmonid aquaculture research scientist with more than 70 publications, and he has presented new contributions to aquaculture science as an international speaker. His accomplishments have been recognized with awards as Aquaculturist of the Year and Atlantic Innovator of the Year. Brian has held executive positions with numerous government bodies and community volunteer organizations, and he is passionate about fly fishing for Atlantic salmon and Arctic char.

Brian’s areas of expertise:

  • Aquaculture Genetics
  • Salmonid Physiology
  • Broodstock Management
  • Hatchery Design, Commissioning & Management
  • Fish Health & Vaccines
  • R & D Project Management
  • Aquaculture Instruction
  • Indigenous Economic Development
  • Aquaculture Facility Design & Development using advanced tools including: BIM, GIS, 5D Modelling, VR and Reality Mesh Visualization


Greg Deacon has 38 years of experience in the aquaculture and aqua-feed industry in North America, Europe and Asia, as a Fish Nutritionist, Fish Culturist, Feed Sales Manager and Consultant. Greg has a Bachelor of Science (Honours) degree from the Department of Animal Science at the University of British Columbia. Greg studied animal nutrition with a specialization in fish nutrition. A pioneer in Canada’s aquaculture industry, in the early 70’s Greg was a fish culturist for the first salmon farming company in British Columbia at BC Aquaculture Licence #1. Greg was involved in everything from building the hatchery, sea cages and water system, and feeding, harvesting and processing the fish.

For a period of 20 years, Greg Deacon was Senior Nutritionist for the North American division of Skretting, a global leader in aqua feed manufacturing and part of the Nutreco group. Greg’s responsibilities included setting quality control standards for ingredients and feed manufacturing, diet formulation, ingredient and product development, and technical consulting for feed management with Skretting’s fish farming customers. Greg was also involved in ingredient purchasing and feed pricing decisions. Greg was responsible for research and development for Skretting in North America and he is a co-author on 14 scientific papers. Greg actively collaborated with the research team at Nutreco’s Aquaculture Reseach Centre and he was responsible for designing hi-performance diets for new aquaculture species. Greg was Skretting’s representative on the Science Council of BC and he frequently represented the company at the BC Salmon Farmers Association.

Since retiring from Skretting in 2007, Greg has retained the position of Senior Nutritionist and is still involved in feed formulation decisions, nutritional consulting and feed and ingredient registration with regulatory authorities.

Greg’s areas of expertise:

  • Fish Nutrition
  • Product Development for Ingredients & Feed
  • By-Product Utilization in Aqua-Feeds
  • Evaluation of Novel Feed Ingredients
  • Registration of Ingredients & Feed in Canada
  • Aqua Feed Formulation
  • Aqua Feed Manufacturing
  • Feed Management Strategies


Dr. Hugh Mitchell is an internationally recognized fish health professional with a 32-year career as a fish biologist and veterinarian in North America. Hugh was the founding president of the American Association of Fish Veterinarians and past president of the World Aquatic Veterinary Medical Association. Dr. Mitchell was also co-chair of the Fish Practitioners Advisory Committee for the International Association of Aquatic Animal Medicine. Hugh is a regular speaker at international aquaculture conferences, has authored numerous scientific publications, and wrote the Fish Health, Etc. column in Aquaculture Magazine.

Hugh received his Bachelor of Science in Marine Biology from Canada’s University of Guelph, a Master of Science in Aquatic Ecology from the University of Toronto, and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine in 1989 from Guelph’s Ontario Veterinary College. After veterinary school Hugh accepted the position of Fish Health Manager for Ocean Products, one of the first salmon farms in Maine, USA that was later acquired by Connors Brothers which became Heritage Salmon and is now owned by Cooke Aquaculture. As a New England representative, Hugh was heavily involved lobbying the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in Washington, D.C. for greater access to pharmaceuticals for farmed fish. He was also instrumental in initiating the New England Farmed Fish Health Workshop.

Dr. Mitchell has been actively involved in developing new fish vaccines, and he pioneered mass injection vaccination techniques for farmed salmon in North America. In 1995, Hugh was offered a position at Biomed–Alpharma, now Zoetis–Pharmaq, the global leader in vaccines and health products for aquaculture. This led to a move to Seattle to take on responsibilities as Clinical Trials/Veterinary Services Manager, then Manager of Vaccine Development, and later Manager of Technical Services, supporting Alpharma’s 75% market share for aquaculture vaccines in the US market.

In 2000, Dr. Mitchell accepted the position of Manager of Professional Services USA with Novartis Animal Health – Aqua business unit, where he managed the North American aquaculture business, winning regional and global awards within the organization. Hugh left Novartis in 2009 to become VP International Market & Technical Development for Syndel Laboratories, Western Chemical & Aquatic Life Sciences and set up the Division of Aquatic Life Veterinary Services. In 2011, he purchased this Division with his colleague, Dr. Tom Goodrich the fish vaccine pioneer, and since that time AquaTactics Fish Health based in Washington state has been providing veterinary services and custom prescription vaccines to aquaculture and ornamental fish clients throughout North America. In 2020, the company was purchased by Bimeda, a leading global animal health company, and Hugh and Tom were retained under contract.

Hugh is a licensed veterinarian in 15 U.S. states and 2 Canadian provinces, with clients including private aquaculture producers, federal and state stock enhancement facilities, indigenous hatcheries, and public aquaria.

A dual US-Canadian citizen, Hugh lectures on fish health and aquaculture topics at trade and professional meetings all over North America and internationally, as well as delivering fish health seminars to clients. Hugh has taught salmonid medicine and fish vaccinology at Louisiana State University’s AQUAMED summer sessions. Dr. Hugh Mitchell is a pioneer in applied fish epidemiology and vaccine technologies, and is recognized as one of North America’s leading fish veterinary practitioners.

Hugh’s areas of expertise:

  • Fish Health Management
  • Veterinary & Diagnostic Services
  • Fish Disease Epidemiology
  • Aquatic Animal Health & Production Medicine
  • Research & Development
  • Vaccine Technology
  • Product Development
  • Clinical Trials
  • Aquaculture Biologics & Pharmaceuticals
  • Regulatory Affairs
  • Certified Fish Health Inspections
  • Fish Husbandry
  • Stress Management
  • Animal Welfare


John L. Holder has been involved in many aspects of the global aquaculture industry since 1973. His pioneering work encompasses the design of simple fish hatchery facilities to the most advanced (RAS) Recirculating Aquaculture Systems anywhere in the world. During his 48-year career in aquaculture, John has been actively engaged in transforming the industry from flow-through hatcheries to recirculation facilities around the globe.

A graduate of Canada’s University of Guelph with a Bachelor of Science degree in Fisheries & Marine Biology, John Holder started his career at the largest trout farm in Ontario where he managed farm operations. After 12 years, John answered a call to Newfoundland where he helped start the salmon farming industry in Atlantic Canada. For 3 years, John was in charge of Newfoundland’s first commercial salmon hatchery. He then moved his family to British Columbia on the Pacific coast to take on the position of Fresh Water Production Manager for Pan Fish, which later became part of the Mowi Group.

During his tenure at Pan Fish, John built the freshwater division from one hatchery to five facilities, becoming BC’s largest producer of Atlantic salmon smolts. John later took on the role of Special Projects Manager for the global company International Aquafoods. He sourced and refined the technologies to create recirculating aquaculture systems which are successfully operating around the world today.

John L. Holder and his associates are currently designing and building leading-edge RAS facilities using advanced, proven technologies. John has been lead consultant and project manager on many RAS design and construction projects on six continents. These turn-key projects are acknowledged as some of the most demanding construction ventures undertaken at this scale, from a technological, budget management and logistics control perspective. John L. Holder and associates have designed land-based RAS production facilities for: Atlantic salmon, coho & chinook salmon, rainbow & steelhead trout, barramundi, tilapia, sturgeon, kingfish, yellowtail tuna, grouper, hybrid striped bass, largemouth bass, walleye, shrimp, and geoduck clams.

John has published numerous technical articles in Hatchery International, Northern Aquaculture and other periodicals, and he is sought after as a guest speaker at international aquaculture conferences.

John’s areas of expertise:

  • RAS Hatchery Design & Operation
  • RAS Full-Cycle Production Design & Operation
  • Water Treatment Systems Design & Operation
  • Turn-Key RAS Facility Construction
  • RAS Technology Evaluation & Equipment Sourcing
  • Audits for RAS Facility Technology & Operations
  • RAS Facility Technology & Operations Upgrades
  • Project Management


Kevin Onclin has over 35 years of experience in the aquaculture industry in various senior management roles. Kevin has a Bachelor of Science degree in Fisheries Biology from the University of Guelph. Kevin has acquired a broad spectrum of operational and management skills as General Manager of fully-integrated salmon aquaculture companies, Director of Operations and CEO of aquaculture service business for Badinotti Group (originally Wavemaster and then part of the AKVA Group), Technical Services Manager, College Instructor, and Consultant.

Kevin’s wide range of experience includes management of freshwater hatcheries, saltwater cage culture operations, aquaculture equipment supply & service operations, post production facilities including processing plants, road and marine transportation, and supply chain distribution systems. Throughout his professional career, Kevin has applied peer-reviewed science and research to ensure the long-term sustainability of aquaculture operations, both environmentally and economically. He has implemented and managed many capital expenditure projects to advance the aquaculture industry through science, technology and innovation.

Kevin Onclin is currently serving on the Board of Directors of the BC Salmon Farmers Association and he has held other prestigious appointments including the international EWOS Innovation Research and Development Board, the Vancouver Island Economic Alliance Board, the Badinotti Group R & D Technical Committee, the United Hatcheries Board, and past president of the Sunshine Coast Aquaculture Association. Kevin also negotiated and signed the first protocol agreement with BC’s Ahousaht First Nation on behalf of Cermaq Canada’s salmon farming operations in Clayoquot Sound.

Kevin’s areas of expertise:

  • Fully-integrated Finfish Production
  • Aquaculture Operational Procedures
  • Fish Health & Stress Management
  • Animal Welfare
  • Regulatory Environment including Waste Management
  • Land-based & Marine Net Services for Fish Farms
  • Aquaculture Vessels & Equipment
  • Research and Development
  • Business Development
  • Indigenous Economic Development
  • Project Management


Rick Reynolds has 35+ years of experience in the aquaculture and fish feed industry in North America and in all the major aqua-feed producing countries globally. As Purchasing Director for Skretting North America, Rick had top-level responsibility for the global procurement of macro- and micro-ingredients formulated into all Skretting fish diets.

As Skretting’s Global Buyer sourcing all ingredients from North America, Mexico and Central America, Rick had responsibility for ensuring the continuous supply of quality-approved ingredients to three state-of-the-art aqua-feed production facilities in North America. Rick managed all marine ingredient procurement for Nutreco’s ShurGain petfood division. Ingredients were sourced from over 25 countries, requiring full compliance with Canadian Food Inspection Agency, Customs requirements, and Skretting global standards.

Rick Reynolds joined Skretting Canada at its inception. As Director of Operations and member of the Senior Management Team, Rick was responsible for overseeing the fish feed plant construction in Vancouver, BC and he developed Skretting’s infrastructure in Canada for servicing the remote farm sites, including: warehousing, distribution, and marine transport. Rick also acted as General Manager for one of Skretting’s North American divisions, with direct experience managing large-scale aqua-feed manufacturing, with full operational management in a state-of-the-art production facility.

Rick holds a Bachelor’s degree in Urban Geography from the University of British Columbia. Earlier in his career, Rick was a founding partner of the Pearl Bay Oyster Company, with fully-integrated, deepwater oyster culture operations in BC. Rick was also a founding partner in an oyster farming equipment company, Dark Sea Enterprises. With his partners, Rick helped build one of the largest suspension cultured farming operations in Canada supported by an aquaculture technology company that continues to supply its innovative equipment to a global market.

Rick has been deeply involved in the marine transport industry throughout his career. He has extensive experience shipping dry and liquid commodities around the world. At Skretting, Rick introduced the innovative solution of shipping bulk fish meal and oils in containers, which revolutionised the movement of dry and liquid ingredients globally. This innovative marine transport solution addressed supply chain challenges and significantly reduced costs, boosted transport efficiency and reduced working capital. This marine transport system remains as one of the main container shipping modes world-wide.

Rick’s areas of expertise:

  • Supply Chain
  • Logistics
  • Marine Transport
  • Aqua Feed Manufacturing
  • Aqua Feed & Petfood Ingredients
  • Operations Management
  • International Trade


Vittorio Venturini is a specialist in shellfish aquaculture in multiple species on land and sea. With 30+ years of experience in the seafood and aquaculture industry, Vittorio has held senior management roles as CEO, COO, Managing Director, VP Operations, and Consultant in both Chile and Canada. He is an expert in aquaculture business development, project management and production operations in small, medium and large-scale fully integrated companies. Vittorio holds a Bachelor’s degree in Fisheries Engineering from the Pontifical Catholic University of Valparaiso in Chile and a Post-graduate Diploma in Business Management.

Vittorio Venturini was actively involved in the development of Chile’s aquaculture industry, being appointed to the National Aquaculture Commission representing the aquaculture industry of northern Chile. He was also chair and advisory member of several industry councils, committees, associations, and professional organizations. Vittorio is also experienced in fish stock assessment and participated in numerous seafood-related research projects in Chile, delivering scientific and technical reports and publications. Vittorio is fluent in English, Spanish and Italian.

In shellfish production, Vittorio has designed, built, managed and improved production systems for hatcheries, nurseries and grow-out operations, and he has extensive experience with the full-cycle production of scallops, mussels, oysters and abalone. He has led high-performance teams of multidisciplinary professionals. Vittorio is also experienced in shipbuilding and marine repair operations. He has expert knowledge about seafood processing under strict quality management plans for local and international markets including Canada, USA, EU, Japan and Latin America.

In Canada since 2011, Vittorio has been actively involved in the aquaculture industry, managing shellfish production operations and providing consulting services as founding partner of Newaqua Solutions. He has developed a comprehensive knowledge of Canadian and BC aquaculture regulations, licensing and tenure application processes, and built excellent relationships with government regulatory and development agencies, indigenous groups, and other stakeholders. Vittorio is also experienced in the BC regulatory environment for marinas and dock installations. Vittorio was the aquaculture expert on the Advisory Committee at the Marine Plan Partnership for the North Pacific Coast for the BC government and Coastal First Nations.

Vittorio’s areas of expertise:

  • Fully integrated Shellfish Production
  • Shellfish Hatchery Design & Operation
  • Deepwater & Land-based Shellfish Farm Design & Operation
  • Shellfish Processing Plant Design & Operation
  • Seafood Traceability & Food Safety
  • Shellfish Inventory Audits & Valuation
  • Fish Stock Assessments
  • Equipment Selection & Sourcing
  • Workboat Design
  • Aquaculture Regulations & Licensing
  • Permitting for Marinas & Docks
  • Government Liaison
  • Business Planning
  • Investment Advice
  • Project Management
  • Talent Recruiting (Spanish & English)