The Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries (MarineFisheries) is seeking interested individuals for nomination to vacant seats on several Advisory Panels to the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC). The 15 Atlantic coastal states formed the Commission in 1942 to assist in managing and conserving their shared coastal resources. The Advisory Panels provide input to the Commission’s Management Boards during the development, implementation, and review of interstate fishery management plans.

The Advisory Panels are species-specific and composed of one or more representatives from each state in the species’ management unit. Massachusetts’ allocation of Panel member seats – both the number and type (i.e., user group) – is representative of the magnitude and make-up of the fisheries off the Commonwealth’s coast. Advisors are responsible for representing their state and particular user group during Advisory Panel deliberations. Below are the existing vacancies:

Advisory PanelVacancies
American EelRecreational Seat
Atlantic MenhadenRecreational Seat
Coastal Sharks*Commercial Seat, Recreational Seat
Northern ShrimpProcessor Seat, Commercial Seat
Summer FlounderRecreational Seat
Winter FlounderCommercial Seat

Individuals interested in being an Advisor should submit a request to be considered for one (or more) of the vacancies, the reason for their interest, and documentation of their background and expertise within the fishery(ies) of application. It is advised that such individuals first read the ASMFC’s Advisory Primer and understand the responsibilities and time commitment required of Advisory Panel members. Applications will be reviewed by Massachusetts’ delegation to the ASMFC; any resulting nominations must be approved by the relevant species Management Board.

Applications should be addressed to MarineFisheries Director Paul Diodati at the above address. For questions or to submit an application by email, please contact Nichola Meserve at (617) 626-1531 or Applications will be reviewed upon receipt and nominations made as suitable candidates are identified.

*Shark species include: Atlantic sharpnose, finetooth, blacknose, bonnethead, silky, tiger, blacktip, spinner, bull, lemon, nurse, scalloped hammerhead, great hammerhead, smooth hammerhead, shortfin mako, porbeagle, common thresher, oceanic whitetip, blue, smooth dogfish, sand tiger, bigeye sand tiger, whale, basking, white, dusky, bignose, Galapagos, night, reef, narrowtooth, Caribbean sharpnose, smalltail, Atlantic angel, longfin mako, bigeye thresher, sharpnose sevengill, bluntnose sixgill, bigeye sixgill, and sandbar.