About the Working Group

Illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing is a global problem that threatens ocean ecosystems and sustainable fisheries. It also threatens our economic security and the natural resources that are critical to global food security, and it puts law-abiding fishermen and seafood producers in the United States and abroad at a disadvantage.

The Maritime Security and Fisheries Enforcement (SAFE) Act provides a whole-of-government approach to counter IUU fishing and related threats to maritime security. Section 3551 of the Act requires the establishment of an Interagency Working Group to strengthen maritime security and combat IUU fishing.

The efforts of the U.S. Interagency Working Group on IUU Fishing now sit at the heart of our government’s coordination on tackling IUU fishing practices and setting the conditions where IUU fishing is neither accepted nor commonplace in the future.

Member Agencies

The working group brings together twenty-one agencies for an integrated, federal government-wide response to IUU fishing globally. The group’s chair and deputy chair positions rotate among NOAA, the U.S. Department of State, and the U.S. Coast Guard. NOAA is serving as the first chair. Additional members of the working group include representatives from:

  • National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration
  • U.S. Department of State
  • U.S. Coast Guard
  • Council on Environmental Quality
  • Director of National Intelligence, Representative of
  • National Security Council
  • Office of Management and Budget
  • Office of Science and Technology Policy
  • Office of the U.S. Trade Representative
  • U.S. Agency for International Development
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • U.S. Department of Defense
  • U.S. Department of Homeland Security
  • U.S. Department of Justice
  • U.S. Department of Labor
  • U.S. Department of the Treasury
  • U.S. Federal Trade Commission
  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
  • U.S. Food and Drug Administration
  • U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
  • U.S. Navy

Agency Chairs

Dr. Kelly Kryc, Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Fisheries from the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration, is the current Chair of the Working Group.

Deputy Chairs are Professor Maxine Burkett, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Oceans, Fisheries and Polar Affairs from the Department of State, and Rear Admiral Jo-Ann F. Burdian, Assistant Commandant for Response Policy from the U.S. Coast Guard.