Paulita Bennett-Martin c. 404.825.5176 e. PaulitaBennettMartin@gmail.com
An energetic environmentalist with over ten years of experience in nonprofits and universities, focused on programs that better: Coastal Community Growth | Marine Environments | Sustainable Fisheries | Environmental Justice.
Grassroots Campaign Coordination, Partnerships, Community Engagement, Fieldwork, Project Management, Network Development and Analysis, Monitoring and Evaluation, Research Design, Group and Workshop Facilitation, Strategic Initiatives, Resource Mobilization, Public Speaking, GIS and Cartography, and Media Production
Oceana, May 2018 - Current: Campaigns Organizer, Georgia
In April of 2018 I was recruited by Oceana to become their Georgia representative for US campaigns. In this role I
organize the statewide offshore drilling and seismic testing opposition coalition, coordinating between over ten
organizations, as well as a number of local ocean advocates and volunteers. I also work on the Shark Fin Trade
Elimination Act and advise on fisheries community dynamics. In 2019 I began working on our strategic
implementation team for an international North Atlantic Right Whale campaign. Most of my time in this role with
Oceana is split between, public presentations and outreach, organizing, advocating, and now strategic planning and management of an annual academic intern and a core team of volunteers.
PBM Consulting, June 2017 - Current: Research Management and Project Management
Clients include Emory University - Department of Environmental Studies, Ogeechee Riverkeeper, and Tybee Island Marine Science Center.
One Hundred Miles, Savannah GA, July 2016 - December 2017: Chief of Coastal Advocacy
As the Chief of Coastal Advocacy my role is to be the main public point of contact for a coastal advocacy organization. Seven advocacy programs are managed under my direction, which include Right Whale Conservation, Working Waterfronts Ambassadors, Plastic Pollution Reduction, Jasper Ocean Terminal, Sea Level Rise and Community, along with responding to individual threats to our coast on a case by case basis, such as the Heavy Industrial developments along our coastal bodies of water. This role relies heavily on my ability to build social networks, and convene multi-stakeholder meetings to achieve common goals, and sustain collaborations. On a day to day basis I work between scientists, government, businesses, grass-tops, and grassroots communities. As the first staffer in the Savannah area, I worked remotely to secure the ideal location for a North Coast office, remained motivated and positive in an isolated work environment, and within one year, I on-boarded two new full time staff members, as well as recruited 11 new local program specific volunteer advocates.
Emory University NOAA Research Team, Atlanta and St. Croix, 2016 - 2017: Fisheries Research and Outreach Coordinator
Worked on the largest funded NOAA grant for social research in sustainable fisheries. As the Fisheries Research and Outreach Associate I managed a team of three graduate students, providing weekly reports to the Primary Investigators for the study. My role relied heavily on my ability to build a social network in unfamiliar fisheries communities, including commercial fishers, government agencies, universities, and businesses. I regularly convened discussions and worked to incorporate a wide array of input about needs and concerns, to achieve forward movement on common goals. The work was conducted on the islands of St. Croix, and St. Thomas, where we logged over 1560 field outreach hours, conducting surveys, participatory observations, and in depth interviews. We completed approximately 300 surveys, and over 30 in depth interviews. I was also responsible for creating and maintaining a data base, and providing detailed community profile summaries, for use by a large team of researchers from University of Florida, Emory University, and NOAA.
Emory University Atlanta, 2014 – 2016, Teaching Assistant and Communications
Working for Emory University include two distinct roles, Instructor and Communications. As the teaching assistant to the Chair of the Department of Global Health, my responsibilities included facilitation of 20 students a semester, engaged in applied planning team projects, which address global development challenges. The course, a hands on ‘in practice’ seminar, required preparing discussions, presentations, and attending team meetings to coordinate strengths and personalities in a dynamic graduate level course. In the role of Communications, responsibilities include development of stories for department website, outreach, interviews, and representation of the department at key events.
Oceana Belize, Belize, Central America 2015 Summer Intern
Fieldwork included grassroots campaign activities, community outreach, and marine debris research. We logged over 9000 hours of Citizen Science GIS data collection in the field. I also completed data refinement, analysis and cartography, coordination of citizen science activities, management of community engagement events and the development of awareness materials.
Atlanta BeltLine Inc., Atlanta, 2015-2016 Academic Fellow
I was selected as the 2014/2015 academic year fellow. My position worked directly in support to the Director of Community Planning and Engagement for Atlanta's most prolific smart growth project. This role involved frequent community engagement process, and interaction with civic groups and the general public, various levels of zoning procedures, assistance with projects, and continuous improvement of ABI’s systems. Responsibilities included research of urban planning information/concepts, land use planning (e.g. current and long‐range planning matters and policy issues). In addition I reviewed, edited, and presented content for a 10 Sub‐Area Master Plan for an anticipated plan update. Other responsibilities included, ongoing collaboration with the City of Atlanta and ABI on development and the implementation of zoning applications to development sustainable urban districts within the Atlanta BeltLine Planning Area, coordination with other program disciplines including transportation, project management, design, construction, and housing, and regular community engagement events across the Metro Atlanta area.
GSU Department of Geosciences, 2013 – 2014: Researcher and Community Liaison
Research lab associate, appointed as team lead on research for the Atlanta Botanical Garden and The Conservation Fund. I collaborated in a large team environment to map conservation efforts in 13 city and state parks as well as Atlanta urban parks. Responsibilities included organizing teams and leading fieldwork for a freshmen honors college course, data base design, map design. I worked closely with a large group of stakeholders and was appointed the representative for GSU Department of Geoscience in a series of planning workshops conducted between Fall of 2014 and Spring of 2014. In addition, the operational tasks included scheduling, and work reports.
Association of American Geographers, My Community Our Earth Initiative, Atlanta, 2013 – 2014: Program Ambassador
Collaborated in a small team setting to develop geography education and outreach presentations for high school and introductory college level youth. My responsibilities included coordinating community mapping projects, data collection, community outreach, map design, and literature review focused on participatory, open source maps, and community geography, as well as drafting all final grant reports.
National Science Foundation, 2012: Summer Researcher
Collaborated in a small team setting to complete extensive fieldwork based on developing practical GIS methods for conservation of green space. Other expertise attained: practical identification of ecological systems and plant species, organization and leadership of community meetings, design and development of geographic education and outreach materials, as well as literature review and scholarly writing.
Community Design Center of Atlanta, 2007 – 2009: Operations Manager
Effectively conceptualized, developed and managed core projects, maintained funding secured new support for organization operating expenses. Responsibilities included management of all interns and volunteers. Created campaign approaches to build community knowledge and support for organizations mission. Independently wrote awarded grant applications. Responsible for all daily office operations and liaison to Executive Director, Consultants, and Board Members.
ArcGIS, Microsoft Word, Final Cut Pro, PowerPoint, Excel, Photoshop, and SPSS
Professional Workshops and Training
Monitoring and Evaluation I & II, Grant Writing, Planetary Boundaries, Community Facilitation Training, Development Leadership Institute, Esri Arc GIS, Final Cut Pro X, NOAA SeaGrant Coastal Stewards
Master’s in Development Practices: Emory University, Atlanta, GA. (3.9)
Concentration Certificate: Sustainable Livelihoods and Environments
Bachelor of Arts Geography: Georgia State University, Atlanta, GA. (Summa Cum Laude)
Major: Geography Minor: Film and Media
Gamma Theta Upsilon Honors Society | Georgia State University Honors College | American Geophysical Union