The World Food Prize Foundation

2019 Borlaug Dialogue Speakers

Mr. David Festa

Senior Vice President, Ecosystems, Environmental Defense Fund

David Festa is an expert on ecosystem resilience and has a long track record of bringing diverse stakeholders together to meet growing needs for food, water and infrastructure in ways that benefit the environment and the economy. As vice president of Environmental Defense Fund’s Ecosystems Program, David oversees initiatives to: reverse habitat loss on working lands; eliminate fertilizer pollution from agriculture; ensure resilient water supply in the American West, and restore coastal ecosystems.

David previously led EDF's Oceans program, where he ignited a sea change in the way fisheries are managed by winning approval for an incentives-based system called catch shares.

David earned a master’s degree in public policy from Harvard. He served as policy director in the Department of Commerce during the Clinton administration and as part of the Obama transition team. David began his career as a correspondent for The Economist.

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