Veta Wade is the Director and Founder of Fish ‘N Fins and works with scientific and local communities toward sustainable ocean conservation. In 1995, following the island’s volcanic eruptions, she was evacuated to the UK. Montserrat’s marine ecosystems were also significantly affected, with over two-thirds of coral reefs smothered in ash. There has been some ecosystem recovery since, and the fishing communities and tourism industry still depend on the island’s marine resources. Despite the link between the ocean and local livelihoods, there is very little understanding of marine conservation, and a prevalent fear of the sea (and sea swimming). Consequently, there is a lack of investment in marine resource management. Veta returned to Montserrat in 2011 to reconnect Montserratians with the ocean. Through Fish ‘N Fins, Veta has founded multiple ocean awareness programs. Now a Darwin Fellow 2022-2024, and part of the 2022-2025 UN Deep Ocean Early Career Researchers Cohort ( DOERs). Veta is currently pursuing her MSc in Marine Vertebrates Ecology and Conservation at the University of Exeter. Veta is currently a member of the Government of Montserrat's Advisory Council on the island's Conservation and Environmental Management Act, (CEMA) and a finalist in the prestigious Global Ocean Awards - Local Hero Category. 2020.
Her studies are focused on the diversity, distribution, and abundance of megafauna on remote, data-limited small islands, and the study of low-cost ocean observation tools in marine management programs. Veta is also interested in identifying how fishers' perspectives and values interact with socioeconomic and ecological changes over time. Veta's work supports collaborative design and research that put equity at its core and improves governance and ocean management on islands.