Book “The Ocean Doctor” for Your Next Event
Dr. David E. Guggenheim is a marine scientist, conservation policy specialist, submarine pilot, ocean explorer, filmmaker, author and educator. He is president and founder of the Washington, DC-based nonprofit organization, Ocean Doctor. Guggenheim directs Cuba Conservancy — an Ocean Doctor Program, and is in his 15th year leading research and conservation efforts in Cuba focused on coral reefs and sea turtles, a joint effort with the University of Havana. His work was recently featured on 60 Minutes. Guggenheim led the formation of the Trinational Initiative for Marine Science & Conservation in the Gulf of Mexico & Western Caribbean, a major project to elevate collaboration in marine science and conservation among Cuba, Mexico and the U.S. to a new level. As an ocean explorer, Guggenheim piloted the first-ever manned submersible dives into the world’s largest underwater canyons in the Bering Sea as a scientific advisor to Greenpeace. He was inducted into the Explorers Club as a National Fellow in 2008. Guggenheim hosts The Ocean Doctor Radio Show and appears frequently on TV and radio. In 2013, Guggenheim produced his first documentary film, Disaster at Nightingale: How Tragedy Found the World’s Remotest Island, detailing a little-known tragedy in the South Atlantic that killed thousands of endangered Northern Rockhopper penguins. An accomplished public speaker, Dr. Guggenheim offers a unique perspective — from a tiny submarine 2,000 feet beneath Alaska’s Bering Sea to the hallways of Washington, DC — on the wonder of the oceans around us and the critical issues they now face. In early 2009, Dr. Guggenheim embarked on a special “expedition” to deliver speeches to tens of thousands of students in all 50 U.S. states, the Ocean Doctor’s “50 Years – 50 States – 50 Speeches” Expedition. In Washington, DC, Dr. Guggenheim is a leader in conservation policy, on important issues including global warming, coral reefs, sustainable seafood, and environmental education and is actively involved in international environmental issues. Read Dr. Guggenheim’s full biography…
An Authority and Spokesperson
Dr. Guggenheim is a regular spokesperson on ocean issues and has been featured on 60 Minutes, ABC’s Good Morning America, CNN, MSNBC, BBC, NPR, National Geographic Today, and in the New York Times among many others. He is considered an objective, reliable and articulate authority on a wide range of environmental issues, especially the oceans. See a complete list of Dr. Guggenheim’s recent media appearances…
Our work in Cuba’s “Gardens of the Queen” was featured on an award-winning segment of the CBS news program, 60 Minutes hosted by Anderson Cooper.
A Captivating Multimedia Event
With incredible video and imagery, the Ocean Doctor takes your audience on an unforgettable journey thousands of feet below the ocean’s surface, to the wilds of Cuba, and into the imaginations of today’s deep-sea technology inventors.
Dr. Guggenheim speaks to a wide range of audiences at a wide range of events, including college and university events, charity events, business meetings and conferences, for groups ranging from 20 to 2,000, kindergarten to seniors.
His programs are captivating and inspirational, capturing the wonder of the oceans and the magic of discovery while also providing an important message about the state of our oceans and their future. Guggenheim draws from his personal accounts around the world, illustrating his personal adventures and experiences with his stunning photographs and underwater videos set to music. Dr. Guggenheim is fluent in Spanish and gives presentations in Spanish as well as English.
Get a Quote
For a free, no-obligation quote for your speaking event, please complete the form below. Speaking fees vary depending on travel time, preparation effort, and participation in additional activities. A discounted rate is provided for schools and nonprofit organizations. Please fill out the form below or give us a call at +1 (202) 695-2550.
Selected Speech Topics
Lessons from the DEEP: What the Oceans Are Telling Us and Why it Matters
From the hallways of Washington, DC to thousands of feet below the sea, get a unique perspective on our oceans including their threats and what is being done to reverse their decline. Learn how our perspectives on the oceans have changed over the past 50 years and, despite our species’ journey into space, how little we actually know about the salt-water-covered portion of our own planet.
A Living Time Machine: Cuba’s Spectacular Ocean Ecosystems and the Hope They Offer the World
Guggenheim directs Cuba Conservancy — an Ocean Doctor Program, and is in his 14th year leading research and conservation efforts in Cuba focused on coral reefs, a joint effort with the University of Havana. His work was recently featured on 60 Minutes with Anderson Cooper, on the PBS Nature series and on NPR. In a world of corals dead and dying, Cuba’s marine ecosystems are spectacularly healthy, a Jurassic Park-like experience teeming with endangered species seldom seen elsewhere in the Caribbean, including bountiful sharks and grouper. We visit Gardens of the Queen, named by Christopher Columbus 500 years ago to honor Queen Isabella — truly a living time machine — and explore why this area is so healthy and what the implications are for ocean ecosystems around the world.
Beneath the Deadliest Catch: The View from 2,000 Feet Below the Bering Sea
Take a ride in the DeepWorker submersible and learn how to pilot this amazing little sub. Dr. Guggenheim provides a brief history of ocean exploration, some other notable submarines, and then takes the audience on a journey to Alaska’s Bering Sea to explore deepwater corals living at 2,000 feet — the oldest animals living today. Dr. Guggenheim piloted the first manned submersible dive into the largest underwater canyons in the world: Pribolof Canyon and Zhemchug Canyon, both in the Bering Sea. Dr. Guggenheim will discuss how important deep sea ecosystems and corals are, how they are being destroyed by the ton and why exploration of the deep, dark waters of the world holds the key to their survival.
Disaster at Nightingale: How Tragedy Found the World’s Remotest Island
In 2011, Dr. Guggenheim was a lecturer aboard the MS Prince Albert II, transiting from tip of South America to the tip of South Africa, and witnessed the worst environmental disaster of his life. A soybean bulk carrier slammed into Nightingale Island, part of the most remote inhabited island group in the world, Tristan da Cunha. He produced a 25-minute documentary, Disaster at Nightingale, which premiered in 2013, detailing this disaster and how it killed thousands of endangered Northern Rockhopper penguins. The film has started an important conversation in Washington, DC and elsewhere about the risks to remote places around the world that harbor some of the planet’s most treasured wildlife. Dr. Guggenheim will present the film, discuss its production and ongoing efforts to save penguins in the South Atlantic and around the world.
Climate Change & Our Oceans: What’s at Stake
The world is warming rapidly. What is in store for our oceans and what does it mean for us? Equally serious yet getting very little attention is climate change’s “evil twin” — acid oceans — and why the end could be near for most of the coral reefs on earth this century. The presentation includes excerpts from Dr. Guggenheim’s testimony before the Scottish Parliament. It also examines reasons for hope in Cuba and learn how we all can work together to solve the problems caused by these terrible twins.
Lessons from the Gulf: The BP Deepwater Horizon Disaster
What have we learned from the BP disaster? See the events of the disaster unfold through the lens of the conservation community, working to prevent a major international incident with Cuba, organizing the scientific community against the use of chemical dispersants, and working to help communities in the Gulf recover. Are we ready for another blowout? And what about the Arctic? Dr. Guggenheim’s work in the Gulf has been featured on Good Morning America, MSNBC and PBS Newshour.
Which Fish Should I Eat? The Future of Fish, Our Health and Our Oceans
Industrial fishing is one of the most destructive forces impacting the oceans today. By shifting their consumption to sustainably-caught or sustainably-farmed fish, consumers have the power to make a difference. But choosing the right fish to eat is difficult for the consumer, either from a conservation or a health perspective. We hear eating fish is good for you, but eating too much can be harmful due to mercury and other contaminants. Dr. Guggenheim simplifies these complex issues, provides easy-to-follow guidance and gives a peek at the future of fish: land-based, high-tech sustainable fish farms.
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Selected Speech Titles - Dr. David E Guggenheim (200.9 KiB)
- Featured Speaker: Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital: Love and Hope Among Caribbean Reefs, Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, Washington, DC (2015)
- Featured Speaker: Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital: Frozen in Time: Cuba’s Pristine Coral Reefs and Their Future After the Embargo, Gala Theatre, Washington, DC (2015)
- Featured Speaker: BLUE Ocean Film Festival: Screening of Disaster at Nightingale: How Disaster Found the World’s Remotest Island, St. Petersburg, Florida (2014)
- Featured Speaker: Columbia University, Graduate School of Journalism, Dart Center for Journalism & Trauma: Covering Cuba in an Era of Change, New York (2014)
- Featured Speaker: Omaha Henry Doorly Zoo: Lessons from the DEEP, Omaha, Nebraska (2014)
- Featured Speaker: The Explorers Club: A Taste of Cuba, New York (2014)
- Featured Speaker: EcoCinema 2014 Film Festival: Screening of Disaster at Nightingale: How Disaster Found the World’s Remotest Island, Tel-Aviv, Israel (2014)
- Featured Speaker: The Explorers Club: Advancing Collaboration between the U.S. and Cuba in Marine Science and Conservation, New York (2014)
- Featured Speaker: Center for International Policy/Ocean Doctor: Advancing Collaboration between the U.S. and Cuba in Marine Science and Conservation, Washington, DC (2014)
- Featured Speaker: Earth Day 2014: Whales at the White House, Washington, DC (2014)
- Featured Speaker: SCUBA & H2O Adventure Show 2014: Seattle, Washington (2014)
- Featured Speaker: Beneath the Sea: New Jersey (2014)
- Featured Speaker: Boston Sea Rovers: Boston, Massachusetts (2014)
- Panelist: New York Times Travel Show 2014: Outlook for Travel to Cuba, New York (2014)
- Featured Speaker: Colorado Ocean Coalition: Cuba, Denver, Colorado (2014)
- Featured Speaker: Our World Underwater: Cuba Diving, Chicago, Illinois (2014)
- Keynote Speaker: GOED Exchange 2014, Global Organization for EPA and DHA Omega-3, Salt Lake City, Utah (2014)
- Guest Lecturer: Vessel The World (2014)
- Panelist: Blue Beyond Borders – Sea Change Through Science & Art: A Hurricane Sandy Fundraiser, New York, NY (2012)
- Featured Speaker: Cuba’s Gardens of the Queen: A Living Time Machine and Hope for the Future of the World’s Coral Reefs at DEMA 2012 – Las Vegas, Nevada (2012)
- Featured Speaker: Fall Film Series, Center for Environmental Filmmaking, School of Communication, American University, Washington, DC (2012)
- Featured Speaker: BLUE Ocean Film Festival, Monterey, California (2012)
- Panelist: Social Media Week 2012: Is It Getting Hot In Here? Considering Social Media’s Impact on Climate Change New York City (2012)
- Keynote Speaker: World Affairs Council of Western Michigan: Great Decisions Lecture Series. Grand Rapids, Michigan (2012)
- Keynote Speaker: 27th Annual Meeting, Alliance of New Jersey Environmental Educators: Exploring Our Blue Planet Princeton, New Jersey (2012)
- Featured Speaker: 37th Annual Hefner Lecture, Miami University, Oxford, Ohio (2011)
- Keynote Speaker: Sea and Learn on Saba, Netherlands Antilles (2011)
- Featured Speaker: Public Lecture, Friends Select School, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (2011)
- Featured Speaker: Members Dinner, The Explorers Club, New York (2011)
- Keynote Speaker: Dominican Republic Environmental Film Festival, Santo Domingo (2011)
- Keynote Speaker: Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital, Washington, DC (2011)
- Lecturer: Cape-to-Cape Expedition, Vessel Prince Albert II, Silversea Line (2011)
- Keynote Speaker: Environment and Land Use Law Conference, Florida (2010)
- Keynote Speaker: World Science Festival: Illuminating the Abyss: The Unknown Ocean, New York (2010)
- Featured Speaker: Dr. Bernard & Rose Susan Hirschhorn Behrend Lecture, Rodeph Shalom, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (2010)
- Featured Speaker: Campus-wide Lecture, Mississippi State University (2010)
- Featured Speaker: Public Lecture, Orlando Public Library, Orlando, Florida (2009)
- Keynote Speaker: Scottish Parliament: Climate Change: Getting it Right – Edinburgh, Scotland (2009)
- Featured Speaker: 50 Years – 50 States – 50 Speeches: A 50-state speaking tour to more than 100 elementary, middle and high schools, colleges and universities across the U.S. (2009-date)
- Keynote Speaker: Ontario Ministry of the Environment Annual Conference. Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada (2008)
- Keynote Speaker: First Annual Coral Reef Symposium – San Juan, Puerto Rico (2007)
- Keynote Speaker: 29th Annual Conference – Florida Association for Water Quality Control (2006)
- Keynote Speaker: World Oceans Day Event – University of Havana, Cuba (2006)
- Featured Speaker: Ben Franklin Global Forum – School Outreach Programs, Philadelphia (2006)
- Featured Speaker: Naples Underwater Film Festival (2006)
- Featured Speaker: Dive into Ocean Careers, Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve (2005-2006)
- Keynote Speaker and Lecturer: University of Costa Rica, San Jose (2004)
Wow, David, you did a terrific job last night! I could tell from all the comments I heard afterwards what a big and positive impression you made on everyone in the audience. Everybody loved your presentation and found it fascinating. You were eloquent, informative, and persuasive.
We’ve just completed an amazing two-day visit by Dr. Guggenheim! He spoke to elementary students; college students and faculty; and a large general audience (where he received a standing ovation). Our varied audiences totaled into the several hundreds.We were particularly taken with how well he relates to young people. We gathered a group of 150 6th-graders from our public school system for his presentation. He gave them an exciting program, finishing by teaching them how to “drive” his min-sub — brilliant!) — they all raised their hands when Dr. G asked if they wanted to become scientists! Every school district in the United States needs Dr. G to come speak and motivate their students to go into the hard sciences. Our Council and community members think that he was one of the best speakers they’ve heard, and they are quite particular, as we bring in national experts throughout the year — we have a very active speakers program.Dr. Guggenheim is extremely gracious and generous with his time. We truly enjoyed his short visit with us and can’t wait to bring him back! Don’t hesitate to contact us if you would like any more testimonial. I’ve been bringing in speakers for over 15 years and he is one of the best!
Dr. Guggenheim was an invaluable contributor to our annual program. His engaging and entertaining presentation taught our community about the fragility of the world’s oceans, what we can do to protect them, and why it is essential to do so. He gave our community the necessary tools to address local environmental issues with our government to ensure regulations are put in place to protect our environment.