Mid-Atlantic Committee on the Ocean

MACO is a committee established by MARCO to foster collaboration among states, federal agencies, the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (MAFMC), and federally recognized tribes, and to engage stakeholders. The purpose of MACO is to enhance the vitality of the region’s ocean ecosystem and economy through increased communication and collaboration.


  • Provide a venue for ongoing regional information sharing and coordination about the Mid-Atlantic’s ocean ecosystem and economy;
  • Generate a deeper understanding and awareness of state, federal, tribal and regional fisheries management entities’  programs and other activities  affecting  ocean waters off the Mid-Atlantic;
  • Identify and pursue, where appropriate, opportunities for collaboration on regional ocean issues;
  • Generate and maintain a list of contacts engaged in ocean planning to facilitate communication across the region;
  • Identify ways to enhance federal data sharing and support for the Mid-Atlantic Ocean Data Portal to inform ocean planning and management; and
  • Engage stakeholders in learning about, identifying and responding to regional ocean issues.

The Mid-Atlantic Ocean Forum

Committee members will convene an annual Mid-Atlantic Ocean Forum as a venue for regional information sharing, coordination and collaboration, and to enhance the region’s ability to leverage existing efforts and information across multiple levels of government, federally recognized tribes, non-governmental entities and other stakeholders. The information and presentations discussed and shared through the Forum will inform the Committee and participants about potential areas to take future action, generate a deeper understanding and awareness of member priorities and policy changes/enhancements that may affect regional planning (e.g. funding, data, research, projects, best practices identified in other regions), and identify areas for more intensive coordination.

MACO Participation

State: Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Virginia

Federal: Current federal participants include but are not limited to the Department of Commerce; the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration); the Department of the Interior through the US Geological Survey, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Fish and Wildlife Service, and National Parks Service; the Department of Agriculture through the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service; the Department of Defense through the Joint Command, Navy, and/or Army Corps of Engineers; the Department of Homeland Security, US Coast Guard; the Environmental Protection Agency; the Department of Transportation Maritime Administration; and the Department of Energy.

Tribal: Shinnecock Indian Nation

Regional: The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council

Steering Committee

  • Kevin Hassell (Chair)
    New Jersey
  • Laura McKay
  • Mike Snyder
    New York
  • Darryl Francois
    Bureau of Ocean Energy Management
  • Roselle (Henn) Stern
    US Army Corps of Engineers
  • Darlene Finch
    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
  • Kelsey Leonard
    Shinnecock Indian Nation
  • Jessica Coakley
    Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council

Work Groups & Collaborative Efforts

MARCO and MACO collaborate with governmental agencies, tribal nations and many other interested stakeholders through a series of specially focused work groups on marine debris, ocean acidification, ocean mapping and data, non-consumptive recreation, and offshore renewable energy. More information can be found on the work groups page.

Stakeholder Engagement & Upcoming Events

MACO has developed a stakeholder engagement plan that outlines a range of approaches it will take to work and communicate with stakeholders, partner organizations and members of the public. Learn more here.

The following is a list of public events or activities organized by MACO or work groups in which MARCO participates. Check the MARCO Event Calendar for other events of interest or email info@midatlanticocean.org for more information.

Additional Resources

For More Information

Questions or comments about the Mid-Atlantic Committee on the Ocean may be directed to info@midatlanticocean.org.