The Assocciation of Genuine Alaska Pollock Producers (GAPP) has named Bob Desautel its chairman of the board.
Desautel is the co-founder, president, and CEO of Global Seas and Nina Fisheries, companies he formed after decades of fishing in the North Pacific. Under Desautel’s leadership, Global Seas has been able to expand its business operations on the U.S. East Coast via its co-ownership of the seafood processing company Norpel. The company has also made a foray into the maritime research field as owner and operator of the R/V Mt. Mitchell.
Desautel will replace GAPP's former board chair, Mikel Durham, who stepped down as the CEO of American Seafoods in February 2022.
“To say Bob is passionate about wild Alaska pollock would be an understatement,” GAPP CEO Craig Morris said. “He is a true evangelist for the fish and its attributes and has a love for this industry that likely only pales to his love for his wife and kids. Bob is the right chair to take the helm as GAPP enters a new phase to build on the foundation we’ve laid and to hold us accountable to elevate wild Alaska pollock even more in the eyes of the global consumer.”
While Durham was chair, she was strongly influential in securing increased industry investment in GAPP. As new chair, Desautel said he already has plans to redouble those efforts. He will work to arm GAPP with the necessary resources to execute its mission: building awareness of and demand for Alaska pollock.
“It’s been incredible to watch the new GAPP strategic plan come to life over the last several years,” Desautel said. “In conversations with industry, with customers, and with even friends and family, their knowledge of wild Alaska pollock has markedly grown and that’s due in large part to GAPP’s vision and effort to educate and promote the species with product innovation partnerships, marketing, media influencers, and truly understand the consumer’s preferences through proprietary research work.”
Desautel previously served as the chair of GAPP's sustainability committee and has also served in "countless other leadership roles," including the North Pacific Fishing Vessel Owners' Association and United Catcher Boats, GAPP said.
Arctic Storm CEO Doug Christensen will remain the organization's vice chair, secretary, and treasurer, GAPP said.
Photo courtesy of Global Seas