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President's Column March 2024

LACQUA 24 “Aquaculture in Latin America: innovation and sustainability for a global aquaculture,” is approaching and we are very enthusiastic about the kind of event that is taking shape. Our two Board Directors Dr. Adriana Muñoz in the academics field, and Dr. Paola Barato also in the academics but mainly in the industry sector, and our Secretariat Carolina Amezquita have finished developing a wonderful program. Combined events will be the XI Colombian Congress of Aquaculture, and the meeting of the Latin American Association of Native Fish Culture. Based in South America, we have some of the more important commercial cultures of native fish in the continent. And with a focus on sustainability, having this event combined with LACQUA gives the opportunity to underline the role of native species for commercial aquaculture and to recognize the socioeconomic impacts of this sector. A new, energetic part of this team is our Board’s Student Representative, Angelica Barrera. She is having a full agenda coordinating students among different Universities, many of them volunteering as helpers for the Conference.

Maria Angelica, together with Dra. Laura Silva Ledezma, our Board Secretary, have taken on the task of reviving our social media presence. We invite you to visit our Facebook and Instagram sites and see not only current LACC news, but also wonderful material that both are producing. Congratulations ladies!

Our Chapter will renew three Board positions this year: President-elect, treasurer and one director. We have assembled such a wonderful team for the 2 years of my Presidency, and I can only be thankful to Ricardo Vieira, Luis Agraz and Paola Barato for their work. In LACQUA 24, I step down as President and become Past-President, replacing our lovely Dra. Maria Celia Portella. Maria Celia has already been WAS President, and she brought to the Chapter her experience and advice, always of high value. The deadline for nominations for the next board has passed and we are so pleased to have excellent candidates. Mainly, we will maintain country diversity, which has been my main goal since I took over as President. We must include representatives from as many countries in our region as possible, since we have so many experts and world leaders. Actually, at this moment our Board has a majority of women (5 including our Student Representative, to 3 men), and we will reinforce the inclusion of minorities going forward.

Our ballot for this year, to be voted on by our membership, looks as follows:

  • President-elect: Dr. Marcelo Shei (Brasil), Dra. Paola Barato (Colombia)
  • Treasurer: Dr. Jesaias Costa (Brasil)
  • Director: Dr. Juli-Anne Russo (Jamaica), Dr. Marisol Morales-Covarrubias (Mexico)

Please wait for our news, and vote for your candidates.

Finally, we have discussed in our Chapter the necessity for incorporating, in a better way, the Youth. Which is not a reference to our Student Representative, but to the young professionals in Latin America and the Caribbean that are not really represented in our Chapter. This means working in another level with the industry, and we are already planning a few actions.

We hope to see all of you in Medellín, Colombia, September 24-27 for LACQUA 2024!!!!
— Francisco Javier Martinez Cordero, President