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  • Writer's pictureBen Martens

Emily Coffin, MCFA's Seafood & Fisheries Policy Coordinator

You can email Emily at

MCFA is welcoming a new member to their team. Emily Coffin is a recent graduate of Bowdoin College and a Brunswick native. She grew up on the water, lobstering with her father who fishes full time. She maintains her own commercial lobster license, which was earned over more than a few summers fishing in Harpswell. She has also spent many early mornings picking pogies and hauling up nets. The upper bays of Midcoast Maine hold very special memories, some glorious, some covered in fish guts.

Emily is filling the role of Seafood and Fisheries Policy Coordinator and will eventually be covering the developing policies in the fisheries. For now, she’s learning the ropes and spending time with other members of the MCFA staff to get a handle on the fishing industry beyond tying bait bags and stacking traps. Her goals are to lessen the barriers to entry to understanding fishery policy. As someone who has spent half a lifetime on the other end of fishing rules and regulations, she understands firsthand how taxing it can be.

During her time at Bowdoin, Emily pursued a major in Classics with a concentration in language, specifically in Ancient Greek with an added interest in Mediterranean archaeology. Although niche, she is quickly finding that the ancient Greeks who both tilled their own fields and spoke in political forums have a lot in common with the Maine fishermen who seek a say in fishery policy. Emily also pursued fun and friends at Bowdoin, maintaining a spot on the Women’s Ultimate Frisbee team and playing varsity squash for a year.

Besides sterning for her father, Emily has worked in the fields of an organic vegetable farm in Florida, interned for another fisherman focused organization, and attended an archaeological field school in Greece. Outside of work, she enjoys being outside whether it be hiking, running, cross country skiing, or swimming.

Emily got involved in fishery policy during the summer of 2020, when she garnered a community response to an industrial aquaculture on traditional fishing grounds. The dispute led to a newfound interest in preserving the fisheries for those who steward it best. She sees working for MCFA as a wonderful opportunity because of how in-line and forward thinking the organization is. As a young person with deep roots to the local waters and an eye on the future, Emily is optimistic that the legal side of the fisheries can work with fishermen to pursue viable management and forever fisheries.



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