Ambassadors & Advisors

Individuals destined to pursue the great human adventure and who embody the pioneering spirit of the 21st century

H.S.H Prince Albert II of Monaco

«The SeaOrbiter is an extraordinary tool which will give the public a new perspective of the oceans and the underwater environment. A high-tech vessel for oceanic exploration, unique in the world, it will allow each and every one of us to dive for an exceptional close-up view of this still largely unknown world for periods never before achieved.».

Dan GOLDIN - Former NASA administrator and President of the Intellisis Corporation

A NASA administrator from 1992 to 2001, Daniel S. Goldin is the Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Intellisis Corporation, a company developing a new generation of intelligent information systems - innovative technology combining biology, physics and engineering.

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Advisor for US Strategy, International Scientific Strategy and Relations with the Space Agencies +
"SeaOrbiter provides exciting opportunities for exploring the last truly unknown frontier on Planet Earth, our oceans. A fleet of these advanced research platforms will enable broad access to new knowledge and contribute to practical applications, major innovations and improved stewardship of the oceans for enhancing the quality of life for all of humanity. SeaOrbiter also offers astronauts an unconstrained training platform that could be used to simulate many of the demanding and complex operating conditions of life in a confined and isolated environment that they may encounter on future space missions.”

Charles KENNEL - Member of the US National Academy of Sciences

Following studies in astrophysics at Harvard and Princeton Universities, Charles Kennel became an Associate Administrator of NASA for Earth Sciences and chaired the Department of Physics at the University of California, becoming Executive Vice Chancellor of that department. Kennel was then director of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography and Vice-chancellor of Marine Sciences at the University of California in San Diego from 1998 to 2006. He is currently an Emeritus Professor at Scripps, an emeritus member of Christ’s College at Cambridge University, and Chairman of the Space Studies Board of the US National Academy of Sciences of which he is a member. Kennel is also a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society and the International Astronautical Federation.

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Advisor for Scientific Research +
"SeaOrbiter is an International Space Station of the Seas, a floating laboratory where aquanauts share the adventure of scientific exploration and scientists explore the amazing diversity of life in the world ocean. It also constitutes the perfect tool to better understand its incredible complexity and its intimate relationship with the atmosphere.”

Sylvia EARL - National Geographic Explorer in Residence

A world renowned American oceanographer and highly accomplished explorer for many years, Sylvia Earle became the chief scientist at NOAA, the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. She is a founding member of the DOER (Deep Ocean Exploration and Research) organization which works to improve marine and subsea engineering, and is also an explorer for the National Geographic Society.

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Advisor for Oceanic Exploration +
"SeaOrbiter is the only vehicle in the world to allow continuous observation of the ocean and its abysses. SeaOrbiter enables us to discover new species, new seascapes, new possibilities and will stimulate passions and vocations among explorers and adventurers over the world."

Jean Loup CHRETIEN - Astronaut and Vice-President of Tietronix

The first French astronaut in space, Jean-Loup Chrétien has made three space flights, two with Russia and one with NASA on board the space shuttle Atlantis. Assistant Director of NASA ISS expeditions and Assistant Technical Director at the Johnson Space Centre, Jean-Loup Chrétien established the first link between the SeaOrbiter project and space agencies, NASA in particular.

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Space Advisor +
"As a spacecraft on its way to the unknown, leaving for outer space whose mysteries call us with so much power, SeaOrbiter will take a journey to another unknown, the immensity of the sea and all its secrets. The sea is our victim even though it is our craddle. Quietness, method and respect for nature and ocean will be the conditions of the SeaOrbiter mission."

Thierry PILENKO - President and CEO of Technip

Before joining Technip in 2007, Thierry Pilenko was the President and CEO of Veritas DGC, a geophysical service company based in Houston. Previously, Thierry Pilenko occupied several managerial and executive positions at Schlumberger, a company he joined in 1984 as a geologist. He gained extensive international experience in Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Asia before becoming the President of Schlumberger GeoQuest in Houston, and then General Manager of SchlumbergerSema in Paris where he stayed until 2004. Thierry Pilenko is a graduate of the Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Géologie of Nancy (1981) and the IFP (1982). He serves on the Board of Hercules Offshore (United States). Since April 2012, Thierry Pilenko has also been a member of the Supervisory Board of Peugeot S.A. (France).

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Advisor for Industrial Strategy +
"SeaOrbiter is both a technological challenge and a feat of architecture and engineering, especially submarine engineering. Because of its innovation in all of these areas, SeaOrbiter provides a new exploratory approach to the ocean and can pave the way to a rational exploitation of its resources, especially those found in the abysses, while upholding the principles of sustainable development."

Jean-François CLERVOY - Astronaut and CEO of Novespace

A senior astronaut at ESA having travelled in space three times, including the final flight aboard the space shuttle Discovery to repair the Hubble telescope, Jean-François Clervoy is the CEO of Novespace, a company organizing parabolic flight campaigns on board the A300 ZERO-G for technological investigation and scientific research of weightless state. He is in charge of the coordination between the SeaOrbiter program and space agencies.

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Advisor for Activities in Space and Extreme Environments +
"SeaOrbiter belongs to the ocean, like the ISS belongs to space. Freed from any boundaries, SeaOrbiter is a means to explore, learn and dream, thus enhancing the future of humanity."

Jean-Michel COUSTEAU - President of the Ocean Futures Society

For more than 40 years Jean-Michel Cousteau - explorer, environmentalist, educator and film producer – has devoted his life to sharing people of all nations his passion and concern for our water planet. The eldest son of Jacques-Yves Cousteau, he was introduced at a very young age to diving, oceanography, environmental protection and media communications. On the Calypso expeditions he was responsible for logistics; he was Vice-President of the Cousteau Society for 20 years. In 1999, he founded the Ocean Futures Society, a marine conservation and education association, which organizes educational programs, carries out research and seeks to establish an ethical environmental conservation policy. An ardent campaigner, he is also the current President of Green Cross France et Territoires, and Co-President of the World Ocean Network.

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Advisor +
“SeaOrbiter is the first of its kind new generation vessel that gives people a new perspective on the undersea world. Its original design and observation capabilities will give each one of us a chance to dive in mid ocean with an intimacy and for periods never before achieved. From this new adventure, SeaOrbiter will be able to present compelling evidence for its scientific arguments and communicate more persuasively in its vast educational project to raise awareness and promote the vital task of marine conservation. Never since the great Cousteau adventure, has there been such unique opportunity to reveal and draw people’s attention to the fragility and indeed the richness of this environment, in which there is still so much to be discovered.”

Francis VALLAT - Chairman and co-founder of the European Network of Maritime Clusters, Honorary Chairman and Founder of the Cluster Maritime Français

A graduate in economics, law and literature, Francis Vallat was a renowned oil tanker ship-owner for 32 years (in 1990 he publicly demanded the authorities to declare war on substandard “dust-bin” ships). Francis Vallat also chaired the French Institute of the Sea for 10 years. He established the French Maritime Cluster (an umbrella organization of 260 maritime companies and professional associations) and chairs the European Network of Maritime Clusters. A long-time advocate of maritime safety, he has represented France in the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) since 2002 (he chaired the Agency in 2005, and was its Vice-President from 2002 until 2008).

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Advisor for the Maritime Sector +
"Our country is on the verge of having a flagship project, Flag Bearer for Sustainable Development, a great French project with a global vocation. This is a wonderfully symbolic universal project of French industrial know-how, by its design, aesthetics and technology."

Gilles BOEUF - President of the National Museum of Natural History in Paris

Gilles Boeuf is a full time professor at the Pierre & Marie Curie University (UPMC), he is also working at the Oceanological Observatory in Banyuls-sur-Mer, where he is developing his research together with the research unit "Integrative Biology of Marine Organisms" (UPMC and CNRS). Since 2009, he is the President of the National Museum of Natural History in Paris. He is a member of the Scientific Council of Natural Patrimony and Biodiversity of the Ministry of Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy, also a part of the Advisory Board of Protected Marine Areas of the Scientific Center of Monaco, and a member of the Bureau of the Integovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). He is a representative of the French Commission of UNESCO.

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Scientific and Ethics Advisor

Michael MA - Founder & CEO of IndoChine Group

Michael Ma is a graduate in economics and marketing from the University of Wollongong. Founder & CEO of IndoChine Group, he is well-known for his passionate environmentalist and conservationist outlooks. Since its establishment in 1999, sustainability has been a core value of the IndoChine Group. When it comes to its commitment to protect the ocean, IndoChine has never served Shark Fin, Yellowfin Tuna, Bluefin Tuna or Caviar & Sturgeon. In recognition of his leadership and entrepreneurship, Michael Ma is appointed as the Chairman of the Youth4Arctic, Ambassador of Shark Saver, Winner of Green Leadership Award, Winner of the Asia Responsible Entrepreneurial Awards (list non-exhaustive). Additionally, Michael Ma is listed in Forbes Asia’s 48 Heroes of Philanthropy.

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Advisor for Asia

William KWENDE - CEO of Agritech Group

William Kwende, is an African entrepreneur and developer. He received his education in Dakar, Paris and Washington DC, and he graduated with a degree in computer engineering from George Washington University and a DEFL from Georgetown University. William Kwende is a former UN Official with the IOM agency. He was first appointed in Dakar, Senegal covering West and Central Africa, then in Manilla, Philippines, where he covered several countries of South-East Asia for 8 years. His experience in development work has helped him formalize AGRITECH's initial concept, which features a mix of profit-making and sustainable development notions.

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Advisor for Africa

Admiral Pierre-François FORISSIER - Former Chief of Staff of the French Navy

An expert in conducting submarine warfare and a nuclear engineer, Pierre-François Forissier has pursued his career as a submariner, which led him to the position of Chief of Staff of the French Navy. He has now returned to civilian life and founded the company “Marine Firminy” that gives advice to Corporate Boards. He is also the Founder and President of the “Sail Training Vessel Association”.

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Advisor

Admiral Olivier LAJOUS - Former Staff Manager of the French Navy

In the French Navy during 38 years, Olivier Lajous navigated 16 years and participated in the resolution of numerous conflicts. In the French Navy, he was the Director of Communications and then the Human Resources Director. Today, he is the President of the “DéciDRH Club” and a speaker in the domains of strategy, ethics, leadership in a crisis situation and human resources management.

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Advisor

Philippe VALLETTE - General Manager of the National Sea Centre NAUSICAA

Philippe Vallette is an oceanographer by profession. He is the General Manager of the National Sea Centre NAUSICAA in Boulogne-sur-Mer, Co-Chair of the World Ocean Network, and the President of the World Festival of Underwater Pictures. His vocation is to inspire people to regard differently the relationship we have, as humans with the ocean, and therefore to reach a better sustainable use of the ocean. In 2011, with NAUSICAA’s teams, he launched a new concept - the ‘Blue Society’. The campaign aims to create a society, which would use marine resources to create a healthy environment and opportunities for a new, sustainable economy and jobs in an ethical way. Based on the main pillars of sustainable development (economy, society and the environment), it also includes cultural and political aspects.

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Advisor for Education, International Organization and the Blue Society

Nardo VINCENTE - Scientific Officer of Paul Ricard Oceanographic Institute

Nardo Vincente is an Emeritus Professor of marine sciences at Aix Marseille University in the Mediterranean Institute of Marine and Terrestrial Biodiversity and Ecology. He has been the Scientific Officer of Paul Ricard Oceanographic Institute on the island of Embiez since 1972; he is also the General Delegate. As a class II professional diver, he has completed in 50 years more than 10,000 dives in the seas around the globe, most notably in the Mediterranean. Since 1998, he is a member of the Academy of Sciences, Letters and Arts of Marseille. Vincente is also the Commander of the Order of Academic Palms, Officer of the National Order of Madagascar, Knight of Maritime Merit, and a member of Tridente d'Oro Accademia di Ustica (Italy).

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Advisor for the Mediterranean

Pierre FROLLA - Multiple-time world record holder in freediving

Pierre Frolla is a freediver from Monaco. Over the recent years, he has become a rightful ambassador of the world of freediving, having held the world record four times (three records for free immersion and one for variable weight). He is also highly regarded in the field of teaching and training.

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Advisor for Educational Programs

Stéphane MIFSUD - Multiple-time World Champion in different disciplines of apnea

Stéphane Mifsud is a French freediver and a multiple-time world champion in different disciplines of apnea. At this this date, he holds the world record of 11’35’’ in static apnea (breath holding underwater). For him being in apnea is the least intrusive way of approaching marine animals, as he becomes the link between the ocean and the earth. Stéphane Mifsud organizes education missions, gives diving lessons and tries to increase awareness on ocean sensitive subjects.

SeaOrbiter Ambassador and Advisor for Apnea Programs