Emily Penn | Expedition Leader, Skipper, Artist and Oceans Advocate
Emily Penn is an expedition leader, skipper, artist and oceans advocate who has extensive exploration experience in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. She is also a director at Pangaea Exploration, and founder at eXXpedition. In 2010 Emily started work with the 5 Gyres Institute in California on the first comprehensive study of plastic in the world’s oceans. At aged 23, she became the first woman to earn the title of Yachtmaster of the Year, awarded by HRH Princess Royal in recognition of Emily’s skills and expertise as a skipper. Emily has gone on to lead several scientific expeditions on Pangaea’s 72ft sailing vessel Sea Dragon, with Oceanographic Institutes Scripps and Woods Hole, as well as NOAA and UNEP.
My Definition Of Success | Success for me is having the freedom to wake up every morning and work on projects I am most passionate about. I grew up with the typical ‘western’ idea that getting a well-paid job was the biggest symbol of success but that has been replaced with the idea of living a life of meaning being more important.
I Am Driven By | The desire to solve problems – my architect wired brain sees every issue as a challenge to design and create a system to fulfill the need.
My Highlights | Taking the biofuelled record breaking powerboat, Earthrace, around the world on a campaign to promote alternative fuels; organising the largest ever Pacific clean-up campaign, motivating 3,000 people to collect 56 tonnes of rubbish in a single day; and setting up global conservation organisation Pangaea Explorations www.panexplore.com to enable scientists and everyday individuals to reach the most remote parts of our planet.
Communication Advice |
1. Simplify, be able to sum up what you do in one sentence.
2. Use videos, images, keywords to describe and back up what you do.
Characteristics Of Success | Love what you do, put 100% into achieving it. Share your enthusiasm and excitement with everyone you meet
Performing At My Peak | Rest when you can! I aim to sleep for 9 hours a night during ‘downtime’ between expeditions.
Keep Moving | Sometimes I feel a bit like I’m a fish – must have water rushing over my gills in order to stay alive. Keeping moving into new and intriguing surroundings keeps me inspired and forces me to ask new questions and grow.
The Best Advice I’ve Ever Received | Always plan your next two strategic moves. I don’t like to make plans, for fear of missing an opportunity, but in recent years I’ve been mentored to think more about the bigger picture by setting major goals and somehow the stepping-stones along the way start falling into place.
I Am Inspired By | Much of my inspiration is sparked by conversation with the fascinating and diverse mix of strangers I’ve met along the way. While it’s hard to pinpoint specific people, certainly my time spent in New Zealand was pivotal. The Maori phrase (coined by Pete Bethune of Earthrace) “Kia Kaha, Kia Mana” – roughly translated as “Be strong and make a stand for what you believe in” – urged me to go against the norm and dedicate my life to what I see as important.
Useful Links |