Meg Caldwell

Advisor, Deputy Director, Oceans, The David and Lucile Packard Foundation

Specialties: Climate Change, Climate Change Adaptation, Coastal and Nearshore Environment, Environmental Law and Policy, Ocean Acidification, Oil Spills, Pacific Nations

Meg Caldwell is a former executive director for the Stanford Center for Ocean Solutions. She is now the deputy director of oceans at the David and Lucile Packard Foundation where she leads the Foundation’s Oceans and Fisheries team in this newly created role within the Conservation and Science Program. Caldwell helps the Foundation manage growth in the scale and ambition of oceans-related grant making, provides strategic direction across subprograms, fosters the increasingly team-oriented approach to this work, and helps to amplify the work of the Foundation and its grantees as a thought leader on ocean conservation issues.

She also directed the Environmental and Natural Resources Law & Policy Program at Stanford Law School, where her research and teaching focuses on the use of science in environmental and marine resource policy development and implementation as well as private and public incentives for natural resource conservation.  She is also an honorary professor in the Global Change Institute at the University of Queensland, Australia.

She served on the California Coastal Commission from 2004-2007 and 2009-2012 including two years as its chairperson. While chair of the Commission, Caldwell also served on the board of the California Coastal Conservancy. Caldwell is a regular in Washington, D.C. and Sacramento alike working with elected officials, ocean and coastal agencies and their stakeholders to tackle major challenges with practical approaches. She has testified in Congress regarding the reauthorization of the National Marine Sanctuaries Act and the ecological and economic impacts of the BP Deepwater Horizon oil disaster. She also served as a senior consultant to the National Commissions on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling, providing both oral testimony and written reports to the Commission on recommendations to reform federal oversight of offshore exploration and drilling. From 2004 to 2011, she was a member of the California Marine Life Protection Act Blue Ribbon Task Force for the central, north central, south and north coasts.  Her work with the Task Force helped the State of California establish the largest network of marine protected areas in the nation.

Before joining the Stanford Law School faculty in 1994, Caldwell was an instructor at San Jose State University and the University of California, Davis Extension; counsel for MicroCLEAN, Inc.; a member of the City of Saratoga Planning Commission; and an associate in the environmental law group of McCutchen, Doyle, Brown & Enersen. She earned her B.S. in business administration (with an emphasis on economic analysis and policy) from the University of California at Berkeley and her J.D. from Stanford Law School.