skip to Main Content

Staff members

Hugo Nijkamp

General Manager

Hugo Nijkamp is a marine biologist by training. In 1990 he started his professional career in the field of sea use policy and management. As a consultant he has been involved in numerous projects, assigned by governmental agencies, NGO’s and industry, ranging from coastal zone management and marine protected areas to fisheries and marine policy development. He has lobbied and negotiated international agreements and projects on behalf of national delegations (NL) or international NGO’s. Since 1999 Hugo has been the main driving force behind Sea Alarm’s continued development. Sea Alarm works closely with wildlife response organisations, scientists, environmental NGOs, a range of key actors within the oil and shipping industries, and governmental bodies at national, regional and global levels. Originally from the Netherlands, Hugo holds the position of Sea Alarm’s General Manager, and chairs the Baltic Expert Working Group on Oiled Wildlife Response under the Helsinki Convention.

Saskia Sessions-Puplett

Senior Technical Adviser

Saskia Sessions-Puplett, a Marine Scientist by training, has a strong background in international oil spill response. Her previous experience includes consulting to the oil industry for Oil Spill Response (OSRL) and serving as Project Officer at the European Maritime Safety Agency in Lisbon, where she provided the secretariat of the Consultative Technical Group on marine pollution preparedness and response. Since joining Sea Alarm, Saskia has worked on a number of wildlife response planning projects in Europe, central Asia and West Africa and regularly provides training to oil industry, NGO and governmental audiences. Saskia also acts as coordinator of EUROWA, a network of European organisations that assists European governments with developing national plans and preparedness systems to deal with oil spills and other marine wildlife emergencies. Originally from the UK, she has been with Sea Alarm since October 2009.

Daniela Barreras Biesot

Senior Technical Adviser

Daniela graduated in Environmental Sciences (BSC and Msc) in Barcelona where she also gained six years’ experience as an Environmental Consultant. She joined Oil Spill Response Limited (OSRL) in the UK in 2012 and started building up strong knowledge in the international oil spill response sector. During her 7.5 years period in OSRL she supported different incidents and internal activities as a Senior Spill Response Specialist, provided emergency preparedness and response readiness services globally as a Senior Consultant and was a core OSRL Wildlife team member involved in several wildlife activities and responsible for different wildlife equipment projects.

Daniela moved to Brussels in 2019 and, after a successful five month secondment, joined the Sea Alarm Team as Senior Technical Advisor in August of that year. She is fully integrated into some of Sea Alarm’s main projects (EUROWA, industry exercises, training and workshop activities).

Edel Shanahan

Edel Shanahan has a background in zoology and environmental management but has broadened her expertise with experience also in communications and EU policy. She began her career working as a project manager for Nature Trust (Malta), leading the sea turtle rehabilitation centre which gave her hands-on experience of how to deal with injured turtles, as well as dolphins and other wildlife. On moving to Brussels in 2018, she deepened her knowledge of environmental policy and campaigning by working for the WWF European Policy Office, focusing on communications for biodiversity and agriculture both in Europe and beyond. Edel later joined the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Europe with a focus on stakeholder engagement. She worked with the EU institutions, national governments, industry and NGOs. In September 2022, she became part of the Sea Alarm team as a Technical Adviser.

Dawn Smith


Dawn Smith, a freelance writer and editor with a background in wildlife rehabilitation, began working on projects for Sea Alarm in 2008. In 2012, she took on a more consistent consultant role with the organisation. Dawn has responded to oil affected wildlife in Alaska, California, Belgium and the UK, led animal care programmes in two US wildlife hospitals, and consulted on a variety of wildlife projects in the US, Europe Africa and Asia.

Back To Top