“In 2008, Marcus and I met on a sailing expedition to research pollution in the North Pacific Gyre. As we sailed from Hawaii to Los Angeles, we collected samples of broken down plastics tragically mixed with marine life. But at night, we saw something even more alarming. Small fish that surfaced nocturnally to feed were mistaking contaminated plastic waste for food. As these fish were consumed by larger predators, the toxins were working their way up the food chain—and onto our plates. We vowed to dedicate our lives to solving the problem, and to each other. After Marcus fashioned a ring from discarded fishing line that he pulled from the ocean, we got engaged on top of a floating garbage patch. Soon after, he left on a three-month voyage aboard JUNK RAFT, a boat kept afloat by 15,000 recycled plastic water bottles, raising awareness about plastic pollution and inspiring the launch of The 5 Gyres Institute.” –Anna