Co-founder Camden Howitt wraps up 14 years with Sustainable Coastlines | Sustainable Coastlines

Big news for Sustainable Coastlines comes today, with Co-founder and Programmes Director Camden Howitt announcing he is moving on from the charity after nearly 14 years of mahi for our oceans.

Since early 2009, Camden has been a driving force for solutions to ocean pollution. Alongside co-founder Sam Judd, Camden designed and delivered programmes that have removed 1.7 million litres of litter from coastlines, planted 330,000 trees to restore waterways, engaged 150,000 volunteers and provided education for ocean action to 250,000 people.

More recently, Camden spearheaded the 2018 launch of the charity’s newest, award-winning programme Litter Intelligence, training ‘citizen scientists’ at over 300 beaches nationwide to monitor and take action on marine litter and plastic pollution.

A passionate advocate for our moana and awa, Camden has delivered community-based environmental solutions for Sustainable Coastlines around Aotearoa and the Pacific. With his years of strategy, community engagement and programme design experience, Camden combines a deep connection with the outdoors with a drive for collaboration to build large-scale change. A regular contributor to national, regional and global dialogue on sustainability, Camden is an expert at creating innovative solutions that work.

Reflecting on his departure, Camden said that while it was a tough decision, the time was right and he leaves a legacy of well-established programmes and a great team to continue the mahi.

“I’m super excited about the next stage of my journey, and the opportunity to address some of the greatest sustainability challenges Aotearoa faces,” says Camden. “My love for our oceans, and my drive to protect them, is stronger than ever, and I’m committed to continuing to push for better outcomes for our moana.”

Camden (left) at a tree-planting event at Auckland’s Puhinui Reserve

While he is finishing up his Programmes Director role at Sustainable Coastlines, Camden will continue his ongoing mahi to solve plastic pollution through his membership of the Aotearoa Plastic Pollution Alliance, as a Litter Intelligence Citizen Scientist, and through his daily actions.

Announcing Camden’s departure, Sustainable Coastlines Chair Samantha Walmsley-Bartlett said the Board was sad to see Camden move on, but is excited to see the contributions he will continue to make to regenerate te taiao.

“Camden has embodied a passion for restoring and protecting the natural beauty of our coastline. I would like to thank him for his significant contribution to the charity and we all wish him the greatest of success in the future,” says Walmsley-Bartlett.

Camden and the SC whānau at an event at The Flagship Education Centre

“I’m proud of everything our wonderful whānau has achieved over the years, and I consider myself lucky to have been surrounded by so many brilliant, passionate people along the way,” added Howitt.

“I want to thank our Sustainable Coastlines team, our Board, our unwavering partners and supporters, and our incredible network of volunteers who turn up time and time again. Without you Sustainable Coastlines could not have existed, but with you, I know it will continue to thrive.”

In January 2022, Emma Dent announced her decision to step down as chairperson for Sustainable Coastlines. This April, Emma passes her position to the extremely capable Samantha Walmsley-Bartlett. See below for CEO Josh Borthwick’s full announcement.

Emma Dent

Change of chairperson announcement

28 Jan 2022


Today I would like to relay the news that Emma Dent is stepping down as chairperson of the Sustainable Coastlines Charitable Trust. After four years as our chair through an unprecedented period of growth, it’s timely for Emma to take stock and review what’s next. Emma will be focusing her time on her role as director of development with The Nature Conservancy, Aotearoa New Zealand.

I’d personally like to thank Emma for inducting me into the organisation as CEO and supporting me and my team through Covid-19. Emma is incredibly smart, composed and compassionate. I’m going to miss her terribly and the SC crew can’t thank her enough for her dedication, commitment and support of our charity. Emma will always have a special place in the SC whānau and we know she won’t be a stranger.

Every change creates opportunity and I’m excited to announce Samantha Walmsley-Bartlett as our new Chair, effective April 2022. Sam’s been a board member for three years and is also one of our original Litter Intelligence volunteer leaders. As a trained botanist Samantha has dedicated her career to helping businesses and organisations care for our environment. As environmental and sustainability manager, Samantha actively led, implemented and expanded produce company T&G’s sustainability framework. Now at Circularity, she gets to consult to a wide variety of organisations to design, develop and measure best practice environmental strategies to design out waste, keep materials in flow and regenerate living systems.

Samantha Walmsley-Bartlett

Sam will be supported by a formal vice-chair position, filled by Grant Biggar, who having spent several decades building investment and fin-tech businesses around the world, is now based in New Zealand and is focused on improving New Zealand for future generations while also remaining active in early stage private company investing. Grant has a passion for watersports and the coastline and currently serves as chair of the finance, audit and remuneration committee for Sustainable Coastlines. 

Other trustees, Craig Fisher and Abbie Reynolds remain in their positions and provide an incredible wealth of experience across governance, finance, conservation, climate change and sustainability. We are also actively recruiting for three new board trustees with backgrounds in charitable revenue development, product technology development and / or  a deep understanding of te ao Māori, mātauranga Māori and deep connections with iwi / hapū and Pasifika communities. 


Ngā mihi, 

 Josh Borthwick
Sustainable Coastlines


Josh Borthwick
021 823 380

 Emma Dent
027 706 5927

 Samantha Walmsley-Bartlett
021 918 053