Danni Washington

Miami, Florida

Growing up in a diverse community in Miami, Danni Washington was keenly aware of the environmental injustices that disproportionately affected marginalized communities. From coastal communities facing the impacts of sea-level rise to underserved neighborhoods burdened by pollution, environmental degradation and lack of access to water spaces, she experienced firsthand how environmental issues intersect with issues of race, class, and social inequality.

Danni is a renowned TV personality and science communicator with 15+ years of experience. She made history as the first African-American woman to host a nationally syndicated science series. With a diverse portfolio, including “Ocean Invaders” on PBS Nova, “Mission Unstoppable” on CBS, Xploration Nature Knows Best on FOX, and “Strange Evidence” on the Science Channel, she engages audiences in STEM content.

She hosted the podcast “The Genius Generation,” spotlighting young innovators, and she authored “Bold Women In Science,” celebrating 15 influential female scientists. As co-founder of the nonprofit Big Blue & You, she inspires and educates youth about marine science education through the arts and media. Danni continues to educate the public on the importance of ocean conservation, STEM innovation, and environmentalism using mediums that acutely connect science, arts, and media. Her ultimate vision is to help create a more science-informed society worldwide.

What inspired you to become an 11th Hour Racing ambassador?

Driven by a shared commitment to protecting and restoring our planet’s most invaluable marine ecosystems, 11th Hour Racing has deeply inspired me through their innovative initiatives like The Ocean Race’s “Racing with Purpose” program, which I had the honor of contributing to as host nine of the twelve Ocean Race Summits.

I believe that 11th Hour Racing has set a new standard for environmental stewardship and harnessing the immense power of sport to educate, inspire, and mobilize action for the ocean’s well-being. By fostering a culture of collaboration and cooperation, they amplify the impact of their efforts, inspiring others to join in the fight to safeguard the health and vitality of our oceans for future generations.

They are an example of effective teamwork and how collective action, fueled by a shared vision of sustainability, can support meaningful change on a global scale.

Why are you passionate about ocean conservation?

My passion for ocean conservation is deeply intertwined with my commitment to intersectional environmentalism—an approach that recognizes the interconnectedness of social and environmental justice issues. As a woman of color in marine science, I bring a unique perspective to my work, advocating for diversity, equity, ocean justice, and inclusion within the environmental movement. I’ve worked as a TV presenter/storyteller on various digital and television platforms to strengthen humanity’s connection to nature and amplify more diverse voices in STEM. I’m particularly inspired to merge adventure and science-related content within every project.

My advocacy for intersectional environmentalism is reflected in my work on and off-screen. As a recognizable voice in the environmental media landscape, I use my platform to elevate diverse voices and amplify stories highlighting underrepresented communities’ experiences. Through my work with Big Blue & You, North American Association for Environmental Education, Pangeaseed Foundation, the Ocean Race Summits and other collaborations – I advocate for more resources, policies and initiatives that address the needs of frontline communities. I also invite young people and their families to embark on a journey of discovery and exploration, connecting with the ocean in new and meaningful ways.

As a science communicator, I seek to make the ocean more accessible and inclusive for people from all backgrounds through relatable storytelling. By emphasizing the interconnectedness of social and environmental issues, I aim to inspire others to recognize their own power to effect positive change in their communities and the world. Intersectional environmentalism is not just a theoretical framework—it’s a lived experience that informs her worldview and drives my advocacy. By centering issues of equity and justice in my work, I strive to create a more inclusive and equitable environmental movement that uplifts the voices of all people, regardless of race, gender, or socioeconomic status.


Supporting the mission

Project name: Big Blue & You

Project mission: One of the first ocean conservation nonprofits to be founded and run by African American women. For the past 15 years, the organization has supported emerging activists — especially young women of color and other historically excluded groups — with STEAM resources to help them become ocean advocates.

Danni Washington diving among coral reef, 11th Hour Racing Ambassador