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Greg Stemm

Co-Founder &
Chairman Emeritus


Greg Stemm is an entrepreneur, pioneer and widely recognized leader in the field of deep-ocean exploration. He has played an important role in the development of new advanced technologies and private sector standards for ocean mineral exploration, shipwreck archaeology and underwater resource management for over 30 years. Mr. Stemm has also authored dozens of opinion pieces for international publications in favor of promoting government/private party partnerships in deep-ocean exploration. Currently Mr. Stemm is the CEO and Chairman of CIC Limited, the license holder for the CIC Project.

Odyssey Marine Exploration was co-founded by Mr. Stemm in 1994 and during his tenure he served in various capacities including as the CEO, a Board Director and the Director of Operations. During this time, he was responsible for research, project development, funding and operations on all shipwreck, marine exploration and offshore mineral projects.

Mr. Stemm is also a Past President of the International Marine Minerals Society (IMMS), the oldest and largest international organization with the mission to promote the field of ocean mineral science, research and commerce. 

Mr. Stemm has extensive experience in managing complex marine exploration operations since entering the field with the purchase of his first research vessel in 1986, including deep-ocean search and robotic archaeological excavation and the development of many ground-breaking technical and operational methods of exploring for a wide variety of ocean resources. Along with Odyssey CEO Mark Gordon, he helped direct Odyssey’s move into the ocean minerals business.

A pioneer in deep-ocean exploration, Mr. Stemm’s first major deep-ocean shipwreck discovery was the “Tortugas” project, a Colonial Spanish shipwreck that was the world’s first complete remote robotic archaeological excavation. Conducted in 1990-1991 at a depth of over 405 metres, it was the first project to integrate acoustic positioning and photogrammetry to create a deep-ocean photomosaic. Under Mr. Stemm’s direction, Odyssey went on to discover more shipwrecks than any other organization in history counting the SS Republic, SS Gairsopp and HMS Victory (1744) among its most famous finds.

He has authored and edited over 50 papers and articles on deep-ocean marine exploration and archaeological investigations, and has given hundreds of lectures on the subject to a variety of venues. He is the co-editor of the Oceans Odyssey series which features a broad range of scientific papers relating to shipwrecks and exploration in the deep ocean. He was also a panelist at the 1998 Law of the Sea Institute and was appointed to four consecutive terms to the United States delegation to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) expert meeting to negotiate the Convention for the Protection of Underwater Cultural Heritage (CPUCH) at UNESCO headquarters in Paris, France.

In 2017, Mr. Stemm was honoured with the Freedom of the City of London Award, one of the oldest surviving ceremonies in existence. The prestigious award is believed to have been first presented in 1237 and has included such notable figures as Sir Winston Churchill, Florence Nightingale, Bill Gates and Charles Lindbergh. Mr. Stemm received his illuminated Freedom scroll at a ceremony presided over by the Mayor of the City of London, followed by a banquet at Guildhall on September 3, 2017. The honour historically provided special trading rights and privileges (including the right to go about the City with a drawn sword and take their livestock tax free over the London Bridge) to individuals who have provided exemplary service to the UK and the City of London and have shown success and recognition in their chosen field.

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