Eric Jay Dolin
I grew up near the coasts of New York and Connecticut, and since an early age I was fascinated by the natural world, especially the ocean. I spent many days wandering the beaches on the edge of Long Island Sound and the Atlantic, collecting seashells and exploring tidepools. When I went to college at Brown University I wanted to become a marine biologist or more specifically a malacologist (seashell scientist). At Brown I quickly realized that although I loved learning about science, I wasn't cut out for a career in science, mainly because I wasn't very good in the lab, and I didn't particularly enjoy reading or writing scientific research papers. So, after taking a year off and exploring a range of career options, I shifted course turning toward the field of environmental policy, first earning a double-major in biology and environmental studies, then getting a masters degree in environmental management from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, and a Ph.D. in environmental policy and planning from MIT, where my dissertation focused on the role of the courts in the cleanup of Boston Harbor.
I have held a variety of jobs, including stints as a fisheries policy analyst at the National Marine Fisheries Service, a program manager at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, an environmental consultant stateside and in London, an American Association for the Advancement of Science writing fellow at Business Week, a curatorial assistant in the Mollusk Department at Harvard's Museum of Comparative Zoology, and an intern at the National Wildlife Federation, the Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management, and the U.S. Senate.
Throughout my career, one thing remained constant--I enjoyed writing and telling stories. And that's why I started writing books--to share the stories that I find most intriguing (I have also published more than 60 articles for magazines, newspapers, and professional journals).
Awards and Recognition
- Appointed Research Fellow, Nantucket Historical Association (2013)
- Boston Author’s Club, Highly Recommended Book, for When America First Met China
- Gold Medal, Independent Publisher Book Awards, for When America First Met China
- Outdoor Writer’s Association, Best Book Award, for Fur, Fortune, and Empire
- Gold Medal, Independent Publisher Book Awards, for Fur, Fortune, and Empire
- John Lyman Book Award, U.S. Maritime History, by the North American Society for Oceanic History, for Leviathan
- Massachusetts Book Award, Nonfiction Honors, for Leviathan
- The 23rd annual L. Byrne Waterman Award, for “Outstanding contributions to research and pedagogy in the Arts, Humanities, and Sciences,” by the New Bedford Whaling Museum, for Leviathan
- When America First Met China chosen by Kirkus Reviews as one of the top 100 Nonfiction Books of 2012
- Leviathan chosen as one of the best nonfiction books of the year by The Los Angeles Times, the Boston Globe, and the Providence Journal