Shore Gregory ’06

DEGREE: B.A. in history

JOB TITLE: Executive Vice President, Island Creek Oysters

REPORTER: How did you get involved with Island Creek Oysters?
GREGORY: Island Creek Oysters was started in my hometown of Duxbury, Massachusetts, by a guy named Skip Bennett. I had worked on the farm a few summers while at Trinity, and upon graduation I decided to travel before finding a job. At the last minute, Skip joined a friend and me for a few weeks in South America. Over a few glasses of Argentinean wine, the idea to come back and work on the business side of Island Creek was hatched.

REPORTER: Was there a class or experience at Trinity that shaped the way you work?
GREGORY: Trinity taught me two things that I use every day: fi rst, the ability to think critically and creatively. Second, my work ethic. At Island Creek, as I’m sure is the case in most small businesses, the ability to put your head down and grind out the seemingly endless amounts of work is very important. The only thing more important is the ability to do this with an open, creative mind. What I love most about Island Creek is our effort to create something that hasn’t existed before, and the hours I spent toiling over Professor Chatfield’s assignments equipped me with the skills to do this day in and day out.

REPORTER: What does the Island Creek Oyster Festival entail?
GREGORY: At its core, the Island Creek Oyster Festival is all about charity. Beyond charity, it’s all about having fun and celebrating the vibrant world of oyster farming and food. More specifically, its 3,000 people on Duxbury Beach eating 40,000 oysters and food cooked by Boston and New York’s best chefs while supporting our foundation. It’s been humbling to see the response from people all over who come out each September to support our foundation. The festival has become an amazing force for good.

REPORTER: Where did the idea for the Island Creek Oysters Foundation come from?
GREGORY: In 2009, the foundation began funding and building an aquaculture project in the country of Tanzania. Working with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute, the foundation has placed Island Creek farmers alongside locally based, African farmers on the island of Zanzibar to help with the construction of a shellfish hatchery and the eventual production of a native shellfish population. This will create a sustainable protein source for a number of local communities in Africa. Oysters have given us an amazing platform to reach a lot of people, and we believe everyone should give back to causes important to them. Certainly we aren’t a large corporation with millions of dollars to give away, but if all businesses large and small commit some of their time and energy to philanthropic efforts, a tremendous amount of good can be done.

REPORTER: What role will the foundation play in Haiti?
GREGORY: Our foundation is focused on using our knowledge of aquaculture to combat poverty in areas of need throughout the world. In Haiti, we will be funding an existing project called Caribbean Harvest. Caribbean Harvest is using tilapia cultivation as a means of combating poverty, and we are excited to be raising money to contribute to this cause. Our foundation also provides on-the-ground support, so it is our hope to have folks on the ground in Haiti assisting Caribbean Harvest and their efforts.


*This profile originally appeared in the Fall 2011 issue of The Trinity Reporter.