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“Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.” – Helen Keller

As we know, Rob Stewart disappeared Tuesday evening off the coast of Florida. The outpouring of support and hope that spearheads his search is inspiring. Across social media on Facebook, Twitter and at sharkwater.com you can find updates and opportunities to volunteer or donate. On twitter follow @teamsharkwater and #FindRob.

The fundraising campaign continues to gather funds for air and ground searches including 13 helicopter and teams working non-stop. The outpouring of financial support is heartwarming.

 Green Heroes field producer Stephanie Silliker and I met Rob in the summer of 2009 when we interviewed him for the first season of our TV and web series.

I remember Stephanie giving me the Sharkwater DVD telling me it was a “much-see” because Rob was your quintessential Green Hero. He certainly changed my Jaws-jaded view of sharks from man-eater. In less than 5 minutes, I learned that sharks are not to be feared by rather revered for the essential role they play in balancing all life on earth.

I was so impressed at how he was able to convince me of their importance that we did the interview with him right away. He was gracious and generous, even introducing us to his pet python.

He also tipped us off that a new film called The Cove was having its commercial release that night in Toronto and that Ric O’Barry, the film’s hero, would be there to talk about it. Thanks to Rob, we got the scoop on another Green Hero, before his Academy award win, that day.

Stephanie wrote to me upon hearing of Rob’s disappearance. “ I was lucky enough to accompany you to interview one of Canada’s most influential environmentalists and documentarians. His vibrant spirit and zest for open water and the wildlife below are so inspiring. I was shocked and saddened to hear that news that he has gone missing. I am sending positive vibes in the hope he will be rescued safely.”

I join Stephanie and literally millions of others around the world hoping and praying that Rob will be found. Just think of Rob free-diving in the last scene of Sharkwater and you’ll agree with this encouraging message from the Sharkwater website:

“We believe Robbie Stewart is out there waiting for us to find him. We are reaching 72 hours, which is an absolutely feasible timeframe in which to find Robbie. And as we all know, he is strong and resilient and at home in the water.”

Rob with his pet python

Canada’s oldest environmental film festival (celebrating its 15th anniversary) opens Thursday, November 6 with Sturla Gunnarsson’s latest film, Monsoon, at the Bell TIFF Lightbox and wraps on Sunday, November 9.

Packed into four days are industry events, foodie delights, screenings (at the AGO, Rainbow Cinemas and York University) and awards for filmmaking and activism.

Two Green Heroes’ videos introduce this year’s Eco-Heroes award recipients: Sharkwater director Rob Stewart and Clayquot Sound activist Tzeporah Berman. Congratulations to you both!

The award ceremony kicks off at the Bloor Hot Docs! Theatre at 6:30 on Sunday, November 9th followed by the premiere of The Dark Side of the Chew, the latest film by Garbage: The Revolution director, Andrew Nisker.

You can check out the full schedule and buy tickets right here! piff_eco heroes_3piff_eco heroes_2


When he came out with the documentary SharkwaterRob Stewart turned heads and drew some much-needed attention on the importance of sharks in our ecosystem and the unjust treatment they were/are receiving. With such a revolutionary film, no one can be surprised by his next feat with the new documentary, Revolution.  As a follow-up to the previous doc, Rob takes us through over 15 countries and reveals the truth about what is happening to the earth and how all of our actions are interconnected. After travelling the world, Rob encounters many special individuals that create hope and encouragement for all of the changes that we can make to help alter the harmful route we may be headed. Set for release on April 12th, even the trailer of this film (released February 25th) will give you goosebumps, inspiration, and motivation to help save our planet…and Rob tells us just where to start.

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Toronto is one step closer to joining California in a shark fin ban.

On Friday, Toronto City Council voted unanimously to support it.

Rob Stewart, shark activist and proponent of the ban, spoke to the Council to explain why sharks need our help.

GreenHeroes hopes that such bans will change the industry and eventually stop the cruel hunt of this now endangered animal. You can help Rob in his fight to protect sharks by signing this petition and coming out to his fundraiser 100% Fin Free: An Evening For Sharks this Wednesday night.

Want to do more? Check out United Conservationists, the NGO Rob started to protect sharks and other animals.

Loves sharks and wants you to too

Rob Stewart is the award-winning director of the multi-award winning feature documentary Sharkwater. The film, which challenges the age-old image of sharks as human-eaters, is helping to carve a new truth for sharks and elevate the reality of their plight to us all. Rob has brought attention to the urgent issue of declining shark populations worldwide. Since 1970 we have lost 90% of the planet’s sharks, owing to over-fishing sharks for shark fin soup and catching them as by-catch. Take Action now to help spread shark realities.

“If the public knew that we depend on the oceans for survival, yet we’re destroying them every day in unprecedented ways, they would take a stand, just as they spoke out for whales and for holes in the ozone layer.” – Rob Stewart, Sharkwater director, guest blogger

“Ordinary people have always made a difference and changed the world and that’s what it’s going to be in the future.”

Please support the following organizations that Rob Stewart is affiliated with: