Professional Certification

A sign of credibility, professionalism, and pursuit of education

Jim Borawa, Emeritus Status

 “I have always valued being a Certified Fisheries Professional and have encouraged others to seek certification.  Over my career the requirement to be recertified has been a catalyst for me to seek continuing education opportunities that would keep me abreast of changes in the fisheries profession as well as prepare me for positions with administrative responsibilities.  I will always be proud of having maintained full certification and I appreciate being able to qualify for Emeritus Status.”

– Jim Borawa, Certified Fisheries Professional, Emeritus

Read about more certified members, or apply today!

See the complete list of currently certified members. 

Why become certified?

There are many reasons for seeking professional certification. For some it represents achievement of a career goal while for others it represents a credential necessary to perform their job. Adelman et al. (1997) describe the specific objectives of certification as follows: (1) to provide governmental and nongovernmental agencies and organizations, private firms, courts, and the general public with a definitive minimum standard of experience and education for fisheries professionals; and (2) to foster broader recognition of fisheries professionals as well-educated and experienced, acting in the best interest of the public. Click here to read more

Levels of Certification

  • Associate Fisheries Professional (FP-A)
    • An applicant who satisfies course work and degree (minimum of B.S. or B.A.) requirements but has insufficient or no experience
  • Certified Fisheries Professional (FP-C)
    • An applicant who satisfies course work and degree requirements and has a specific number of years of qualifying experience and a specific number of professional development quality points (PDQPs)
  • Certified Fisheries Professional (FP-C) (applying as Established Fisheries Professional)
  • Associate Fisheries Professional (FP-A) upgrading to Certified Fisheries Professional (FP-C)

Application Deadline


Applications submitted early will be sent to the Board of Professional Certification for review during the upcoming quarter.

Application Fees

 Certification Type  Member Cost
 Certified Fisheries Professional (FP-C)  $100
 Associate Fisheries Professional (FP-A)  $50
 Upgrading from a FP-A to a FP-C  $50
 Renewal: Certified Fisheries Professional (FP-C)  $50
 Emeriti certificate (20+ years certified)  $10 (Emeriti certificates) and   $25 (Emeriti certificates with   plaques)

How to Apply

Only AFS members may apply for professional certification

Applicants must satisfy coursework requirements based on past education and continuing education. Application requirements differ depending on the date of your degree. Download and complete the application form and send to

If you have been a Certified Fisheries Professional for at least twenty years (need not be consecutive) and are now retired or working part-time, you are eligible for Emeritus Certification Status.

Renewal Application: please apply for renewal at the scheduled time frame.

Course Deficiency Requirement

For more detailed information about the application process, please refer to Frequently Asked Questions about Certification or contact Director of Student and Professional Development Lauren Maza at

Application Process

The Board of Professional Certification is composed of 15 Certified Fishery Professionals who represent all the Divisions and volunteer their time to review applications. The Board is composed of 3 subcommittees: Experience, Education and Professional Experience. Applications are screened for completeness by AFS Educational Program Coordinator. Complete applications are sent out for review quarterly. Once the committees receive the applications it takes about a month to finish the review. Depending on the timing of your submission it may take up to 3 months to learn the outcome.

For more detailed information about the Professional Certification program and the application process, please refer to Frequently Asked Questions about Certification or download the AFS Professional Certification program 101 slideshow.

Who is Certified?

AFS is proud to announce the certification of its members on a regular basis! See the complete list of Certified Fisheries Professionals in AFS.