Craig Hatkoff ”s mission as an author is to share remarkable stories of hope and friendship about real animals and real world issues, while at the same time empowering kids and their parents to help save our planet.
Along with his daughters Isabella and Juliana, Craig has written five nonfiction children”s picture books about remarkable animals overcoming adversity. He and Isabella coauthored several bestselling books about the world famous Owen and Mzee: the baby hippo orphaned by the Tsunami and the giant tortoise, who formed an extraordinary bond. Owen and Mzee: The True Story of a Remarkable Friendship was a #1 New York Times bestseller and has been published in eighteen languages.
Other titles by the Hatkoffs include books about Knut (the famous baby polar bear in Germany) and Miza (a young orphaned mountain gorilla in the Congo). Looking for Miza was the centerpiece for a 2007 Clinton Global Initiative Action Commitment to protect the planet”s 720 remaining mountain gorillas. This initiative was sponsored by Craig in partnership with Dr. Richard Leakey”s WildlifeDirect, the Desmond Tutu Peace Foundation, and Scholastic. The book launch included the first-ever nationally webcast Kids Gorilla Summit, produced by Scholastic.
The Hatkoffs” latest title, Winter”s Tail: How One Little Dolphin Learned to Swim Again, is their first American-based subject. It is the inspiring true story of Winter, who as a two-month-old dolphin lost her tail after becoming entangled in a crab trap. Winter was rescued off the coast of Cape Canaveral and brought to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, where she was treated. CMA staff, engineers, and scientists helped Winter by fitting her with a breakthrough prosthetic tail, designed to be flexible enough for movement and durable enough for swimming. Winter now uses her prosthetic tail with great command, and her story is a testament to the power of love, friendship, and understanding for those who face incredible challenges.
In addition to being an author, Craig Hatkoff is cofounder of the Tribeca Film Festival, along with his wife Jane Rosenthal and Robert De Niro. He is the founder and Chairman of Turtle Pond Publications LLC, a private entertainment- and media-based company in New York and is also involved in a number of charitable and civic endeavors. Craig is on the Board of Directors of WildlifeDirect, the New York University”s Child Study Center, the Sesame Workshop, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and the Borough of Manhattan Community College Foundation. In 2002, Mayor Bloomberg appointed him one of the three Trustees of the New York City School Construction Authority, a position he held for four years.
Craig Hatkoff graduated Magna Cum Laude from Colgate University. He later received his MBA from Columbia University, where he was an adjunct professor for five years.
Craig lives in New York City with his wife and their two daughters.