Workshop Participants

C-CAN Biological Parameters Workshop December 13-14, 2011


NOAA Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory

Dr. Simone Alin is an Oceanographer at NOAA’s Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory in Seattle, where she does research on various aspects of the marine carbon cycle, including ocean acidification. She is also an affiliate associate professor in the University of Washington’s School of Oceanography. Geographically, most of her research focuses on the California Current System along the US West Coast. She has been actively involved with planning and developing NOAA’s ocean acidification research effort for North American coastal oceans, which includes moored and ship‐based observations of the chemistry, biology, and physics associated with ocean acidification. She has also developed predictive relationships to facilitate the hindcasting of pH and carbonate saturation states based on historical data from the California Current System, such as oxygen concentrations, temperature, and salinity.


California Department of Fish & Game

Debbie Aseltine‐Neilson is currently a Senior Marine Biologist Specialist with the California Department of Fish and Game and is the Marine Region’s coordinator for research and data partnerships. She has over 30 years of experience working as a marine/fisheries biologist. For much of this time, she worked on projects associated with marine resources off California, though she also spent time studying species within the Atlantic/Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South China Sea. Her work has included studying the impacts of water flow on sea urchin distributions, documenting changes in invertebrate, algal, and fish communities on artificial and natural reefs, surveying catches from the set gill net fishery, and examining the vertical distribution of bioluminescence in coastal waters. Aseltine‐Neilson has also worked on a variety of management and assessment projects, such as assisting in the development of a fishery management plan for the nearshore finfish fishery, representing California on the Pacific Fishery Management Council’s Groundfish Management Team, participating on several stock assessment teams, and assisting Sea Grant staff to convene a Managing Data‐Poor Fisheries Workshop in 2008. She is currently a management advisor for an ocean acidification study headed by Dr. Victoria Fabry.


Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute

Dr. Jim Barry is a Senior Scientist at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute. He is a marine ecologist with wide‐ranging interests. His research program uses advanced undersea robotics to broaden understanding of how fossil fuel emissions affect ocean ecosystems from the surface to the deep sea. In addition to publishing over 75 scientific papers, Barry has helped to inform Congress and the public about ocean acidification, ocean carbon sequestration, and climate change. He is a contributing author to the “IPCC Special Report on Carbon Capture and Storage”, and is an author of the National Research Council’s report on “Ocean Acidification: A National Strategy to Meet the Challenges of a Changing Ocean”.


Pacific Coast Shellfish Growers Association

Alan Barton is the Project Coordinator for the Pacific Coast Shellfish Growers Association (PCSGA) Monitoring Program, a collaborative effort established between shellfish growers and members of the research community, with the goal of accurately monitoring seawater quality in areas of commercial importance to the Pacific Northwest shellfish industry. Established in 2010 through support from NOAA, the project has evolved into a network of monitoring stations stretching from Netarts Bay, OR to Bellingham WA, at key sites of commercial hatchery production and at sites of high natural recruitment of Pacific oyster larvae. In 2008 and 2009, Alan worked at Whiskey Creek Shellfish Hatchery in Netarts, OR, and was involved in attempts to understand the effects of upwelled, acidified seawater on commercial production of Pacific oyster larvae, particularly during the first 7-10 days after fertilization. Alan and Whiskey Creek staff adopted careful monitoring of ambient pCO2 levels as a management strategy in the hatchery, resulting in a significant increase in larval production. However, these adaptive strategies cannot restore commercial production to historic levels, and continued efforts to understand and manipulate seawater chemistry remain an important focus at Whiskey Creek.

Prior to his work at Whiskey Creek, Alan served as Program Manager for the Molluscan Broodstock Program (MBP) under the direction of Dr. Chris Langdon. MBP, a part of Oregon State University’s Hatfield Marine Science Center, has worked closely with the oyster industry since its inception in 1996, and selectively breeds Pacific and Kumamoto oysters for use in commercial hatchery production. Alan managed the MBP hatchery and grow-out operations from 2004-2007, and continues to work closely with Dr. Langdon’s program in his role as project coordinator for the PCSGA monitoring program.


NOAA Northwest Fishery Science Center

Dr. Shallin Busch is a Research Ecologist at NOAA’s Northwest Fisheries Science Center (NWFSC) in Seattle. Her research focuses on ocean acidification, and she addresses this broad topic with experiments and computer modeling. In the laboratory, she studies how coastal species respond to different constant pH conditions and variation in pH conditions. To date, she has lead or contributed to studies on a variety of molluscs, rockfish, smelt, crabs, krill, and copepods. To address how ocean acidification may impact marine communities, Busch uses computer models to explore how direct effects of ocean acidification on some species may alter entire food webs through trophic interactions. Dr. Busch also leads the carbon chemistry work that supports NWFSC ocean acidification research.


Whiskey Creek Shellfish Hatchery

Sue Cudd is the co-owner of Whiskey Creek Shellfish Hatchery, a bivalve hatchery in Tillamook, OR that supplies larvae and seed for west coast shellfish growers. Sue graduated from the University of Washington’s School of Fisheries and has been working in the shellfish hatchery business for 25 years. Since 2006, the hatchery has been experiencing serious oyster larvae mortalities. They are now working with Oregon State University to monitor and resolve this problem, which may be related to elevated CO2 levels in the incoming seawater.


Scripps Institution of Oceanography

Dr. Andrew Dickson is a Professor of Marine Chemistry at the University of California, San Diego’s Scripps Institution of Oceanography. He leads the Marine Physical Laboratory’s Oceanic Carbon Dioxide Quality Control research group, which is engaged in a variety of project studying upper-ocean biogeochemistry and carbon dioxide chemistry in seawater. Specific projects include: development of strategies for quality control of ocean carbon dioxide measurements, including the production and distribution of appropriate reference materials; improvement of techniques for measuring carbon dioxide parameters in seawater; and, a detailed study of acid-base chemistry processes in seawater, including aspects related to ocean acidification. In particular, his group is currently collaborating on a project to study ocean acidification exacerbated by coastal upwelling on the California shelf, which is directed by Dr. Victoria Fabry (California State University, San Marcos) and funded by the California Ocean Protection Council. They are also involved in a project directed by Dr. Richard Feely (NOAA/PMEL) to ascertain whether changes in ocean pH or aragonite saturation along the Californiacoast can be accurately inferred from hydrographic measurements such as salinity, temperature and oxygen concentrations.


Taylor Shellfish Inc.

Benoit Eudeline is the production and applied research and development manager for the Taylor Shellfish, Inc. Quilcene shellfish hatchery. His PhD, received in 2004, focused on developing new techniques of tetraploidy induction in Pacific oyster, C.gigas. He has been involved in shellfish research and aquaculture both in France (Ifremer) and on the west coast of the United States for the last 18 years. Research interests include cytogenic systems development and optimization for shellfish / seed culture. His current focus is understanding water quality / chemistry changes and their impact on shellfish larvae survival and implementing better performance and water quality monitoring throughout the different Taylor Shellfish facilities.


NOAA Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory

Dr. Richard Feely is a Senior Scientist at the NOAA Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory in Seattle, WA. He also holds an affiliate full professor faculty position at the University of Washington’s School of Oceanography. His major research interests are carbon cycling in the oceans and ocean acidification processes. Feely is the co-chair of the US CLIVAR/CO2 Repeat Hydrography Program, and a member of the Steering Committee for the US Ocean Carbon and Biogeochemistry Program. He was awarded the Department of Commerce Gold Award in 2006 for his pioneering research on ocean acidification. He received a BA in chemistry from the University of St. Thomas, and an MS and PhD from Texas A&M University, both in chemical oceanography.


University of Washington

Dr. Carolyn Friedman is a Professor, JISAO Senior Fellow at the University of Washington. Her laboratory focuses on the examination of infectious and non-infectious diseases of wild and cultured marine invertebrates, and is interested in the impacts of disease on animal health at the individual and population levels. At the individual level, she examines host response (gross to gene expression level) and develops and applies diagnostic tools (e.g., cPCR and qPCR) to detect pathogens and host responses. The lab also develops treatments for bacterial pathogens. The ecology of infectious diseases at the population level is examined via field and wet laboratory experiments in which the roles of variations in host (e.g., species or family), environment (e.g., temperature, salinity, pH), and pathogen are defined.

Another focus of Dr. Friedman’s laboratory is the conservation of marine invertebrates, particularly abalone. She works with colleagues at universities and state and federal resource agencies to characterize trends in populations, recruitment, and larval survival/behavior.

The laboratory serves as the OIE Reference Laboratory for infection with “Candidatus Xenohaliotis californiensis”. Major projects include:

  1. Effects of ocean acidification on declining Puget Sound calcifiers
  2. Threats to bivalve aquaculture and fisheries: The influence of emerging diseases and environmental change


National Science Foundation Program Director

Dave Garrison is the Program Director of the Biological Oceanography Program in the Division of Ocean Sciences (OCE) at the National Science Foundation. His program duties include Long-term ecological research (LTER) in coastal ocean ecosystems; Ocean Acidification (OA) and Dimensions of Diversity, cross-directorate Science, Engineering and Education for Sustainability (SEES) activities; and carbon cycling. He represents NSF on the Interagency Working Group-Ocean Acidification (IWG-OA).


Ho Tribe – fisheries biologist

Joe Gilbertson studied Biology at Dartmouth College as an undergraduate, post-graduate studies in biochemistry and genetics at Cornell University. He has been employed by the Hoh Tribe as Fisheries Biologist since 2005. His work involves evaluating and forecasting the abundance of various fisheries resources of critical economic and cultural importance to the Hoh Tribe in order to determine “harvestable surplus”. His job is to develop sustainable harvest managment plans for Hoh Tribal members, in cooperation with colleagues from the State of Washington, in order to ensure fisheries resources will continue to provide for Hoh Tribal needs for at least “seven generations” into the future.

Joe is responsible for managing population and harvest data for wild and hatchery steelhead, coho and chinook salmon as well as ocean finfish including halibut, blackcod and rockfish. In addition he is responsible for managing Hoh Tribal shellfish harvest, population assessment activities and biotoxin monitoring including various clam species, mussles and crabs. Joe participates in the IPC (Intergovernmental Policy Council) science panel.


University of California, Davis
Bodega Ocean Acidification Research Group

Dr. Tessa Hill is a professor at UC Davis in the Department of Geology and Bodega Marine Laboratory. Areas of research in the Hill laboratory include reconstructions of past and present climate change utilizing the geochemistry of sediments and corals, and monitoring modern ocean acidification utilizing oceanographic sensors and discrete sampling (pH, pCO2, alkalinity, DIC) within the California Current. She is a principal investigator in the Bodega Ocean Acidification Research (BOAR) group and is currently mentoring students and postdocs on projects ranging from climate change over the past one million years to modern and future impacts of climate and geochemical change on the California coast.


University of California, Santa Barbara

Dr. Gretchen Hofmann is the Director of the Center for the Study of Ocean Acidification and Ocean Change, a UC-multi-campus initiative. She is an eco-physiologist whose research focuses on the effects of climate and climate change on the performance of marine species in ecosystems ranging polar to temperate and tropical. In particular, her recent work investigates the impact to marine organisms from rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations via global warming and ocean acidification. Studies by Hofmann and her collaborators are identifying key developmental challenges for the sensitive larval stages of marine species in acidified waters, and gene pathways that may play a role in those processes. They are also investigating how marine species will cope with the dual challenges of ocean warming and ocean acidification in the coming century. Hofmann is Co-Chair of the Ocean Carbon and Biogeochemistry (OCB) Ocean Acidification Subcommittee and currently serves on the National Research Council Ocean Acidification Committee and on the Ocean Acidification Task Force, organized by the Ocean Research and Resources Advisory Panel (ORRAP). She is also a member of the US National Science Foundation’s Office of Polar Programs Advisory Panel.


University of Southern California Professor of Biological Sciences

Dr. Dave Hutchins’ research interests concern marine phytoplankton biology and nutrient and carbon cycling. In general, these projects often involve first building hypotheses based on experimental work with algal cultures in the laboratory. These hypotheses are then tested in experiments with natural communities of plankton onboard research vessels at sea. His recent and current projects include extensive investigations into the role of iron and other trace metals as biologically limiting nutrients in the ocean, and factors that affect the establishment of destructive blooms of harmful and toxic algae. New projects in regions like the Bering Sea, the North Atlantic, and the seas around Antarctica are examining the impacts of anthropogenic global change (e.g. rising CO2, acidity and temperature) on the structure and diversity of phytoplankton communities, and on the ocean nutrient cycling pathways and food webs that they support. Another ongoing project is examining the implications of increasing atmospheric CO2 for nitrogen-fixing organisms in the tropical and subtropical oceans. This new work is at the forefront of increasingly urgent efforts among the international oceanography community to understand the consequences of human fossil fuel emissions for ocean biology and chemistry, and in turn predict the potential feedbacks from these changing ocean processes to atmospheric CO2 and global climate.

Research specialties: Phytoplankton biology, biogeochemical oceanography, ocean carbon and nutrient cycles, ocean climate change feedbacks, trace metal/biota interactions, harmful algal bloom studies.


Penn Cove Shellfish LLC

Ian Jefferds is general manager of Penn Cove Shellfish LLC on Whidbey Island, Washington, America’s oldest and largest commercial mussel farm. He also represents commercial marine interests and aquaculture as Chair of the Island County Marine Resources Committee and is on the Board of the Pacific Coast Shellfish Growers Association. His focus related to offshore observation is on marine water quality and how it relates to shellfish recruitment and survival. Jefferds holds a degree in marine resource assessment planning and biology from Huxley College of Environmental Studies at Western Washington University.


University of Washington School of Marine Affairs

Dr. Terrie Klinger is an Associate Professor of Marine Affairs at the University of Washington (UW), Adjunct Associate Professor in the School of Aquatic and Fisheries Sciences, and Director of the UW IGERT Program on Ocean Change. Her research focuses on the ecology of nearshore benthic communities, with a special emphasis on the impacts of multiple stressors on marine ecosystem function and the development of management strategies to reduce such impacts. She also serves as a gubernatorial appointee to the Northwest Straits Commission, past Chair of the Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Council, and a Science Advisor to the Communication Partnership for Science and the Sea (COMPASS). Dr. Klinger earned her PhD in Biological Oceanography from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego.


University of California, Santa Cruz

Dr. Raphael Kudela is a Professor in the Ocean Sciences Department at UCSC.

“I am a phytoplankton ecologist who wishes to understand the fundamental question: what controls phytoplankton growth and distribution in the ocean. More specifically, how do the multiple interactions of light, macro- and micronutrients and phytoplankton physiology determine the rates, processes, and patterns we observe in the marine environment? Oceanography is rapidly moving away from observational science towards an understanding of underlying mechanistic processes at all scales, in part because of the wealth of revolutionary new technological and scientific advances. My approach is to combine a suite of 3 tools: (1) remotely sensed data from moorings and satellites in combination with biological models; (2) novel bio-optical methods assaying phytoplankton physiology; and (3) the refinement of stable and radio-tracer isotopes.”

Specific Research: We are currently working on several projects in the laboratory and field, primarily in central California.

CeNCOOS: We are part of a multi-institution program (the Central and Northern California Ocean Observing System) which aims to make ocean information available to the public. The CeNCOOS website has many more details.

Cal-PReEMPT: In collaboration with Dr. Gregg Langlois at the California Department of Public Health, we developed better monitoring tools for Harmful Algal Blooms occurring in the state of California, with funding from the NOAA MERHAB program. This was a multi-year effort involving Peter Miller (lead PI) and Mary Silver at UCSC, as well as Rick Stumpf (NOAA) and collaborators in Oregon and Washington states. See the Cal-PreEMPT webpage for details. Although the project ended in 2010, we have ongoing activities through CeNCOOS and other partnerships.

NASA projects: A physiological model of nitrogen utilization by natural phytoplankton assemblages which can predict new production in coastal waters using remotely sensed data (AVHRR and ocean color data) or moorings was developed as part of NASA grant NAG5-6563. As part of the EPA funded Coastal Intensive Sites Network (CISNet; NASA grant NAG5-7632), we also developed regional algorithms (pigments, CDOM, sediments, new production) along a gradient of water conditions, from the blue-water stations occupied off central California to the turbid waters of San Pablo Bay. These methods are currently being applied to ongoing projects.Most recently we have been working on improving primary production algorithms.


Oregon State University

Dr. Chris Langdon is a Professor of Fisheries in the Department of Fisheries and Wildlife and the Coastal Oregon Marine Experiment Station at Oregon State University. Langdon’s research focuses on mollusk physiology and aquaculture, including nutrition, microencapsulation, polyculture, and genetic improvement of oyster broodstock. He works closely with the West Coast shellfish industry, as well as with state and federal agencies, to improve benefits from the wise use of marine shellfish resources of the West Coast. He jointed the faculty of Oregon State University in 1985, after receiving a PhD from the University of Wales and completing a postdoc at the University of Delaware.


Drakes Bay Oyster Company

Kevin Lunny is a third generation family rancher/farmer who has lived on the Point Reyes Peninsula for 50 years. Lunny is one of the founders of the Point Reyes Seashore Ranchers Association, and remains active as a steering committee member. He is also a board member of Marine Organic and the Pacific Coast Shellfish Growers Association, and serves as the board president of both the Marine Farmers Market Association and the Marin Agricultural Institute. In addition, he is a member of the Marin County Farm Bureau, the California Aquaculture Association, and the National Shellfisheries Association. Lunny is passionate about producing food locally and organically, with minimum impacts to the environment, while supporting biodiversity and local food systems. One current project is the restoration and cultivation of two native shellfish species at the family oyster farm in Drakes Estero, Drakes Bay Oyster Farm. Although important to indigenous people, these native species have not been cultured by California shellfish farmers for many decades. Love for the family farm prompted him to obtain a UC Davis degree in animal science and, 21 years later, the first organic certification of beef cattle in Marin County.


California Ocean Science Trust

Skyli McAfee is Executive Director of the California Ocean Science Trust (OST), a position that also serves as the science advisor to the California Ocean Protection Council (OPC) and thus co-chair of the OPC Science Advisory Team. In both roles, she is dedicated to providing the best available science to inform policy decisions by building a collaborative dialogue between scientists and decision-makers. Before coming to the OST, McAfee served as the Assistant Director of the University of California’s Bodega Marine Laboratory, where she facilitated program development and administration, encouraging productive collaborations with federal and state partners such as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, US Geological Survey and California Department of Fish and Game. McAfee received her undergraduate degree from University of California, Santa Barbara, in Aquatic Biology and a Master’s degree from Moss Landing Marine Laboratories.


California Department of Fish & Game
707 875-2067

Dr. Jim Moore is a senior fish pathologist with the Department of Fish and Game and maintains a without-salary position as Associate Clinical Professor with the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. Regulatory duties involve importations and transfers of shellfish for aquaculture and restoration or research activities, pest management at shellfish farms and tracking the occurrence and spread of diseases in wild and cultured California shellfish. Research interests include environmental modulation of disease expression. Moore received a B.A. in Biology at UC Santa Cruz and his PhD in Fisheries at the University of Washington.


Northwest Association of Networked Ocean Observing Systems (NANOOS)

Dr. Jan Newton is a Principal Oceanographer with the Applied Physics Laboratory of the University of Washington (UW) and affiliate faculty with the UW School of Oceanography and School of Marine and Environmental Affairs, both in the UW College of the Environment. Having earned her PhD in biological oceanography, her research has focused on a systems view of marine ecosystems, spanning estuaries, such as Puget Sound, the outer PNW coast, and the open Pacific Ocean, and assessing factors such as climate forcing and human effects on the characteristics and productivity of these systems. She is the Principal Investigator of the Hood Canal Low Dissolved Oxygen Program Integrated Assessment and Modeling Study, a monitoring-modeling research study to cumulatively assess the impacts of human, watershed, ocean and climate factors on dissolved oxygen in Hood Canal, WA. She is currently working with colleagues at UW and and NOAA to assess the status of ocean acidification in Puget Sound and coastal Washington. Newton is the Executive Director for the Northwest Association of Networked Ocean Observing Systems (NANOOS), which is the Pacific Northwest regional association for the US component of the Integrated and Sustained Ocean Observing System (IOOS), working toward building better ocean observing infrastructure. She co-chairs NOAA’s Alliance for Coastal Technologies Advisory Council and is involved with several regional and national coastal/estuarine assessment efforts. Newton is the Chair of the Puget Sound Partnership’s Science Panel.


Scripps Institution of Oceanography

Dr. Mark Ohman is Professor of Biological Oceanography and Curator of Pelagic Invertebrates at Scripps. He is lead PI of the California Current Ecosystem LTER site. He currently collaborates in the use of interdisciplinary moorings and Spray gliders to resolve multiple scales of forcing and ecosystem response, including to OA. His research interests include:

  • Population ecology of marine zooplankton, especially planktonic copepods
  • Mortality estimation and other demographic techniques
  • Zooplankton prey-predator interactions
  • Climate change effects on California Current pelagic food webs
  • California Current Ecosystem LTER site
  • Autonomous measurement methods

Dr. Ohman earned his PhD at the University of Washington.


Carlsbad Aquafarm Inc.

Dennis Peterson is the Director of Science at Carlsbad Aquafarm Inc. (CAI). After high school he worked in the sportfishing industry out of San Diego for five years, then served for four years in the US Coast Guard, making trips to Antarctica aboard the USCGC Glacier and USCGC Polar Sea. Peterson attended California State University, San Marcos, where he obtained a BS in biology and worked for CA as a mussel harvesting diver, as well as a hatchery and grow-out technician for abalone. He attended graduate school at the University of Southern California in the Biological Sciences Department’s Marine Environmental Program, where he studied outbreeding depression and speciation using the copepod Tigriopous californicus as a model system, advanced to candidacy, and was awarded the National Science Foundation’s Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant. Returning to CAI four years ago, Peterson now oversees the culture of mussel, oyster, abalone, a variety of seaweeds, microalgae and a variety of crustaceans.


University of Chicago

Dr. Cathy Pfister is a marine ecologist whose work focuses on how species interactions and the environment determine the abundance of marine organisms. Current research interests include the interactions between animals, seaweeds, and microbes via the nitrogen cycle, the patterns of mating systems, genetic structure and extinction risk in kelp, and the patterns and consequences of a changing nearshore carbon cycle. She has worked on the outer coast of Washington state, with special concentration on Tatoosh Island, for the past 23 years. Her work in OA focuses describing changes to the carbon cycle and understanding the consequences for nearshore primary producers and animals. She has been a faculty member in the Department of Ecology & Evolution at the University of Chicago for 16 years.


University of Washington
School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences

Dr. Steven Roberts is Assistant Professor at the UW School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences. He received his Ph.D from the University of Notre Dame (2002) where he studied growth in finfish, particularly the role of myostatin and growth hormone in muscle growth regulation. He was awarded a post-doctoral fellowship from the USDA that focused on characterizing genes involved in regulating larval development in the bay scallop, Argopecten irradians. This work was carried out at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Massachusetts. Following his post-doc, Steven remained at the Marine Biological Laboratory where he continued research on shellfish, with an increased focus on disease tolerance. In 2007, Steven joined the faculty of the School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences at the University of Washington where the focus of his lab is examining the differential genomic response of aquatic organisms to environmental change. A core component of this includes studying the immune response of shellfish that have adapted to local conditions as well as characterizing the effects of ocean acidification. Current research activities related to ocean acidification focus on evaluating the physiological response and effects of elevated carbon dioxide at the transcriptomic level. Several small scale experiments have been carried out with the Pacific oyster designed to determine how elevated carbon dioxide alone, and in combination with other stressors (i.e. mechanical stress, pathogen exposure) impacts development, morphology, and expression of select genes. More recently complementary experiments have been carried out with Manila clams. Interestingly, clam larval development does not appear to be impacted to the degree observed in oysters. High-throughput sequencing (Illumina HiSeq) analysis has been carried out to compare whole transcriptome differences in clams exposed to elevated carbon dioxide. Preliminarily, results indicate differentially expressed genes are generally associated with development, oxidative stress, and protein metabolism. Similar whole transcriptome analysis is currently being carried out with pinto abalone. Details with respect to ongoing ocean acidification research on oysters and clams can be found at and, respectively.


Gulf of the Farallons National Marine Sanctuary
415-561-6622 x 207

“As the research coordinator for the Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary, my responsibilities include designing research studies, developing and implementing the sanctuary’s conservation science and management plans, and assembling long-term monitoring data to assess the health and extent of pressures on sanctuary resources. I also promote the sanctuary as a sentinel site for research, monitoring, and implementing damage assessment and restoration projects following injuries from natural or human causes.”

Jan graduated with a master’s degree in marine biology. She minored in anatomy and physiology, concentrating on the behavior and health of marine mammals and seabirds.


Hog Island Oyster Company
415-663-9218 x 203

Terry Sawyer was born and raised on Florida’s Atlantic coast. He grew up fishing, swimming, sailing and exploring the sea. But farming was his family’s heritage so instead he found a way to merge his two worlds by raising sustainably-farmed shellfish in Tomales Bay, CA.

Terry earned a degree in marine biology and ecosystems at UC Santa Cruz, CA. In college Terry began a career with the Monterey Bay Aquarium, specializing in animal husbandry. He left the aquarium in 1988 to become a partner with Hog Island Oyster Co. Today, Hog Island Oyster Co. is one of the premier sustainable aquaculture farms on the west coast. Leasing 160 acres in Tomales Bay, Hog Island raises over three million oysters, manila clams and mussels each year.


University of California, Santa Barbara

Dr. Stephen Schroeter is a marine ecologist at the University of California, Santa Barbara’s Marine Science Institute, working in nearshore systems including kelp forest, rocky intertidal, and coastal wetland habitats. His applied work includes assessment of anthropogenic impacts and the performance of impact mitigation and management activities. In recent years, Schroeter has worked on designing and implementing protocols to collect information needed to assess and manage the red sea urchin and rock crab fisheries in California, with an emphasis on collaboration among a community-based fishery, scientists and regulators. This work includes the design and implementation of long-term settlement monitoring as a sustainable, cost-effective and fishery-independent measure of stock health.

Schroeter received a BS and MS in Zoology at Brigham Young University in 1969 and 1972 respectively, and a PhD in Ecology at UC Santa Barbara in 1978.


C-CAN Coordinator
Director, California Wetfish Producers

Diane Pleschner-Steele (DB Pleschner) has been involved in west coast fisheries for more than 30 years, beginning as a feature writer and contributing editor for Pacific Fishing magazine, covering fisheries and environmental issues from California to British Columbia. Currently she serves as Executive Director of the non-profit California Wetfish Producers Association (CWPA), representing California’s historic wetfish industry, which has produced 80 percent or more of statewide commercial fishery landings since the turn of the 20th century. CWPA is a partner in collaborative research, working with the Department of Fish and Game and National Marine Fisheries Service, SW Fisheries Science Center. Pleschner-Steele is also active in the Pacific Fishery Management Council process, representing California’s wetfish fishery on the Coastal Pelagic Species Advisory Subpanel. She also serves on the California Sea Grant Advisory Board, and managed the California Seafood Council, an advisory board to the California Department of Food and Agriculture, during its tenure 1991-2003.


California sea urchin diver
Commercial fisherman

Bruce Steele has spent more than 35 years in the ocean as a commercial sea urchin diver and fisherman. His affiliations include a decade on the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Council, stints on the California Department of Fish and Game (DFG) Sea Urchin Advisory Committee and Sea Grant Living Mrine Resources Committee. He also served as a member of the team of technical consultants to the sea otter recovery team. Bruce’s personal gauge of involvement in management is to what extent it can help conserve ocean resources as a whole. Bruce has had extensive experience with DFG fishery conservation and management through grass-roots efforts to conserve the sea urchin industry. He sees involvement of industry as essential to the effectiveness of any conservation / management approach. He became alarmed about ocean acidification after reading a scientific paper on Japanese sea urchins in 2005, reporting laboratory studies finding potential impacts on sea urchins.


San Francisco State University

Dr. Jonathan Stillman obtained his undergraduate degree from the University of Minnesota and his doctoral degree from Oregon State University with George Somero. Half of his doctoral research was based at Stanford University’s Hopkins Marine Station. Following the completion of his doctorate, he was a postdoctoral researcher in protein thermodynamics at Johns Hopkins University, a visiting professor of molecular biology and biochemistry at Occidental College, and then a postdoctoral fellow in environmental physiology at Stanford University. Dr. Stillman joined the faculty of Zoology at the University of Hawaii at Manoa as an assistant professor, and then moved to the Romberg Tiburon Center, a marine laboratory of San Francisco State University, where he is now an Associate Professor. Dr. Stillman also holds an adjunct faculty position at the University of California Berkeley in the Department of Integrative Biology. Current research projects in his laboratory include the effects of climate change and ocean acidification of calcifying phytoplankton called coccolithophores, the impacts of warming and acidification on crabs, responses to salinity variation in an invasive clam in San Francisco Bay, and the ecophysiology of aquatic insects in coastal California rivers. His research approach blends whole organism physiology with cellular, biochemical, and genome-level approaches. Dr. Stillman’s research has been published in over 30 publications, including in Science. His research has been featured on a television program produced by National Geographic “Strange Days on Planet Earth.” His research is presently funded by the National Science Foundation, the US Bureau of Reclamation, NOAA, and the Moore Foundation. Dr. Stillman resides in Berkeley California with his wife and two daughters.


Pacific Shellfish Institute

Andy Suhrbier is a senior shellfish biologist at Pacific Shellfish Institute, where he has worked for the past 11 years, focusing on a wide range of shellfish-centric topics. He is involved in PSI’s marine benthic/water quality sampling and analysis, mapping of marine habitats, data analysis, project development and management. Currently he is working on projects studying the interactions of shellfish culture with the natural environment; organic pollutants and bacterial contaminants on bivalve shellfish; and disease and environmental stress studies of shellfish, including ocean acidification.


NOAA Pacific Marine Environmental Lab

“My current research focus is on characterizing the extent and magnitude of ocean acidification in the surface of coastal and open ocean waters. Specifically, I am interested in using interdisciplinary approaches to explore how local and regional biogeochemical mechanisms drive variations in ocean carbon chemistry across time and space. One of these approaches uses bio-optical sensors to understand the biologically-driven uptake of carbon dioxide in the ocean.

I am also interested in how science can inform management and policy discussions. I worked in Washington DC as a Sea Grant Knauss Marine Policy Fellow and Congressional Affairs Specialist at NOAA for 3 years covering ocean and atmospheric research topics, especially climate change, addressed by the U.S. Congress. I continue to pursue my interests in science policy and outreach.”

PhD, Oceanography, University of Maryland, 2006


San Francisco State University

Dr. Anne Todgham is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biology at San Francisco State University. Todgham is an environmental physiologist with an interest in understanding the molecular, biochemical and physiological strategies that animals use to cope with environmental change. Currently her work has an eye towards global climate change and addresses the general question of whether contemporary marine animals have the physiological flexibility necessary to withstand the unprecedented rates of environmental change, specifically ocean warming and acidification. Todgham studies a wide variety of organisms from estuarine as well as temperate and polar marine ecosystems. She earned her B.Sc. in Marine Biology at the University of Guelph, Canada and her Ph.D. in Zoology from the University of British Columbia, Canada.


University of Washington

Oyster Seed Group

“My interests are centered at the intersection of natural history and environmental sustainability. During the academic year I teach Introductory Biology (BIOL180), Invertebrate Zoology (BIOL434), and Foundations of Ecology (BIOL356). I also try to inspire as many students as possible to get involved in our campus organic farm.

During summers, I work out on the Washington Coast, primarily around Willapa Bay, on experiments designed to determine the mechanisms behind questions like:

  • What are the impacts of the invasion of Zostera japonica (non-native eelgrass) on tideflat physical conditions and species interactions?
  • How does eelgrass impact aquaculture?
  • What impacts does shellfish aquaculture have on eelgrass?
  • What is preventing our native oyster population from recovering?
  • How is recruitment of Pacific oysters (Crassotrea gigas) changing over time?
  • Do oysters, burrowing shrimp and eelgrass represent the dominant species in alternative stable community states?
  • Do consumers control burrowing shrimp populations; what are the few remaining sturgeon eating anyway?

I also spend a great deal of time learning how to move our farm to self-sufficiency through projects with wind power, solar power, composting (including toilets), grey water irrigation, rain catchment cisterns, livestock and organic food production.


University of Washington
School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences

Dr. Brent Vadopalas is a Principal Research Scientist at the University of Washington’s School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences, focusisng on conservation genetics in marine invertebrates. His current research includes assessing the effects of ocean acidification on Puget Sound shellfish. Other recent projects involved application of quantitative polymerase chain reaction technology to quantify pelagic marine invertebrate larvae, use of triploidy in shellfish aquaculture for genetic conservation, and design of reintroduction strategies for Haliotis kamtschatkana and Ostrea lurida. Vadopalas received both his MS in Fisheries and PhD in Aquatic and Fishery Sciences from the University of Washington


Oregon State University
College of Oceanic and Atmospheric Sciences

Dr. George Waldbusser is an Assistant Professor in the College of Oceanic and Atmospheric Sciences (COAS) at Oregon State University. Waldbusser’s general interests are benthic biogeochemistry and ecology, with focus on both how organisms affect biogeochemistry and how biogeochemistry impacts organisms. He has strong interests in estuarine carbonate cycling and the many processes that regulate pH in coastal and etuarine environments, particularly those with possible consequences to bivalves. He has recently been working on the role of pH and saturation state in structuring infaunal and epifaunal bivalve populations. His interest in bivalve ecology spans back to undergraduate research of oyster recruitment dynamics in the Hudson-Raritan River estuarine complex. Waldbusser received his PhD in marine and estuarine environmental science from the University of Maryland, and his MS in oceanography from University of Connecticut.


Sustainable Fisheries Partnership

Brad Warren directs the Productive Oceans Partnership, the Sustainable Fisheries Partnership’s program on ocean acidification. This program works to inform and prepare the seafood industry to address challenges to fishery productivity that arise from ocean acidification and related changes in seawater chemistry. As a journalist and consultant, Warren has worked on fisheries conservation and marine resource management since the early 1980s. He was editor of Pacific Fishing magazine from 1996 to 2004, and a correspondent and editor for National Fisherman from 1981 to 1996.