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2007 Florida Keys Mission
Mission info 2007 Nancy Foster Cruise
 

2009 Expedition Team
Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary

Lonny AndersonLonny Anderson
NOAA's Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary
Survey Team Member

Lonny Anderson moved to the Florida Keys in 1990 to join the Florida Wildlife Research Institute's Queen Conch enhancement program. During his eight years with the Institute, he participated in various research projects including Strombus gigas stock assessment and enhancement (from Miami to the Dry Tortugas) and Caribbean spiny lobster and fish population dynamics. In 1998, Lonny progressed into a full-time marine biologist position at The Keys Marine Laboratory on Long Key. While there, he assisted visiting scientists with their research projects and also held the position of Unit Dive Safety Officer. Over the years at KML, he was invited to participate in the FWRI's Coral Reef Monitoring Program which allowed him to become more familiar with the Florida Keys Reef Track and the various factors that influence coral reef health. Recently, Lonny was hired by NOAA's Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary as a member of the Damage Assessment and Restoration Team. Much of his time is spent assessing damage cause by vessel groundings, and developing and implementing restoration strategies for these impacts to FKNMS resources. Lonny was invited to participate on this year's Coral Disease Cruise and is excited to learn more about the problems facing coral reefs here in The Florida Keys and do what can be done to communicate these issues to the public.

Geoff CookGeoff Cook
George Mason University
Co-Principal Investigator

After making his first SCUBA dive at the age of eleven, Geoff's academic and life interests centered on marine biology and, to a greater extent, coral reef ecology. While earning a B.S. in Biology at Virginia Tech, Geoff spent a year researching the effects of over fishing and destructive fishing practices on coral reef ecosystems in both Australia and Fiji. These experiences subsequently enabled Geoff to obtain additional employment and research opportunities in Hawai'i and the Republic of Palau. Having worked around the world as a SCUBA diving guide and instructor, sea kayak guide, boat captain, photographer, and field biologist, Geoff returned to Washington, D.C. in 2003 to pursue his graduate studies. His current research examines the etiology, epizootiology, and ecological ramifications of infectious diseases affecting coral reefs throughout the wider Caribbean region. Geoff is a PhD candidate at George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia and will be completing his dissertation on comparing bacterial communities associated with diseased and apparently healthy corals in December of 2008.

Scott DonahueScott Donahue
NOAA's Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary
Chief Scientist

Scott Donahue is serving a chief scientist for this year's cruise. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Biology in 1994 from the University of South Florida, Tampa campus. Shortly thereafter, he joined a team of researchers studying Caribbean spiny lobster biology and ecology at the Florida Wildlife Research Institute's Marathon field laboratory (Florida Keys). After three years with the Institute, Scott went on to pursue his Masters degree with Dr. Mark J. Butler, IV, at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia, studying sponge ecology in the Florida Keys. His thesis research aimed to: determine if large sponges contribute to hydrodynamic maintenance of sediment depth around them via the localized scouring of adjacent sediments; determine if there is a relationship between the local diversity and biomass of sponges and their recruits in shallow hard-bottom areas; and determine the growth and survival of sponge transplants inside and outside of areas historically susceptible to sponge die-off events to assess the suitability of these sites for sponge regrowth. Once his thesis research was complete, Scott was hired by NOAA's Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary (FKNMS) as coral reef Damage Assessment and Restoration biologist. Scott held that position for three years, and has been serving as the Associate Science Coordinator since 2006.

Sarah FangmanSarah Fangman
NOAA's Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary
Cruise Dive Master and Survey team member

Sarah Fangman is participating in the Florida Keys Coral Reef Disease Survey for the third year, and is serving as Divemaster for the cruise. She works in the Southeast Region of the National Marine Sanctuary Program and is based at the Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary office. Sarah received her bachelor's degree in Environmental Studies and Biology at Middlebury College in Vermont and her graduate degree at the University of Washington's School of Marine Affairs. Originally from Minnesota, Sarah now lives in Savannah, Georgia with her husband and great dane.

George Stanley GarrettGeorge Stanley Garrett
Planning Director for the City of Marathon
Survey Team Member

Mr. Garrett is currently the Planning Director for the City of Marathon, living and working in the heart of the Florida Keys. George comes by his interest in the annual NOAA, FKNMS Coral Disease honestly. Growing up in California in the 1960s and 70s, dreams about the oceans were common to many at that time. Jacques Cousteau beckoned the minds of many young scientists and adventurers, leading George to begin diving at the age of 12, to an interest in biology, and ultimately to attend college in the sciences. Mr. Garrett attended the University of California at Santa Cruz where he earned Bachelor of Arts degrees in biology and chemistry. Many hours were spent diving the kelp beds of Hopkins Marine Lab near where today we go to see the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Common companions during these cold foreès into the ocean forests were seals and sea otters, who as often as not were just curious, but as frequently could convert a dive into mischievous play. Following his dream of the seas, George attended the University of Rhode Island where he attained a Master of Science degree in zoology working for a time with the American lobster, Homerus americanus. On a whim before returning to California and in search of endangered critters on the Keys uplands, George came to Florida in 1984. A brief stint with the state Department of Natural Resources, Aquatic Preserve program led to becoming the Director of Environmental Resources with Monroe County, the Florida Keys. In 1991, Mr. Garrett became the Sr. Director of Marine Resources for the County and later, GIS Services would be added to the list of County responsibilities. George helped in the efforts to draft the first Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary Management Plan, authoring pieces of its background and data elements and one of its Action Plans. Ultimately, Mr. Garrett was the project manager for both the Wastewater and Stormwater Management Master Plans for the unincorporated Florida Keys. These were key elements of the County’s Comprehensive Plan and a crucial component of the Sanctuary’s Water Quality Protection Program. Currently George works for the progressive City of Marathon which is currently bringing dreams to reality in a tightly integrated, state of the art stormwater and wastewater system designed to limit its nutrient load to the surrounding marine environment.

Mike Henley
Smithsonian's National Zoo
Survey Team Member

Mike Henley is a biologist and aquarist with the Smithsonian’s National Zoo. In addition to managing the zoo’s coral collection, he is also collaborating with other zoos and aquariums throughout the U.S. and Europe in a project called SECORE. Together, they are trying to help save the threatened Elkhorn Coral (Acropora palmata) and Staghorn Coral (Acropora cervicornis) of the Caribbean by capturing the corals’ gametes during their annual mass spawn. They hope to establish a captive population of this ecologically important species, while also learning more about its biology and best captive rearing practices with the eventual goal of a reef reintroduction/restoration project.

Lauri MaclaughlinLauri Maclaughlin
NOAA's Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary
Co-Principal Investigator

Lauri is one of the senior scientists on the cruise this year, with twenty-one years of work diving experience including videography, photography and over 1900 logged dives. She received a certificate of Marine Science from Wallops Island Marine Science Consortium (Virginia) in 1981, then received her Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Penn State in 1983. Shortly thereafter, Lauri was hired by (then) Looe Key National Marine Sanctuary as a staff biologist and has been working for the NOAA's National Marine Sanctuaries Program ever since. Currently, Lauri is a Resource Manager for NOAA's Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary, and is involved in researching and monitoring coral reef resources. She serves as a co-principal investigator and also coordinates the FKNMS Coral Disease & Bleaching Response cruises, annual coral-spawn monitoring cruises, and regional Flower Gardens Banks National Marine Sanctuary Coral Disease and Benthic Characterization cruises. Lauri is an active participant of the U.S. Coral Reef Task Force including the Southeast Florida Coral Reef Initiative Local Area Strategy planning (SEFCRI), Coral Reef Conservation Program sponsored "Responding to Climate Change Workshops for MPA Managers" (trainer and coordinator), and member of the Climate Change Working Group. Her other FKNMS responsibilities include regulatory environmental permit reviews, site surveys, inspections, inter-agency coordination, permit conditioning, and specializing in coral rescue and relocation training programs and coral nursery partnership development.

Kathleen MorrowKathleen Morrow
Auburn University
Survey Team Member

Ms. Morrow has been inspired by the complexity of coral reef ecosystems since childhood and has extensively studied the ecology of cnidarians for the past 9 years. She completed her B.S. degree with a minor in chemistry from The University of North Carolina at Wilmington (UNCW) in May 2003. She completed an undergraduate honors thesis on the effect of Diadema antillarum, long-spined sea urchins, on coral-algal interactions. These studies were conducted in coordination with Dr. Alina Szmant (UNCW) and Dr. Margaret Miller (U of Miami). Ms. Morrow completed a Master's degree in August 2006 from California State University Northridge under the advisement of Dr. Robert Carpenter. Her Master's research was conducted along Santa Catalina Island and primarily focused on the study of kelp forest community ecology and biomechanics (see CV for publications). These studies examined the interactions between a common corallimorpharian anemone and macroalgae, and are applicable to her current research on coral-algal competition on Caribbean coral reefs. Ms. Morrow has recently completed her second year as a Ph.D. student at Auburn University under the advisement of Dr. Nanette Chadwick. Her dissertation research examines the community structure and stability of coral-algal-microbial associations. The microorganisms living in association with corals are highly diverse and abundant, but their ecological roles as beneficial symbionts and/or pathogens are poorly understood. Environmentally induced stress is implicated in an increased prevalence and severity of coral disease, bleaching, and mortality. Thus, competition-induced stress from encroaching macroalgae also may confound the stability and function of coral-microbial associations. Macroalgae utilize both physical and chemical competitive mechanisms that have the potential to rapidly alter the coral-microbial assemblage. Ms. Morrow's doctoral research will quantify the natural microbial community associated with non-diseased corals and those exposed to physical and chemical interactions with macroalgae using culture-dependent and -independent methods (e.g. molecular analysis of bacterial community fingerprints). She hopes to develop a baseline for comparison so that researchers may better determine the mechanisms leading to the initiation and progression of coral disease. These studies are currently conducted off the coast of Summerland Key, Florida and St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands.

Joshua VossJoshua D. Voss, Ph.D
Robertson Coral Reef Program at Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute
Co-Principal Investigator

Dr. Voss's research focuses on coral disease distributions and the environmental factors that potentially drive disease dynamics, including the short- and long-term effects of disease on coral community and population structure. The majority of his field work has been conducted in the Florida Keys and Bahamas, with additional forays to Panama, Curacao, Bonaire, Dominica, and St. Eustatius. Through the Robertson Coral Reef Program at Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, Josh endeavors to integrate new molecular technologies with experimental and monitoring approaches to better understand the mechanisms that determine coral health. His additional research interests include molecular profiling of microbial communities, marine conservation and management strategy development, artificial reef design and implementation, efforts toward integration both within and between academic disciplines, and development of field-based courses that combine biology with local history, seamanship skills, and community outreach.

After growing up on the beaches of central Florida near Orlando, Josh attended Elon University in North Carolina and completed a B.S. in biology along with minors in philosophy, chemistry, and sociology. During his undergraduate years he studied field ecology in Belize, completed course work and a research assistantship at the Duke University Marine Laboratory, and was a Perry Institute for Marine Science Research Fellow at the Caribbean Marine Research Center in the Bahamas. These experiences, along with the exceptional educational programs and professors at Elon, solidified Josh's decision to pursue a career as an academic in marine science. Josh completed his Ph.D. at Florida International University in Miami, and was a member of the marine science faculty at Eckerd College before accepting his current position with HBOI at Florida Atlantic University.

Clare WagstaffClare Wagstaff
Mote Marine Laboratory
Survey Team Member

Clare Wagstaff is a middle school science teacher from Buffalo, NY. She is aboard the cruise as part of the NOAA Teacher At Sea program, which aims to get educators in the field to experience science research first-hand and relate this experience back to their classes and the wider community. Born and raised in England, Clare moved to the USA seven years ago and developed a passion for oceanography after she learned to scuba dive in Lake Erie. She current teachers 6th and 8th grade science at Elmwood Franklin School and is a teaching assistant with the American Museum of Natural History in NYC.

While on board the Nancy Foster, Clare will be composing various log entries that can be read at http://teacheratsea.noaa.gov/ regarding her experiences and adventures during the next eight days. She is extremely excited and feels very privileged to be a part of such an interesting and important scientific mission.

Corey WalterCory Walter
Survey Team Member

After graduating from Millersville University in 1997 with a Bachelor's degree in Marine Biology, Cory completed an internship at the Dolphin Research Center in the Florida Keys. After her internship, she continued working in the Keys as a mate on coral reef Eco-tour snorkel boat, until she took a position as a husbandry manager for a large tropical fish collector that supplied marine life to public aquariums all over the world. In 2004, Cory accepted a staff biologist position with Mote Marine Laboratory's Tropical Research Lab located in Summerland Key, Florida. Here, Cory is program coordinator for both BleachWatch and the Marine Ecosystem Event Response and Assessment (MEERA). These are both community-based monitoring projects, and are funded by NOAA's Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. She also assists other agencies with south Florida marine ecosystem monitoring and scientific collections, including FKNMS's annual Coral Disease (monitoring) Cruise.

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