Ronald Baird--University of Rhode Island

Ronald BairdUniversity of Rhode Island

Dr. Ronald Baird is an adjunct Professor at the Graduate School of Oceanography and adviser to Rhode Island Sea Grant. He previously served as Director of the National Sea Grant College Program and Associate Director for Ocean Research in the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and as a Research Professor at the University of North Carolina Wilmington’s Center for Marine Science. He also was a Professor in the College of Marine Science/USF from 1969 – 1978. His interests include biological oceanography, systematics, and the distribution of deep-sea fishes.

Peter Betzer--St. Petersburg Downtown Partnership

Peter BetzerSt. Petersburg Downtown Partnership

Dr. Peter Betzer is the President of the St. Petersburg Downtown Partnership, which is a not-for-profit organization which works to support and expand our internationally-acclaimed marine research, medical and technology complex and promotes urban (sustainable) growth and redevelopment in downtown St. Petersburg, Florida. Dr. Betzer also is the former Dean of the College of Marine Science/USF and a Professor in Chemical Oceanography. His research interests include the role of particulate materials in biogeochemical cycles.

Kendall Carder--SRI International

Kendall CarderSRI International

Dr. Kendall Carder is currently a Senior Optical Scientist at SRI International. He was a Professor in the College of Marine Science from 1969 to 2007 and a Program Manager for the Ocean Productivity Program at NASA Headquarters, Washington, D.C. from 1980 - 1982. His interests include physical oceanography, ocean optics, suspended-particle dynamics, instrument development, and ocean remote sensing.

Billy Causey--NOAA

Billy CauseyNOAA

Dr. Billy Causey is the Regional Director of the Southeast Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Region for the NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries. His academic interests are in coral reef ecology, coral reef fishes, sustainable management, marine zoning, climate change and marine policy. He was responsible for establishing the first comprehensive marine zoning plan for the United States and has received numerous awards for his work in coral reef conservation.

Robyn Conmy--EPA

Robyn ConmyEPA

Dr. Robyn Conmy is a Research Scientist with the US Environmental Protection Agency, leading the oil research program. Her current research interests are fluorescence fingerprinting of oils, advancing optical tools for spill response, and the photo - and biodegradation of oil in aquatic environments.

Jennifer Dupont--Exxon/Mobile

Jennifer DupontExxon/Mobile

Dr. Jennifer DuPont is an Environment and Regulatory Supervisor with ExxonMobil. Her research interests include remote sensing of coastal regions to aid management decisions and mitigation strategies to reduce noise disturbance in whale populations.

Debi Huffman--Claro Scientific

Debi HuffmanClaro Scientific

Biography: Dr. Huffman received her Bachelors of Science degree in Biotechnology, Masters in Public Health and Ph.D. in Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety from the University of South Florida. Dr. Huffman brings over 20 years of technical experience in infectious disease detection and public health to Claro. She previously held a State of Florida License as a Medical Technologist at the Supervisory Level and managed one of the largest independent clinical laboratories in the State of Florida. Recently retired after 16 years as a faculty Research Associate at the University of South Florida, her work has been dedicated to the development of cultural techniques and molecular methods for the detection of pathogenic and indicator microorganisms in various matrices ranging from bodily fluids to drinking and wastewater.

Wade Jeffrey--Department of Biology, University of West Florida

Wade JeffreyDepartment of Biology, University of West Florida

Dr. Wade Jeffry is a Professor in the Department of Biology and Director for the Center for Environmental Diagnostics and Bioremediation at the University of West Florida. His current interests include oil spill microbiology and effects of ultraviolet radiation on marine microbes.

Christina Kellogg--USGS

Christina KelloggUSGS

Dr. Christina Kellogg leads an environmental microbiology laboratory at the U.S. Geological Survey. She applies molecular techniques to characterize and identify microbial communities, especially in shallow and deepwater corals. Her research on tropical corals has taken her to the Florida Keys, Caribbean, Hawaii, and American Samoa.

Erin Lipp--USGS

Erin LippUSGS

Dr. Erin Lipp is a Professor of Environmental Health Science in the College of Public Health at the University of Georgia. Her research interests include the ecology of human pathogens in coastal systems, coastal water quality and wastewater impacts on coral reefs, climate change and waterborne disease, and oceans and human health.

Melanie McField--Smithsonian

Melanie McFieldSmithsonian

Dr. Melanie McField is the founder and Director of Healthy Reefs for the Healthy People Initiative at the Smithsonian Institution. This initiative is a multi-institutional effort to track the health of reef ecosystems and management progress in ensuring its long-term integrity. Her interests focus on coral reef community ecology, coral bleaching, chemical contamination, and management effectiveness evaluations.

Bill Miller--NSF

Bill MillerNSF

Dr. Bill Miller is currently a Program Director in Chemical Oceanography at the National Science Foundation. He also is a Professor in the Department of Marine Sciences at the University of Georgia. His research interests include photochemical reactions and their effect on aquatic carbon cycles, remote sensing estimates of photochemical processes and biogeochemical impacts, and fluxes of trace gases and their significance to global warming, biogeochemical feedbacks and climate change.

Mike Morris--SpectrEcology

Mike MorrisSpectrEcology

Mike Morris is the president of SpectrEcology LLC. SpectrEcology develops applications for optical sensing for medical, industrial and environmental use and creates new products for spectroscopy, chemical sensing and detection.
Mike also was the founder of Ocean Optics in Dunedin, Florida and President from garage start-up through the sale of the company to Halma plc. in 2004. Mike is now a distributor for Ocean Optics and is also a member of its Board of Directors.

Tracey Sutton--NOVA Southeastern University

Tracey SuttonNOVA Southeastern University

Dr. Tracey Sutton is an Associate Professor in the Department of Marine and Environmental Sciences at NOVA Southeastern University. His research focuses on the quantitative ecology and structure of marine ecosystems, particularly in the deep ocean.

John Paul--USF

John PaulUSF

Dr. John Paul is a Distinguished University Professor in the College of Marine Science specializing in microbial ecology. His group has developed biological sensors to detect harmful microbes, such as Karenia brevis, in the coastal ocean and has developed a "Grouper Forensics" sensor to validate the authenticity of seafood in restaurants and seafood suppliers.

Jyotika Virmani--XPRIZE

Jyotika VirmaniXPRIZE

Dr. Jyotika Virmani is a Senior Director with XPRIZE and is the Prize Lead for the next Ocean XPRIZE. She previously served as the Associate Director of the Florida Institute of Oceanography, as a Senior Scientist at the Met Office (the UK’s national weather service), and as the Executive Director of the Florida Coastal Ocean Observing System Consortium.

Monica Wilson--Florida Sea Grant

Monica WilsonFlorida Sea Grant

Dr. Monica Wilson is a Gulf Oil Spill Research Extension Specialist with Florida Sea Grant. Her role is to transfer information between the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GOMRI) funded oil spill scientists and coastal stakeholders, who are involved in the protection and management of Gulf of Mexico coastal and marine resources.