About Me

Who I am

I received my master’s of science in the Spring of 2003 from the University of Washington School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences and my PhD from Duke University in 2008. Currently, I am working at NOAA’s Southwest Fisheries Science Center in Monterey, CA. My general research interests fall in the realm of ecology and ecological modeling with an added interest in predator-prey relationships, scale, and oceanographic forcing. I have enjoyed living on the west coast and having the ability to hike, bike, surf, and ski without too much travel time.

What I do

In my research, I have used novel technologies such as fisheries acoustics, biologging tags, and oceanographic data paired with spatial statistics to examine predator ecology. Three research questions to date include:

  1. Species Ecology, Movement, and Distribution: How do top predators use both ocean features and prey landscapes to migrate and forage?
  2. Foraging Theory and Behavior: How does prey mediate fine scale foraging ecology and behavioral plasticity of humpback and blue whales?
  3. Climate Variability and Climate Change: How is climate change expected to change pelagic hotspots of biodiversity?
  4. Applied Ecology and Management: How do we use the best ecological information to improve conservation and management?

Why I do it

Ideally this research can be used to understand the effects of oceanographic features on fish distributions and how that relates to the larger community. Knowledge of where and how mid-trophic species aggregate is necessary when trying to manage their predators and the surrounding ecosystem. Furthermore, if we can identify the oceanographic characteristics of key habitat and hotspots, we can predict how these areas might change in the future

If I’m not on the boat collecting data or in the office analyzing it, I can be difficult to find. First, check the soccer field or basketball court, or there is a good chance I am enjoying the Pacific ocean. I also enjoy photography and scuba diving particularly when I can combine both interests.