Meet our Staff

Contact Us

For general inquiries:
(912) 598-2345 (office phone)
(912) 598-2367 (fax)

Group of Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary staff members sitting outside on the side of a fountain

Sanctuary Staff

Stan Rogers

Stan Rogers
Superintendent | 912.598.2428

Stan is the Superintendent at Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary joining the sanctuary in 2019, continuing his 20+ year career with government service. Stan previously worked for NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) where he most recently supervised policy, planning and evaluation, data management, and communications activities for NOAA's Restoration Center in the Office of Habitat Conservation. Prior to that, he served as a senior consultation biologist for NMFS' Office of Protected Resources leading national programmatic consultations with the U.S. Navy and other Department of Defense training and testing activities worldwide, pursuant to the Endangered Species Act and Marine Mammal Protection Act.

Prior to joining NOAA in 2011, Stan spent 15 years with the Department of Defense as a civilian natural resources and conservation law enforcement program manager for the Air Force. There he was responsible for natural resource conservation programs on military lands and waters around the Continental U.S., Alaska, and Hawai'i. He also administered environmental programs in overseas locations including Greenland, Ascension Island, and Antigua.

Stan is a native of the lowcountry of South Carolina and a graduate of Clemson University. He began his career as a consulting wildlife biologist in the Carolinas and Georgia working with private and corporate landowners and is fortunate to return "home" to be a steward of Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary.

Elliott Lam

Elliott Lam
State Program Manager | 912.598.2439

Elliott Lam arrived at Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary in 2018. In his role on the management team, Elliott's main responsibilities include coordinating support with our primary partner, the University of Georgia's Skidaway Institute of Oceanography, program planning and implementation, and partnerships with stakeholders. His interest in marine resources management grew out of experiences as a youth fishing along the marshes of the South Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico and diving in the Florida Keys. Elliott honed his skills while working at Rare, an international NGO, in their Philippines office. There, he worked with local governments and marginal anglers to establish scientifically sound, ecosystem-based fisheries and habitat management. Elliott holds a M.S. in Environmental and Natural Resource Management from the University of the Philippines and a B.S. in Government from Berry College.

Duties: grant management, finance, facilities, IT, operations, program planning, recreational fishing and diving

Kathy Liu

Kathy Liu
Sanctuary Program Specialist/Sea Grant Fellow | 912.231.3986

Kathy Liu joined the Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary team in September 2023 as a Georgia Sea Grant Fellow. In her role as sanctuary program specialist, Kathy helps advance scientific research, policy, and planning projects and offers support to outreach and education programs. Her interests in marine biology, ecology, and conservation began during her semester abroad in Panama in 2018 where she learned and applied a multitude of research field techniques to study an array of habitats and organisms. That provided groundwork for her to study impacts of varying levels of management on intertidal mollusks in central Chile for her undergraduate thesis. Most recently, Kathy studied bonnethead shark head morphology and diet in Florida and aided in long-term monitoring of shark populations in Biscayne Bay as an intern with Field School and member of Minorities in Shark Sciences. Kathy holds a Master of Science from the University of Miami Rosenstiel School and a Bachelor of Arts from Scripps College in Claremont, CA where she majored in Biology and minored in Spanish.

Duties: scientific research, sanctuary science plan, outreach and intern program support, resource condition assessment, vessel crew

Scott Kathey

Scott Kathey
Resource Protection Coordinator | 912.598.2381

Scott Kathey joined the Gray's Reef team in December 2020. He began working for the National Marine Sanctuary System in 1992 as a graduate intern with the Olympic Coast and Proposed Northwest Straits national marine sanctuary programs in Washington state. Two years later, he accepted a position at Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary in California as a resource protection specialist. In this role, Scott coordinated a variety of tasks over 26 years such as regulatory compliance, environmental enforcement, emergency response planning/operations, permitting, marine policy, advisory council administration, buoy system management, salvage contracting and oversight, small boat management, and boat/dive/air operations. As resource protection coordinator at Gray's Reef, Scott is responsible for resource protection policy development and implementation, permitting, advisory council administration, sanctuary management planning, regulatory interpretation and development, enforcement, environmental emergency response, and support for sanctuary boat, dive, and air operations. Scott gained a love for the sea during visits to the Gulf Coast as a child and entered the marine protection field to play an active role in ocean stewardship. During his professional career in local and federal coastal zone management, he has applied a combination of policy, regulatory, administrative, and social tools to prevent and minimize threats to natural resources and processes across urban shorelines, national wildlife refuges, and national marine sanctuaries. Scott holds a Master of Marine Affairs from University of Washington with a concentration in Coastal Management, and a Bachelor of Arts in International Affairs from George Washington University with a concentration in International Politics.

Duties: policy development, permitting, advisory council, management planning, regulations, enforcement, emergency response, and field operations support

Headshot photo of George Poole

George Poole
Vessel Captain | 912.349.9567

George joined the Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary operations team in October 2023. He is the primary Captain responsible as the primary operator the R/V Gannet assisting the Vessel Operation Coordinator in maintaining and coordinating sanctuary vessels and equipment. His passion for the ocean started 41 years ago when he became a certified diver, he holds multiple ratings from Public Safety Diving, scientific diving, technical diving to Scuba Instructor. Prior to joining GRNMS, he operated as private contract Captain in the Florida Keys operating commercial dive vessels and teaching basic seamanship and coastal navigation. He is a veteran of the US Navy and US Army and a retired Georgia Public Safety Officer. He holds a USCG 200 Ton Masters Captain license and an A.A. in History and General studies from American Military University.

Duties: vessel operations, maintenance, and planning

Benjamin Prueitt

Benjamin Prueitt
Outreach & Social Media Coordinator and Volunteer Coordinator | 912.598.2434

Ben Prueitt joined the Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary communications team in 2019. As outreach and social media coordinator, he is responsible for the sanctuary's digital media, website, and social media channels. Ben also coordinates the volunteer and internship programs, and the community events of the sanctuary. His interest in communicating science began with marine education programs for teens in his home waters around Tampa Bay in Florida. Since, Ben developed media products for the New York-Pennsylvania Professional Baseball League, monitored long-term changes on reefs and in Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary and Dry Tortugas National Park, and managed communications and marketing for an oil spill research consortium at the University of South Florida (USF) College of Marine Science. Ben holds a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science & Policy from USF St. Petersburg.

Duties: social media, web management, volunteer and internship program, media relations, graphics, public events, community engagement, exhibits

Kim Roberson

Kim Roberson
Research Coordinator and Unit Diving Supervisor | 912.598.2382

Kimberly Roberson joined Gray's Reef in 2016. She is the sanctuary's research coordinator, responsible for the science conducted at the site. Kim leads Gray's Reef's science team in determining research that will best inform conservation management of the sanctuary and help us better understand the ocean and the marine life that lives there. She also coordinates research activities conducted by partner organizations and other scientists that study Gray's Reef. Kim uses diving as a tool for research and also serves as the sanctuary's unit diving supervisor. In that role, she supervises the Gray's Reef Dive Team. Kim has been a NOAA certified diver since 2005 and a NOAA divemaster since 2006. She was the first female chair of the NOAA Diving Control and Safety Board and served as NOAA's National Ocean Service diving officer for three years.

Prior to joining Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary, Kim worked as a marine biologist with NOAA's National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science's (NCCOS) Biogeography Branch, where she managed Caribbean field and science research and an active 18-member dive team. Prior to joining NOAA, Kim worked with the National Park Service on St. Croix, USVI. There she managed the sea turtle research program, other threatened and endangered species protection and invasive eradication efforts, and coral reef monitoring. Kim holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Berry College in Rome, Georgia and an Master of Science in Biology from Acadia University in Wolfville, Nova Scotia, where she conducted genetics research on leatherback sea turtles, exploring connectivity between nesting populations and pelagic individuals.

Duties: science, research, science team supervision and coordination, diving supervision and safety, divemaster

Ensign Cassidy Ring

Lt.j.g. Cassidy Ring
Vessel Operations Coordinator | 912.657.0526

Lt.j.g. Cassidy Ring joined Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary as the Vessel Operations Coordinator in 2022. She coordinates small boat operations as well as supports dive operations for the sanctuary as a NOAA Dive Master. Lt.j.g. Ring's previous assignment was aboard the NOAA Ship Oregon II in Pascagoula, MS concluding her tour as Navigation Officer and spending some time as acting Operations Officer. On Oregon II, L.t.j.g. Ring sailed throughout the Gulf of Mexico, as well as along the U.S. East Coast, as far north as Cape Hatteras, North Carolina conducting plankton surveys, shark and red snapper longline operations, and trawling for groundfish population studies. Before joining the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps, she worked as an Environmental Compliance Specialist for FEMA, supporting hurricane recovery efforts in her hometown of Wilmington, North Carolina following Hurricane Florence in 2018. She completed two bachelor's degrees in biology and marine sciences at North Carolina State University, where she also minored in Spanish and zoology and competed on the club rowing and club rugby teams. Lt.j.g. Ring continues to play rugby competitively and is passionate about growing the sport, spending time outdoors, and giving her two rescue pups the best life possible.

Duties: vessel operations, safety, vessel maintenance, dive support, budgeting

Katie Sandefur

Katie Sandefur
Education Outreach Assistant | 912.328.3986

Katie Sandefur joined Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary team in October 2023, affiliated with NOAA through the University of Georgia Skidaway Institute of Oceanography. In her role as Education Outreach Assistant, Katie assists in the day-to-day operations of the GRNMS Ocean Discovery Center, including outreach programs and volunteer staffing. Before joining Gray's Reef, Katie developed education outreach programs and visitor initiatives for the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, State Parks, and Historical Sites. It was during this experience that she discovered her profound passion for educating the community on the preservation and conservation of our local flora and fauna, underscoring the importance of environmental stewardship. Katie holds a Bachelor of Science in Animal Science from Purdue University, where she laid the academic foundation that complements her dedication to marine and environmental education.

Duties: assisting with the development of key messaging, interpretive programming and daily operations for the center

Alison Soss

Alison Soss
Geospatial Data Analyst | 912.598.2431

Alison Soss was first part of the Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary science team between 2014-2016 working as a research program specialist. In 2019, she was hired back on as a research program specialist and geospatial analyst. In these roles, she supports research goals by curating and providing geospatial analytical support for the sanctuary. In addition to providing scientific diving and field support, she assists with equipment deployment planning, data management, and mapping outreach materials. Alison's interests in marine research began when she got scuba certified in 2010. She loves the challenges of conducting research underwater and always seeing or hearing something new while out at sea. She also has a passion for social sciences and learning about how humans value and interact with the environment and each other. Her interests have led her to working on offshore research expeditions and social science projects for the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science, the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources and the Skidaway Institute of Oceanography. Alison holds a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies and a Bachelor of Arts in Biology from Emory University. She is currently working on her Master's degree at the College of Charleston in Environmental Studies and Public Administration.

Duties: data management, GIS analysis, cartography, scientific research, scientific diving, research planning, scientific reports, communication and outreach material

Mary Quinn

Mary Quinn
Education and Outreach Specialist | 912.598.2417

Mary Quinn joined Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary in 2023 as a NOAA Affiliate via University of Georgia Skidaway Institute of Oceanography. As the Education and Outreach Specialist, Mary handles day-to-day operations at Gray’s Reef Ocean Discovery Center, including volunteers, visitors, and informal education. She is also responsible for building curriculum and creating educational programming. Mary found a passion for education and outreach while working for marine science nonprofits in the Florida Keys. In the span of two years, Mary taught over 10,000 visiting students about the ecosystems of the Florida Keys, and general threats to marine environments. She holds a B.A. double major in Biology and Creative Writing from Wheaton College, Massachusetts.

Duties: Oversees the Ocean Discovery Center, curriculum development, informal educational program design, events, volunteer program