Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary
Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary
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Rivers to Reefs 2016

Workshop Leaders

Michael Mahan

Michael Mahan, Ed.D
Dean, School of Education
Gordon College, Barnesville, GA

Michael Mahan attended Ball State University, and earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology Education 1976, Master of Arts in 1986 and an Ed. D in Biology Education in 1986. After a varied career as an academic advisor, he returned to high school teaching in New Jersey in 2001, and later returned to university teaching, at Kean University in 2003, as an Assistant Professor of Science Education. He has taught Science and Mathematics methods courses as well as Introductory Biology. In 2006 he accepted a position in Savannah Georgia as Assistant Professor and Department Head of Middle Grade and Secondary Education at Armstrong-Atlantic State Universtiy. He has reviewed grants for NASA, Educational Technology for the State of Georgia. He is currently on the Journal Review team of the National Biology Teachers' Association. He submitted a grant for $1,300,000.00 to the National Science Foundation for the Robert Noyce Program. Dr. Mahan has many presentations and publications in science education, and is currently a Board of Examiners member for the PSC in Georgia.


Kim Morris-Zarneke

Kim Morris-Zarneke
Manager of Education Programs
Georgia Aquarium, Atlanta, GA

Kim is the Manager of Education Programs for the Georgia Aquarium and responsible for curriculum developments, partnerships, professional development, and assessment. Kim has a Bachelor of Science degree in biology and minor in environmental science from State University of New York at Geneseo and Master of Science in Biology-Aquarium Science from the University of Maryland. In addition, Kim has taken continuing education course in conservation education and has received a certificate in distance learning and environmental education. Prior to joining the aquarium in July 2005, Kim worked with the Department of Natural Resources - Environmental Protection Division's Adopt-A-Stream program training citizens, teachers and students in water quality monitoring and coordinating the annual Rivers Alive water way cleanup program. Kim also worked at Zoo Atlanta as their distance learning manager and the National Aquarium in Baltimore as their conservation coordinator.
For the last ten years Kim has served on the Environmental Education Alliance of Georgia's Board and Advisory Board, guiding this professional organization as a leader in environmental education for the State of Georgia. Currently Kim is serving as co-chair of the Advanced Training for Environmental Education in Georgia Project, which provides training to formal and non formal educator about environmental education. Kim also has been a member of GAME for the last five years, serving on the 2008 NMEA conference committee.


Michelle Riley

Michelle Riley
Communications, Outreach & Education Coordinator
Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary
  Savannah, GA

Michelle Riley joined Gray's Reef in 2015 and serves as the communications and public outreach coordinator. She worked in the international humanitarian sector for almost 20 years, serving as external affairs director for the Lifeline Energy Foundation and as a communications officer for former U.S. President Jimmy Carter at The Carter Center. A native of Galveston County, Texas, Michelle graduated from Pepperdine University in California and has lived in Savannah, GA for 12 years. She moved to Savannah to be near the ocean and thoroughly enjoyed volunteering for the Tybee Island Marine Science Center and The Dolphin Project.


Cathy Sakas

Cathy Sakas
Marine Heritage Program
NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries

Cathy officially retired as the education coordinator from NOAA Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary on January 31, 2014 and that next Monday morning on February 3rd began working as a contractor on several different projects. So in essence she hasn't really retired. She says she just gets to work from home and doesn't have to wake up to an alarm clock nor drive to the office in rush hour traffic. Works for her! Cathy is currently finishing up a documentary on shifting baselines in fisheries and working with NOAA Maritime Heritage Program to highlight African Americans through historical wrecks and with the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation as chair of the non-profit chapter that supports Gray's Reef. Added to that she is completing many short stories of her experiences on remote wilderness trips she led over the past four decades throughout the southeast, Caribbean and Central America as a professional interpretive naturalist.


Theresa Stanley

Theresa Stanley, Ph.D
Professor of Biology,
Gordon State College, Barnesville, GA

Theresa Stanley attended the University of California Davis, where she earned her Bachelor of Science in microbiology ('93). She then earned her M.S. (1996) and Ph.D (1999) at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, also in microbiology. She began her teaching career at Gordon State in 1998, where she has remained. She teaches a wide range of courses, including introductory biology, microbiology, and philosophy and ethics of biology. When not in the classroom, she enjoys spending time exploring the natural beauty of Georgia, especially when it involves exploring a beach.


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