Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary
Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary
Gray's Reef Expedition 2012
Mission Information
 

Participants in this Expedition

Paul Barbera

Paul Barbera
Fish and Wildlife Research Institute






Keith Borden

Keith Borden
Gray's Reef Team Ocean Diver

Keith E. Borden is a Network Specialist at Savannah College of Art and Design. Keith has done most of his SCUBA diving in Brainerd, Minnesota in the Cyuna iron ore mine range. He enjoys volunteering his time with NOAA as a Diver.


Chris Briand

LTJG Chris Briand
NOAA Corps / Vessel Operations Officer
Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary

As a NOAA Corps Commissioned Officer, Chris reported to Gray's Reef in January, 2011 to begin his three year shore tour. As Vessel Operations Coordinator he works with Chief Scientists to schedule the vessels for their operational needs, accounts for the marine operations budget and as well as maintenance of the vessels.
Originally from Lowell, Massachusetts, Chris joined the U.S. Air Force after high school and traveled to various bases around the world as an aircraft mechanic. After his Air Force tour he attended college at University of Massachusetts, Boston and received a B.S. degree in Geography with a GIS Certificate. While attending college, Chris found his love for the water by working as a deck hand for a tug and oil response team in Boston harbor. After college Chris joined the Vermont Army National Guard and served as a crew chief on Blackhawk helicopters. He deployed to Iraq with the 101st Airborne Medavacs and ironically found out about NOAA while operating in the desert. After his Iraq tour, Chris returned to Boston to work on the water again and acquired his 100GT USCG License.


Debbie Campbell

Debbie Campbell
Locke Elemenary, Chicago, IL
NOAA Teacher at Sea

Deborah Campbell has been selected by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to travel with crew and scientists aboard NOAA Ship Nancy Foster. Deborah has been teaching in the Chicago Public School system for thirty years. She teaches seventh grade at Locke Elementary School in Chicago. As a science teacher, Deborah has been involved with Chicago area museums as well as Illinois Universities. In 2010, she traveled with a group from Northern Illinois University to the Yucatan Peninsula to study the geography, hydrology, and culture of the Mayan people. Recently, she has been involved with the Museum of Science and Industry as part of ongoing teacher training which links museum exhibits and displays with activities that can be done in the classroom. The museum also sponsors an afterschool science club, "C.S.I." (Classroom Science Investigators). Deborah also co-sponsors the "Space Explorers Club', and a robotics club. She has received many educational grants for which she is very grateful. The grants fund materials and programs which would not be possible without generous sponsors. Deborah is married, and has three children. Her son is in the U.S. Air Force, and both of her daughters are teachers. In the summer, she volunteers for an adaptive sailing program in Chicago which provides sailing lessons for the disabled community.


Guy Davenport

Guy Davenport
NOAA Fisheries Service







Andrew David

Andrew David
NOAA Fisheries Service







J.D. Dubick

J.D. Dubick
NOAA National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science






Sarah Fangman

Sarah Fangman
Office of National Marine Sanctuaries
Southeast Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Region

Sarah is the Chief Scientist on this research effort, and as such is responsible for the project's overall success. Sarah is the Program Coordinator for the Southeast Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Region and works out of the Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary headquarters. Originally from Minneapolis, MN., Sarah moved to Vermont to complete her Bachelors of Science in Environmental Studies and Biology at Middlebury College. She completed her Master of Science in Marine Affairs at the University of Washington in Seattle, Wash. During the completion of her Masters, Sarah had an internship with NOAA and then was awarded a place in NOAA's Presidential Management Fellowship Program. She has worked with NOAA ever since. She is also a NOAA Advanced Working Diver and Divemaster, and has been a certified diver since college.


Chris Gardner

Chris Gardner
NOAA Fisheries Service







Kelly Gleason

Kelly Gleason
Maritime Heritage Coordinator
Papāhanaumokuakea Marine National Monument

Kelly Gleason is the maritime heritage coordinator for Papāhanaumokuakea Marine National Monument. Following an undergraduate degree at the University of Notre Dame, Kelly pursued a master's in Nautical Archaeology at St. Andrews University in Scotland and a Doctorate at East Carolina University in North Carolina. In 2004, she began working for the Office of National Marine Sanctuaries in Honolulu, Hawaii as part of the Pacific Islands Region and became the maritime archaeologist for the Papāhanaumokuakea Marine National Monument in the fall of 2007. In addition to her experience working on sites in the Main and Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, she has worked on shipwreck sites in Scotland, North Carolina, Northern California, the Great Lakes and the Caribbean. Kelly enjoys diving really deep, swimming really far and playing lacrosse in Kapiolani Park.


Noelle Hawthorne

Noelle Hawthorne
Savannah State Universtiy

Noelle is a Gray's Reef Intern working on the Fish Acoustic Tagging Project. Noelle is also working toward her Master of Science in Marine Sciences at Savannah State University. Her thesis involves identifying the environmental factors that are influencing acoustic signal transmission of the same type of transmitters used in the tagging project. Later she will work on analyzing the fish detection data recorded for the project. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Bucknell University in Lewisburg, PA in 2010. She hails from Oxford, CT but enjoys living in Savannah.


Kacey Johnson

Kacey Johnson
Student
College of Charleston

Kacey recently graduated (two days before boarding the NOAA Ship Nancy Foster!) with a B.S. in Geology at the College of Charleston. While at the College of Charleston, Dr. Leslie Sautter trained her in marine geology and seafloor mapping. Additionally, Kacey conducted research with Dr. Scott Harris on the sonar characterization of deep-sea coral habitats off the coast of South Carolina. This will be Kacey's fourth trip on the NOAA Ship R/V Nancy Foster and she can't wait to learn from the scientists and crew of this latest Gray's Reef Expedition.


Michelle Johnston

Dr. Michelle Johnston
Research Ecologist
Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary

Michelle is a Research Ecologist at the Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary where she manages the sanctuary's coral reef long-term monitoring project. She grew up in Marion, Ohio, and was inspired by the ocean ever since she was a kid! She completed her B.S. in Marine Biology at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, where she studied the behavioral interactions of clownfish and worked at a sea turtle hospital rehabbing sick and injured sea turtles. Michelle's academic studies continued at the University of South Carolina, where she completed her M.S. in the Environmental Health Sciences department in 2007 and her Ph.D. in 2010 studying the impact of pathogenic bacteria from wildlife sources in South Carolina's coastal waters. After graduate school, Michelle was a Knauss Marine Policy Fellow for the Office of National Marine Sanctuaries before moving down to Texas to work in the field. She is extremely passionate about endangered species conservation and is known as the "Turtle Girl." In her free time, you can find Michelle on her yoga mat, on a beach run with her dog Zoë, or outside doing anything that invokes a sense of adventure, such as surfing, scuba diving, hiking, and traveling.


Shannon McAteer

Shannon McAteer
Gray's Reef Team Ocean

Shannon McAteer is a retired Army Special Operations helicopter pilot who flew UH-1 Huey, AH-1 Cobra and UH/MH-60 Direct Action Penetrator aircraft during a 22 year career. He has earned B.S and M.S. Degrees in Aeronautical Science and is a Ph.D. candidate in Public Policy and Administration. He currently works at the Georgia Ports Authority as the Corporate Safety Manager. In his spare time he teaches technical and cave diving and is a member of Team Ocean. He is very excited about serving on this cruise.


Greg McFall

Greg McFall
Research Coordinator / Deputy Superintendent
Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary

Greg currently works as the Deputy Superintendent and Research Coordinator for Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary, where he coordinates scientific investigations into the ecology and oceanography of hard-bottom reefs typical of those found elsewhere in the South Atlantic Bight. He serves as the Line Office Diving Officer for the National Ocean Service.
Prior to coming to NOAA he worked for seven years with Dr. Joe Pawlik in the Chemical Ecology Laboratory of the University of North Carolina at Wilmington where he studied the chemical ecology of tropical sponges. Prior to that, he served as the Assistant Science Director for UNCW's National Undersea Research Center for a year after receiving a M.S. degree from UNCW's Marine Biology program. Before his graduate work, he obtained a B.S. degree in Biology from West Virginia University. Greg spent five years as a commercial diver before attending college and was trained as a US Navy Diver while serving in the military.


Steve Matthews

Steve Matthews
NOAA Fisheries Service







Debbie Meeks

Debbie Meeks
Financial & IT Coordinator / Webmaster
Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary

Debbie Meeks serves as Financial and IT Coordinator and Webmaster for Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary. She joined the staff in June 2005. As Financial Coordinator, she is responsible for providing operations support for all financial operations of the organization, along with procurement, and monitoring of sub-awards. As IT Coordinator, Debbie is responsible for the maintenance and security of the work stations, server and network infrastructure in the Gray's Reef offices. As the Gray's Reef Webmaster, she is responsible for the design, development and maintenance of the organization's website. Debbie's prior information technology experience locally includes 15 years with Union Camp as a Systems Analyst and Project Manager and two years with H.O. Systems as a software developer for wireless communications. She also has experience as an entrepreneur, having co-owned and managed The Monogram Place, a custom embroidery and monogram business/retail shop.
Debbie, who moved to Savannah in 1984, is a Georgia native. She holds a BBA in Finance and Banking/Accounting, a Microcomputer Specialist Degree, and has completed work towards a MS in Computer Science.
She is usually creating graphics and setting up mission sites for the Gray's Reef expeditions and workshops each year from "home port", but will be experiencing first hand what happens during the expeditions and will be updating the mission blogs from aboard the ship. She's excited to be part of the team and looks forward to gaining more valuable experience in the field.


Mike Mullenix

Mike Mullenix
Gray's Reef Team Ocean

Mike Mullenix earned B.S. in Chemistry in 1994 and a B.S. in Biology in 1995, both from Armstrong-Atlantic State University. He has since worked as an Analytical Chemist in the Savannah Ga. area where he lives with his wife and two young daughters. In 2008 he earned his Scientific Diver certification as member of Team Ocean, part of the NOAA volunteer diving program. Having participated in several research dives, he is now preparing for his second mission onboard the NOAA Ship Nancy Foster.


Todd Recicar

Captain Todd Recicar
Marine Operations Coordinator
Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary

Todd is the Vessel Captain for Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary. He started full time with Gray's Reef in June of 2007. After receiving a B.S. in Biology at Florida State University, he completed two Marine Education Internships; one at Newfound Harbor Marine Institute in Big Pine Key, Florida and the second at the University of Georgia's Marine Education Center and Aquarium in Savannah. After the completion of these internships, he worked as a research technician at the University of Georgia's Shellfish Research Laboratory in 1999. Prior to becoming a Gray's Reef employee he worked for 5 1/2 years as second mate on the 92 foot Research Vessel Savannah which is operated by the Skidaway Institute of Oceanography. Todd is a NOAA Working Diver and carries a 100GT USCG license.


Randy Rudd

Randy Rudd
Team Ocean Diver
Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary, 2011 Volunteer of the Year
National Marine Sanctuary Foundation, 2011 Volunteer of the Year

Randy joined the Gray's Reef Team Ocean Volunteer Scientific Diving Program in 2010. After completing his training and certification in record time, Randy became an important asset within his first two weeks as a volunteer diver. He has also taken the initiative to identify ways the program could operate more effectively. After observing many sidetracked missions were due to a short-handed crew, he spent his own money to earn a U.S. Coast Guard license to operate the Gray's Reef small boats.
Following Randy's selection as the 2011 Gray's Reef Volunteer of the Year, his name was submitted to The National Marine Sanctuary Foundation (NMSF), and was subsequently selected as the NMSF 2011 Volunteer of the Year. Randy received this award for his leadership and dedication. NMSF presented the award to Randy at it's ninth annual Leadership Awards Dinner on June 7, 2011 in Washington, D.C.
Randy has been a resident of Savannah, Georgia for 34 years. He retired from the Savannah-Chatham County School System after 26 years as a School Social Worker. His diving experiences began in the mid 1960's in Lauderdale-By-The-Sea, Fla. His official diving certification came in 2003, and he has pursued subsequent certifications. Randy is an avid underwater photographer and believes in documenting undersea life. Being retired gives Randy the chance to support NOAA's underwater research efforts.


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