External Program Review of Ecosystem Sciences

March 22, 2016 (updated 11/21/2016)

External Program Review of Ecosystem Sciences
The Review is open to the public. To view and listen to the Review online via WebEx web conferencing services, internet access and a phone line is required. Supporting materials, agenda and speaker bios will continue to be updated. Please check back.

Location:
NOAA offices on Pier 38
1139 N. Nimitz Highway, suite #220
Honolulu, HI 96817

View map of location & parking area

Dates:
April 4-7, 2016

To join a meeting online (via WebEx):

  1. Click on a meeting date below (link will be activated on the meeting day):
  2. Click "Join"
  3. If prompted, enter event password: NOAA

To join by phone:

  1. Call: 1-866-764-5737
  2. Enter passcode: 8804118

For Technical Assistance:
Contact: chad.sugimoto@noaa.gov

The playback of UCF (Universal Communications Format) rich media files requires appropriate players. To view this type of rich media files in the meetings, click here to check whether you have the players installed on your computer to view this type of rich media files.

The following software may be used to view the materials on this page:

Due to space limitations at Pier 38, we are asking PIFSC staff to view the proceedings at the IRC via WebEx in Room 1564.

NOAA Fisheries constantly strives to improve the quality and timeliness of our science at each of the agency's six science centers and the headquarters Office of Science and Technology. A standardized six-year cycle of peer review and evaluation of our fundamental science programs at both the national and regional level help us to stay at the cutting edge of science and still meet the needs of our stakeholders. Each year of the cycle has a specific thematic focus. In 2015, the peer review focused on Protected Species Science conducted under mandate of the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), Endangered Species Act (ESA), Magnuson-Stevens Act (MSA) and comparable international agreements. In 2016, the focus will shift to examining and evaluating the ecosystem-related (including habitat, oceanographic, climate and ecological) science programs.

The Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center (PIFSC) provides data, information, analysis and technical advice to a wide assortment of clients and partners, including the Pacific Islands Regional Office (PIRO) and other offices of NOAA Fisheries, and the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council. Scientific information is produced and assembled by PIFSC and made available to other agencies of NOAA and the Federal government; state and territorial government agencies; university and other scientific research partners, both domestic and international; and the general public.

At the PIFSC's 2016 review, the independent panel will learn about ecosystem science information needs, priorities and research activities that are relevant to current programs. The review panel will provide input on ways to improve the quality of ecosystem science programs. The panel of experts will be:

The PIFSC Program Review will be open to the public and held at the NOAA offices on Pier 38, in Honolulu, Hawaiʻi.

Supporting Materials

Ecosystem-Based Fisheries Management

  • National Marine Fisheries Service
    2015. Ecosystem-Based Fisheries Management Policy of the National Marine Fisheries Service. September 9, 2015 discussion draft.
  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
    2015. NOAA's Response to: Exploration of Ecosystem Based Fisheries Management in the United States. A report to the NOAA Science Advisory Board July 2014.
  • NOAA Ecosystem-Based Fishery Management Working Group
    2014. Exploration of Ecosystem Based Fishery Management in the United States. A Report from the NOAA Science Advisory Board.
  • NOAA Science Advisory Board
    2014. NOAA Science Advisory Board Transmittal Letter to NOAA Ecosystem Sciences and Management Working Group. A review report on the "Exploration of Ecosystem-Based Fishery Management in the United States".

PIFSC Background Policy and Planning Documents

  • Jennifer Samson
    2016. Presenter Introductions. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 4.
  • Donovan S, Holdren JP
    2015. Multi-Agency Science and Technology Priorities for the FY 2017 Budget. Executive Office of the President of the United States Memorandum for the Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies M-15-16, July 9, 2015.
  • National Marine Fisheries Service
    2015. Fisheries Priorities and Annual Guidance for 2016. Silver Spring, MD: National Marine Fisheries Service.
  • Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center
    2015. PIFSC Priorities and Annual Planning Guidance for FY2016. Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center FY16 Annual Guidance Memorandum Sept. 4, 2015.
  • Pacific Islands Regional Office
    2015. Pacific Islands Regional Office Strategic Plan: 2016-2020. Honolulu, HI: NOAA Fisheries Pacific Islands Regional Office.
  • Subcommittee on Ocean Science and Technology
    2015. Interagency Ocean Science and Technology Priorities for FY 2017. Internal Federal document sent to Office of Science and Technology Policy on Feb. 24, 2015.
  • Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council
    2014. WPRFMC Five-year Research Priorities under the MSRA 2014-2019. Honolulu, HI: Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council.
  • National Ocean Council
    2013. National Ocean Policy Implementation Plan. Washington D.C: Executive Office of the President.
  • Pooley S
    2013. PIFSC Science Plan (2013). Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center Administrative Report H-13-01, 21p.

Supporting Materials for Ecosystem Sciences Division Presentations

Introduction

  • Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center
    2016. Ecosystem Sciences Division Organization Chart. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 4.

Climate Science

  • Office of Science and Technology
    2015. NOAA Fisheries Climate Science Strategy Highlights. Silver Spring, MD: National Marine Fisheries Service.
  • Link JS, Griffis R, Busch S (Editors)
    2015. NOAA Fisheries Climate Science Strategy. U.S. Dept. of Commerce, NOAA Technical Memorandum, NMFS-F/SPO-155, 70p.
  • Polovina J, Dreflak K, Baker J, Bloom S, Brook S, Chan V, Ellgen S, Golden D, Hospital J, Van Houtan K, Kolinski S, Lumsden B, Maison K, Mansker M, Oliver T, Spalding S, Woodworth-Jefcoats P
    2015. Pacific Islands Region Climate Science Strategy Regional Action Plan. Honolulu, HI: Jeffrey Polovina et al.

Coral Reef Science

  • Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center
    2016. Coral Reef Ecosystems Program Publications. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 6.
  • Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center
    2016. Selected Coral Reef Ecosystems Publications. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 6.
  • Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center
    2014. Reefs for the future: Resilience of coral reefs in the main Hawaiian Islands. NOAA Fisheries Pacific Islands Science Center, PIFSC Special Publication, SP-15-001, 2p.
  • Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center
    2011. Coral reef ecosystems of American Samoa: a 2002–2010 overview. NOAA Fisheries Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center, PIFSC Special Publication, SP-11-002, 48 p.
  • Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center
    2010. Coral reef ecosystems of the Mariana Archipelago: a 2003–2007 overview. NOAA Fisheries Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center, PIFSC Special Publication, SP-10-002, 48 p.

Pelagic Science

  • Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center
    2016. Ecosystems and Oceanography Program Publications. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 5.
  • Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center
    2016. Selected Pelagic Ecosystems Publications. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 5.

Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council Fishery Ecosystem Plans

  • Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council
    2009. Fishery Ecosystem Plan for the American Samoa Archipelago. Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council, 220p.
  • Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council
    2009. Fishery Ecosystem Plan for the Hawaii Archipelago. Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council, 228p.
  • Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council
    2009. Fishery Ecosystem Plan for the Mariana Archipelago. Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council, 251p.
  • Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council
    2009. Fishery Ecosystem Plan for Pacific Pelagic Fisheries of the Western Pacific Region. Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council, 251p.
  • Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council
    2009. Fishery Ecosystem Plan for the Pacific Remote Island Areas. Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council, 251p.

PIFSC Response, Chair Summary, and Reviewer Reports

Subsequent to the public review, each panelist produces an independent report outlining their individual areas of concern and areas for improvement, along with their personal recommendations for Center actions to overcome these obstacles. The Chair's report synthesizes only those concerns and recommendations shared by the entire panel. The Center's response, and the action items and timelines within it, is framed around the synthesized comments but each report is thoroughly read and its input absorbed for Division strategic planning and improvement. PIFSC response, chair's summary and panel member reports will be posted here as they become available.

Agenda and Presentations

Presentations made by PIFSC staff for the review will be posted below as they become available. Click on a topic or adjacent "+/-" to toggle the display of available topic-related presentations.

Click "++" or "––" to toggle display of all topic-related presentations below. –– ++

Day 1 - Monday April 4, 2016 at NOAA offices on Pier 38
Time Topic
8:30 AM
Welcome, Business Rules, and Introductions — Michael Seki
8:45 AM
Instructions to Panel and Terms of Reference (TOR) — Michael Seki
9:15 AM
NOAA Fisheries Program Reviews — Richard Merrick
9:30 AM
A National Perspective on Ecosystem-related Efforts — Jason Link
9:45 AM
Break
10:00 AM
Introduction to PIFSC and Ecosystem Sciences Division (ESD) — Michael Seki
10:30 AM
Pacific Islands Regional Office (PIRO) Management Needs — Michael Tosatto
11:00 AM
Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council (WPRFMC) Management Needs — Paul Dalzell
11:30 AM
Public Q&A
12:00 PM
Lunch
  Theme I: Data and Climate Science
1:00 PM
NMFS Climate Science Strategy — Jeffrey Polovina
Presentation:
  • Polovina J, et al.
    2016. NMFS Climate Science Strategy. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 4.
1:45 PM
Projecting Impacts and Vulnerability to Climate Change — Thomas Oliver
Presentation:
  • Oliver T
    2016. Monitoring Impacts of and Modeling Vulnerability to Climate Change. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 4.
2:15 PM
Break
2:30 PM
Data Management and Dissemination — Troy Kanemura
Presentation:
  • Kanemura T
    2016. How Data Management Supports Ecosystem Science. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 4.
3:00 PM
OceanWatch — Melanie Abecassis
Presentation:
  • Abecassis M
    2016. OceanWatch. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 4.
3:30 PM
Public Q&A
4:00 PM
Panel Review and Discussion (closed session)
5:00 PM Adjourn
Day 2 - Tuesday April 5, 2016 at NOAA offices on Pier 38
Time Topic
8:30 AM
Schedule for the Day (TOR Questions and Themes)
  Theme II: Pelagic Ecosystem Science
8:45 AM
Overview of Pelagic Ecosystem Research — Jeffrey Polovina
Presentation:
  • Polovina J
    2016. Ecosystems and Oceanography Program and Pelagic Ecosystems Research. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 5.
9:15 AM
Protected Species Pelagic Ecology — Jeffrey Polovina
Presentation:
  • Polovina J
    2016. Protected Species Pelagic Ecology. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 5.
10:00 AM
Break
10:15 AM
Climate Impacts on Pelagic Ecosystems — Phoebe Woodworth-Jefcoats
Presentation:
  • Woodworth-Jefcoats P
    2016. Climate Impacts on Pelagic Ecosystems. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 5.
10:45 AM
Oceanic Monitoring and Sampling — Phoebe Woodworth-Jefcoats
Presentation:
  • Woodworth-Jefcoats P
    2016. Oceanic Monitoring and Sampling. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 5.
11:15 AM
Public Q&A
11:45 AM
Lunch
12:45 PM
An Ecosystem Approach to Pelagic Fisheries — Jeffrey Polovina
Presentation:
  • Polovina J
    2016. Ecosystems Approach to the Pelagic Fisheries. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 5.
1:30 PM
Connectivity and Transport Modeling — Donald Kobayashi
Presentation:
  • Kobayashi D
    2016. Connectivity and Transport Modeling. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 5.
2:15 PM
Break
2:30 PM
PIRO Pelagic Management Needs — Jarad Makaiau
Presentation:
  • Kobayashi D
    2016. PIRO's Pelagic Ecosystem Management Needs. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 5.
3:00 PM
Pelagic Ecosystem Science Future Directions — Jeffrey Polovina
Presentation:
  • Polovina J
    2016. Pelagic Future Directions. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 5.
3:30 PM
Public Q&A
4:00 PM
Panel Review and Discussion (closed session)
5:00 PM Adjourn
Day 3 - Wednesday April 6, 2016 at NOAA offices on Pier 38
Time Topic
8:30 AM
Schedule for the Day (TOR Questions and Themes)
  Theme III: Coral Reef Ecosystem Science
8:45 AM
Overview of Coral Reef Ecosystem Research — Rusty Brainard
Presentation:
  • Brainard R
    2016. An Overview of PIFSC Coral Reef and Insular Ecosystem Science. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 6.
9:30 AM
Benthic Habitat Mapping — Annette DesRochers
Presentation:
  • DesRochers A
    2016. Benthic Habitat Mapping. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 6.
10:00 AM
Break
10:15 AM
Benthic Monitoring: Overview, Methods, and Results — Bernardo Vargas-Ángel
Presentation:
  • Vargas-Ángel B
    2016. Benthic Monitoring: Overview, Methods, and Results. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 6.
10:45 AM
Benthic Projects to Support and Inform Management — Brett Schumacher
Presentation:
  • Schumacher B
    2016. Benthic Projects to Support and Inform Management. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 6.
11:15 AM
Public Q&A
11:45 AM
Lunch
12:45 PM
Reef Fish Monitoring: Overview, Methods, and Results — Ivor Williams
Presentation:
  • Williams I
    2016. Reef Fish Surveys: Building a Resource that Supports Ecosystem-Science and Management. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 6.
1:15 PM
Using Ecosystem Monitoring Data for Ecosystem Science — Adel Heenan
Presentation:
  • Heenan A
    2016. Using Ecosystem Monitoring Data for Ecosystem Science. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 6.
1:45 PM
PIRO Coral Reef Management Needs — Gerry Davis
Presentation:
  • Davis G
    2016. PIRO Coral Reef Ecosystem Management Needs. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 6.
2:15 PM
Break
2:30 PM
Impacts of Warming and Ocean Acidification on Coral Reefs — Thomas Oliver
Presentation:
  • Oliver T
    2016. Impacts of Warming and Ocean Acidification on Coral Reefs. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 6.
3:15 PM
Coral Reef Science Future Directions — Rusty Brainard
Presentation:
  • Brainard R
    2016. Coral Reef Ecosystem Science: Future Directions. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 6.
3:45 PM
Public Q&A
4:00 PM
Panel Review and Discussion (closed session)
5:00 PM Adjourn
Day 4 - Thursday April 7, 2016 at NOAA offices on Pier 38
Time Topic
8:30 AM
Schedule for the Day (TOR Questions and Themes)
  Theme IV: Ecosystem Science Integration
8:45 AM
Ecosystem Models to Explore Insular Ecosystems — Mariska Weijeman
Presentation:
  • Weijeman M
    2016. Ecosystem Models to Explore Insular Ecosystems. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 7.
9:15 AM
Partnership for Ecosystem Management and Science — Ivor Williams
Presentation:
  • Williams I
    2016. Partnership for Ecosystem Management and Science. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 7.
9:45 AM
Ecosystem-Based Fisheries Management — Supin Wongbusarakum
Presentation:
  • Wongbusarakum S
    2016. Ecosystem-Based Fisheries Management (EBFM): Applying Ecosystem Sciences to Inform Management Decisions. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 7.
10:15 AM
Break
10:30 AM
West Hawaiʻi Integrated Ecosystem Assessment (IEA) — Jamison Gove
Presentation:
  • Gove J
    2016. West Hawaiʻi Integrated Ecosystem Assessment. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 7.
11:15 AM
Science to Support Endangered Species Act (ESA) Corals Listing — Rusty Brainard
Presentation:
  • Brainard R
    2016. Science to Support Listing & Recovery of ESA-Listed Corals. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 7.
11:45 AM
PIRO ESA Corals Management Needs — Lance Smith
Presentation:
  • Smith L
    2016. PIRO ESA Corals Management Needs. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 7.
12:15 PM
ESA Corals Projects — Dione Swanson
Presentation:
  • Swanson D
    2016. Projects in Support of ESA Corals. Presentation, PIFSC Program Review of Ecosystem Science. Honolulu, HI. April 7.
12:45 PM
Public Q&A
1:15 PM
Week in Review and Closing Remarks — Michael Seki
1:30 PM
Panel Review and Discussion (closed session)
5:00 PM Adjourn
Day 5 - Friday April 8, 2016 at NOAA Inouye Regional Center (IRC) on Ford Island
Time Topic
8:00 AM Panel Review and Discussion (closed session at IRC)
1:00 PM Final Panel Reports to PIFSC Directorate (closed session at IRC)
TBD Adjourn

Map of Location and Parking Area

 

NOAA offices on Pier 38 (at 1139 N. Nimitz Highway, suite #220, Honolulu, HI 96817). Parking area for program review attendees is highlighted in red on the map. Click here to reset map.

Speaker Bios

Melanie Abecassis

Melanie Abecassis serves as the lead for the Joint Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Research (JIMAR) Remote Sensing Project. Melanie holds a Ph.D. from the University of Toulouse, France, in Marine Ecology and has worked extensively on habitat modeling of pelagic species, using fish movement information from satellite tags, and environmental information from ocean remote sensing data and ocean circulation models. She also has experience with the Spatial Ecosystem and Populations Dynamics Model (SEAPODYM) ecosystem model to study predator and prey population dynamics for large pelagics (tuna, swordfish) and loggerhead turtles in the Pacific Ocean. Melanie has extensive experience working with large remote sensing datasets, statistical analyses and computer programming.

Rusty Brainard

Dr. Rusty Brainard has served NOAA for the past 35 years, including his role since 2000 as founding Chief of the PIFSC Coral Reef Ecosystem Program, an interdisciplinary, ecosystem-based research program that conducts integrated ecosystem observations, long-term monitoring and assessment, and applied research of coral reefs to support ecosystem-based management and conservation. His team monitors the distribution, abundance, diversity, and condition of fish, corals, other invertebrates, algae, and microbes in the context of their diverse benthic habitats, human pressures, and changing ocean conditions.

Dr. Brainard completed a B.S. in Marine Science from Texas A&M (1981), and M.S. in Oceanography (1986) and Ph.D. in Physical Oceanography (1994) from the Naval Postgraduate School. From 1981-2002, Rusty served as a NOAA Corps officer where he spent 8 years at sea, including 3 ½ years as Commanding Officer of R/V Townsend Cromwell. In 1982/83, he served as station chief of NOAA's South Pole Observatory monitoring atmospheric processes influencing climate. After that he has spent much of his career examining the role of oceanographic processes and climate variability (e.g. El Niño Southern Oscillation) in influencing marine ecosystems, initially along the U.S. west coast and then venturing central Pacific seamounts and then coral reefs of the central and western Pacific. From 2005-10, Rusty served as Co-Principal Investigator of the International Census of Marine Life, where his team developed tools to systematically monitor biodiversity. Rusty led an assessment of the status of and risk of extinction to 82 species of corals that informed NOAA's decision to list 20 coral species as threatened under the Endangered Species Act in 2014. From 2005 to present, Rusty has helped pioneer efforts to monitor the ecological impacts of ocean acidification. Since 2011, Rusty has served as NOAA's technical lead for an Ecosystem Approach to Fisheries Management in the Coral Triangle and Southeast Asia.

Rusty serves as affiliate graduate faculty at the University of Hawaiʻi and has served on graduate committees or mentor for students at University of California Santa Cruz, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Princeton, and Wageningen. Rusty has co-authored 98 scientific papers on various aspects of oceanography, marine ecosystems, fisheries, biodiversity, and climate change and ocean acidification.

Paul Dalzell

Paul Dalzell began his professional career in Papua New Guinea (PNG) in 1977, working on the population dynamics and stock assessment of anchovies and sprats used for tuna baitfish in tuna pole and line fisheries. He also worked on a variety of reef fish projects and the biology and population dynamics of surgeonfish while in PNG. He worked on small pelagic fish in the Philippines for a World Bank funded project with the International Center for Living Aquatic Resources Management (ICLARM) looking at the dynamics and stock assessments for these fisheries and later worked for the Secretariat of the Pacific Community in New Caledonia on a variety of fishery management and fisheries research projects for member countries, before moving to the Council and assuming responsibility for pelagic fisheries and the role of Senior Scientist.

Gerry Davis

Bio coming soon.

Annette DesRochers

Annette has worked for the Coral Reef Ecosystem Program since 2008. Her skills in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) initially brought her to the program, and her role later expanded (2010) to lead a team of technical specialists in GIS, data, and graphic design. She recently became acting lead for the Program's Ecospatial Information Team, providing support for the benthic habitat mapping component of the Program. Before joining NOAA-JIMAR, Annette worked as a GIS manager for a small municipality in New York, supporting GIS operations across all facets of the government. Annette recently earned her Master's degree in Business Administration from the University of Hawaiʻi Executive MBA program, and also has a B.Sc. in Marine Biology from Long Island University.

Jamison Gove

Jamison's research interests center on biological-physical interactions in marine ecosystems, with a specific focus in understanding the effects of physical drivers on coral reef community structure. Jamison joined PIFSC in 2001 as a marine debris specialist removing derelict fishing gear from coral reefs in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. Over the subsequent 13 years, Jamison worked as an oceanographer in the Coral Reef Ecosystem Program studying coral reef ecosystems throughout the Pacific while concurrently working towards his Masters in Physical Oceanography in 2005 and Ph.D. in Biological Oceanography in 2013 from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. Jamison is presently in the Ecosystems and Oceanography Program and lead of the West Hawaiʻi Integrated Ecosystem Assessment Program.

Adel Heenan

Adel has worked as a researcher in the Coral Reef Ecosystem Program fish team since 2011. Broadly, her interests fall under the topic of operationalizing an ecosystem approach to natural resource management. More specifically, she is interested in fish indicator development of functional groups and assemblage level impacts, integrative and collaborative monitoring and efficient, transparent reproducible reporting. Before joining NOAA-JIMAR, Adel worked as a marine ecologist supporting the Irish Sea Conservation Zone project, a stakeholder-led process to select sites for a national network of marine reserves in the United Kingdom. Prior to that she worked for the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Shark Specialist Group preparing Red List assessments for species of sharks, skates and rays in the Northeast Atlantic and West Africa. Adel has a Ph.D. in Fish Behavioral Ecology from the University of Edinburgh and a M.Sc. in Tropical Coastal Management from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne.

Evan Howell

In his role as Deputy Director of the Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center, Dr. Howell provides the oversight of all Science Center operations to support the NOAA Fisheries scientific mission in the Pacific Islands Region.

Dr. Howell began work at NOAA Fisheries in the Pacific Region in 1997, and through his career he has led and participated in scientific research coupling physical and biological processes to better understand critical habitat and possible climate effects on highly migratory and protected species in the central North Pacific ecosystem. As part of this research Dr. Howell authored or co-authored over 30 peer-reviewed scientific papers, participated in eleven NOAA or scientific partner research cruises, and served as a steering committee member for the National NMFS Fisheries and the Environment (FATE) and integrated Ecosystem Assessment (IEA) programs. Prior to becoming Deputy Director, Dr. Howell was the IT Chief for the Science Center, where he was responsible for supervision of the Information Technology Services group and oversight of all centralized technical and data operations to support mission activities in the Science Center.

A Hawaiʻi resident since 1996, Evan received his B.S. in Biology and Chemistry from Antioch University in Ohio, his M.S. in Marine and Atmospheric Chemistry from the University of Miami (RSMAS), and his Ph.D. in Marine Bioresource and Environmental Science from Hokkaido University (Graduate School of Fisheries Science in Hakodate).

Troy Kanemura

Troy Kanemura has a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from the University of Portland, a Master's Degree in Business Administration from Portland State University, and recently earned a Certificate in Data Science from the University of California, Irvine. He has worked with the Coral Reef Ecosystem Program (CREP) at the Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center (PIFSC) since 2009 and has been leading the data management team for the past six years. During that time, he has established a solid and scalable foundation for coral reef ecosystem data management with a long-term vision that emphasizes the PIFSC Oracle enterprise database as the system of record for all CREP data collections and has made significant progress in improving data quality and increasing data accessibility.

Donald Kobayashi

Donald Kobayashi has a B.S. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from the University of Arizona, a M.S. in Biological Oceanography from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, and a Ph.D. in Environmental Sciences from the University of Technology, Sydney. Don started working at PIFSC in 1987 when it was the Honolulu Laboratory of the Southwest Fisheries Science Center (SWFSC) and initially worked on plankton samples gathered in Pearl Harbor as part of an anchovy stock assessment project. Don continues to be interested in plankton, more recently focused on the role planktonic propagules play in population dynamics. Don's research interests generally center around biological oceanography and pelagic ecosystems. He uses modeling approaches as well as field and laboratory approaches to better understand questions about species distribution, abundance, and connectivity. Don is a member of the Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC) of the Western Pacific Regional Fisheries Management Council, and participates on the Scientific Steering Committee for the NMFS Fisheries and the Environment (FATE) Program. He also participates on a variety of outreach and education initiatives at PIFSC including participation on the PIFSC Young Scientist Opportunity Committee for summer internships.

Jared Makaiau

Bio coming soon.

Richard Merrick

Dr. Merrick began serving as Director of Scientific Programs and Chief Science Advisor in 2011. In this capacity, he leads NOAA Fisheries' efforts to provide the science needed to support sustainable fisheries and ecosystems and to continue the Nation's progress in ending overfishing, rebuilding fish populations, saving critical species, and preserving vital habitats. As the head of NOAA Fisheries' scientific operations, Dr. Merrick directs NOAA's six regional Fisheries Science Centers, including 30 laboratories. He joined NOAA Fisheries in 1985 as a marine mammal staff scientist at the Alaska Fisheries Science Center. In 1997, he transferred to the Northeast Fisheries Science Center, where he initially served as Branch Chief for Protected Species, and then as Chief of the Resource Evaluation and Assessment Division where he directed the Center's assessment, ecological, and social science research for fish and protected species. He has led various regional and national efforts to improve fishery and protected resources science, and has broad experience in dealing with a wide variety of controversial fishery and protected species issues. Dr. Merrick' holds a Ph.D. in Fisheries from the University of Washington; M.S. degrees in Biological Oceanography and in Marine Resource Management from Oregon State University; and an M.S. in City and Regional Planning and a B.S. from Clemson University.

Thomas Oliver

Thomas Oliver is a coral reef evolutionary ecologist, who focuses on the ecological, physiological and evolutionary responses of reef corals to environmental change. He has led the Oceans and Climate Change team at NOAA's Coral Reef Ecosystem Program since January of 2015. He supervises a diverse team of specialists to provide our best available understanding of the environmental forces acting on and ecological responses of U.S. Pacific coral reefs, with particular attention to warming and ocean acidification trends. He received his Ph.D. from Stanford in 2009, studying under Steve Palumbi, focusing on the physiology and genomics of thermally tolerant corals and algae from American Samoa. Now he applies a range of tools to address linkages between reef environments and reef ecosystems, including next-generation genomic techniques, large spatially gridded and in-situ environmental data, process-oriented carbonate system sampling, and oceanographic instrumentation.

Jeffrey Polovina

Jeffrey Polovina has a B.S. in Mathematics from Carnegie-Mellon University and a Ph.D. in Mathematical Statistics from U.C. Berkeley. He has worked for the past 35 years at NOAA conducting ecosystem research and during much of that time he served as the Chief of the Ecosystem and Oceanography Division (EOD) at the Pacific Island Fisheries Science Center. His research focuses on understanding the spatial and temporal dynamics of marine ecosystems with an emphasis on high tropic levels. He began his career studying the Hawaiian Islands coral reef ecosystem trophic web where he developed the ecosystem model approach ECOPATH. Over the past several decades, he and the researchers in EOD, have focused on physical biological linkages in marine ecosystems, especially regime shifts and climate impacts. A related area of interest is to use electronic tags and remotely-sensed oceanographic data to understand how large pelagic animals use oceanic habitats. His current research uses climate and ecosystem models to identify potential climate impacts on marine ecosystems.

While most of his work focuses on the central North Pacific, Dr. Polovina has had 2 Fulbright Senior Research awards for work in Kenya and the Galapagos. Dr. Polovina also has adjunct faculty appointments in the Oceanography and Marine Biology Departments at the University of Hawaiʻi and as a Senior Fellow at the Joint Institute of Marine and Atmospheric Research (JIMAR) in Hawaiʻi. In 2010 he received the Wooster Award from the North Pacific Marine Sciences Organization (PICES).

Brett Schumacher

Brett Schumacher has a B.S. in Biology with an emphasis in aquatic ecology from Colorado State University (1996) and a Ph.D. in Zoology with a concentration in marine biology from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa (2011). His dissertation compared feeding and habitat use patterns of the introduced snapper, Lutjanus kasmira, with those of native reef fishes. In 2003 he worked as a scientific consultant during the Northwest Hawaiian Islands Sanctuary designation process. From 2006 to 2013, Brett worked as a biologist for the State of Hawaiʻi with the Division of Aquatic Resources (DAR). At DAR he worked on shallow-water reef fish and habitat monitoring, mesophotic coral surveys, and management of the deepwater snapper fishery. He joined the NOAA CREP in 2013 as part of the benthic team, where he has focused on reef resilience projects, improving coral ID and other training materials, and benthic image analysis.

Michael Seki

In his role as Science and Research Director of the Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center, Dr. Seki provides the science direction and oversight of research activities that support stewardship of living marine resources in the vast expanse of the Pacific Islands Region.

Since joining NOAA Fisheries in 1980, Dr. Seki has conducted extensive fisheries, oceanographic, and ecosystem research on many marine species in the Pacific region. He has authored or co-authored over 40 scientific papers and has participated on over 20 domestic and international research surveys, serving as the Chief Scientist on 14 of them. Prior to becoming Director, Dr. Seki served as Deputy Director for the Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center; a position he had held since the Science Center was established in April 2003. In that position, he had the overarching responsibility and oversight of all Science Center operations. Dr. Seki is also the current team lead for NOAA Regional Collaboration efforts in the Pacific Islands Region.

Born and raised in Hawaiʻi, Dr. Seki received his B.S. in Biology from the University of Oregon (Eugene), his M.S. in Oceanography from the University of Hawaiʻi (Mānoa), and his Ph.D. in Marine Environment and Resources from Hokkaido University (Graduate School of Fisheries Science in Hakodate).

Lance Smith

Bio coming soon.

Dione Swanson

Dione Swanson has a B.A. in Biology from Hamline University (1992), a M.S. in Biology from California State University, Northridge (1995), and a Ph.D. in Marine Biology and Fisheries from University of Miami, Rosensteil School of Marine and Atmospheric Science (2011). Her dissertation established a quantitative foundation for coral population assessment and demonstrated the statistical framework and metrics required for monitoring coral reef ecosystems to meet the pressing needs of conservation of natural resources in Florida and throughout the Caribbean and Pacific. Broadly, her focus is applied population ecology. Specifically, she is interested in the development of potential sustainability metrics for coral populations analogous to fisheries metrics such as Spawning Potential Ratio (SPR), coral population dynamics (through development of an age-size structured spatial models), and the link between spatial patterns of coral habitat use and environmental drivers to address multiple threats to corals including climate change and ocean acidification.

Michael Tosatto

Michael Tosatto is the Regional Administrator of the Pacific Islands Region based in Honolulu. Previously he served as the Deputy Regional Administrator for the Pacific Islands Region, providing leadership to manage healthy marine ecosystems that provide for sustainability in marine fishery resources, recover endangered and threatened marine species, and enhance opportunities for commercial, recreational, and cultural marine fisheries activities. He served in the U.S. Coast Guard for more than 20 years, including many tours of duty in the Pacific region, where he routinely engaged regional domestic and international partners to carry out living marine resources management and maritime homeland security missions. He is a graduate of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, where he earned a B.S. in Electrical Engineering.

Bernardo Vargas-Ángel

Bernardo Vargas-Ángel has a B.Sc. in Biology/Marine Biology from Universidad del Valle, Colombia (1989) and a Ph.D. in Marine Biology and Fisheries from University of Miami, Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science (2001). He began his research career studying the ecology of coral reef communities in the eastern Pacific, with emphasis on the effects of natural and anthropogenic disturbances, namely El Niño warming and siltation stress. From 2001–2005 he worked as a post-doc and adjunct faculty at Nova Southeastern University, where he established a coral histopathology laboratory for the assessment of tissue and cellular reactions to sublethal environmental impacts and disease. In 2005 he joined NOAA PIFSC CREP as a coral disease specialist and since 2011 has served as the benthic ecology and monitoring team lead. His current research focusses on general aspects of coral reef community structural dynamics; coral reef resilience potential; and the effects of bleaching, land-based sources of pollution, and disease on coral reefs.

Mariska Weijerman

Mariska Weijerman has a M.Sc. in Tropical Ecology/Environmental Biology from the University of Amsterdam (1993), a M.Sc. in Tropical Coastal Management from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne (1994), and a Ph.D. in Ecosystem Modeling from the University of Wageningen (2015). She started her research career in microbiology, looking at the impacts of eutrophication on the plankton composition and harmful algal blooms in the Dutch lakes but quickly switched to the tropical rain forest in Guyana to look at the effects of logging on plant-animal interactions then moved on to the beaches of Surinam to work with three species of sea turtles. From 1997-2000, she worked on an integrated coastal fisheries development project (Desarrollo Integral de la Pesca Artisanal de Laguna de Perlas) for the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs in cooperation with the Nicaraguan Ministry of Fisheries and Economics. Back in the Netherlands, she looked at possible phase shifts in the North Sea based on a large set of environmental and biological long term data sets for the Netherlands Institute for Sea Research before moving to Hawaiʻi. In Hawaiʻi she first worked for the National Park Service as a marine and coastal ecologist and since 2009 as a coral ecology researcher for NOAA PIFSC CREP. Current research includes ecosystem understanding through the use of ecosystem models and management strategy evaluation using the complex Atlantis ecosystem model.

Ivor Williams

Ivor Williams has a B.Sc. in Mathematics and Philosophy (1986), a M.Sc. in Tropical Coastal Management (1994), and a Ph.D. in Marine Sciences (2000). Prior to moving into marine science, he worked for 6 years as a software developer. He has worked for the International Center for Living Aquatic Resources (ICLARM) in the British Virgin Islands, and as a post-doc in the Netherlands Institute for Sea Research, but the majority of his scientific career has been in Hawaiʻi, working as a quantitative ecologist for Hawaiʻi Division of Aquatic Resources between 2003-2009, and since 2009 as the fish ecology and monitoring team lead for NOAA PIFSC CREP. His research include causes of macroalgal domination on coral reefs; impacts of fishing and protection on coral reefs; and broad-scale ecology of coral reefs.

Supin Wongbusarakum

Supin Wongbusarakum joined the NOAA PIFSC Coral Reef Ecosystems Program in 2014 as a member of their senior management team and as Lead of the International Capacity Building team, which focuses on ecosystem-based fisheries management. She holds a Ph.D. in Human Geography from the University of Hawaiʻi and has more than 20 years of experience applying social scientific methodologies and developing practical tools to help improve natural resource management and conservation planning, and in particular tools for monitoring how the relationships among people, natural systems and management and conservation interventions affect human well-being. Supin has developed guidelines and trains staff and partners in the areas of socioeconomic monitoring, community-based climate vulnerability assessments, social resilience, and ecosystem approaches to fisheries management. She has supported many teams successfully conducting field research with coastal and island fishing communities in the Pacific.

Supin is also a research faculty with the University of Hawaiʻi Social Science Research Institute and a core team member of the working groups on evidence-based conservation and bio-cultural indicator development with the Science for Nature and People Partnership at the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis of the University of California, Santa Barbara. Prior to joining NOAA, she was the first Senior Social Scientist at the Worldwide Office of The Nature Conservancy, Associate Director of the Hazards, Climate and Environment Program at the University of Hawaiʻi's Social Science Research Institute, and Project Leader of the East-West Center's Pacific Islands Regional Integrated Science and Assessment Program. She has lived and worked on several continents on projects related to conserving natural environments and local cultures, socioeconomic monitoring and training, equitable community development, coastal hazard mitigation, and climate adaptation.

Phoebe Woodworth-Jefcoats

Phoebe's research interests center around climate impacts to North Pacific ecosystems and fisheries, with a particular interest in how ecosystem models can be used in determining these impacts. She draws on ecosystem models, earth system models, fishery-dependent data, and other empirical datasets in her work. Phoebe joined PIFSC's Ecosystems and Oceanography Division in 2009 and works as a research oceanographer on their pelagic team. Prior to joining PIFSC, she served three years in NOAA's Commissioned Officer Corps. Phoebe holds a B.S. in Meteorology from the University of Oklahoma and a M.S. in Meteorology and Physical Oceanography from the University of Miami. She is currently a Ph.D. candidate in the marine biology graduate program at the University of Hawaiʻi.