Want to learn more about the four permanent crew members aboard S/V Ocean Watch? Visit the crew page.
David Rockefeller Jr., Co-founder and Board of Directors President, Sailors for the Sea
David Treadway, Co-founder and Board of Directors Vice-President, Sailors for the Sea
Dan Pingaro, CEO and Executive Director, Sailors for the Sea
Bryce Seidl, President and CEO, Pacific Science Center
Ellen Lettvin, Ph.D., VP, Science and Education, Pacific Science Center
Erik Pihl, Vice President for Development, Pacific Science Center
Mark Schrader, Captain, S/V Ocean Watch
Dan McConnell, Around the Americas Special Projects
Bios for members of the Planning Committee can be found below their respective organizations below. Captain Schrader’s bio can be found on the crew page.
Sailors for the Sea:
David Rockefeller Jr.
Co-founder and Board of Directors President
David Rockefeller, Jr., director and former chairman of Rockefeller & Co., Inc., is an active participant in the nonprofit arena, especially in the areas of environment, the arts, public education and philanthropy.
David is vice chair of the National Park Foundation and former national vice chair of the Alaska Conservation Foundation. He served as a member of the Pew Oceans Commission, which issued a comprehensive report on the health of U.S. marine waters in June 2003. David’s commitment to ensuring that our government and communities embrace and implement the recommendations of the Pew Commission – and his passion for sailing and the sea – fueled the formation of Sailors for the Sea.
David has raced and cruised the ocean waters for over forty years, from Labrador to Miami, San Diego to Alaska, Scotland and Sweden to Turkey, and Italy. As many as 200 fellow sailors have joined the extensive sailing excursions he has personally organized in the U.S. and abroad.
He co-owns and races, with his sailing partner Rick Burnes, the Danish IMX 45 Cybele on which he made his seventh Newport to Bermuda Race passage in June 2004. He also skippers an International One Design sloop out of Northeast Harbor, Maine, and regularly participates in IOD Worlds Competitions.
Co-founder and Board of Directors Vice-President
David Treadway, Ph.D., a founding member of Sailors for the Sea, is a nationally known family and couples therapist, and the author of Intimacy, Change, and other Therapeutic Mysteries and Dead Reckoning: A Therapist Confronts his own Grief. He has appeared on national media including “Good Morning America” and “Twenty/Twenty,” as well as hosting a show on family communication for public radio.
David has been an avid sailor his whole life and in the past 30 years has sailed his Luders 33 as far north as Newfoundland and Scotland, and as far south as Spain and the Caribbean. He’s crossed the Atlantic three times, including one solo voyage. David passionately believes that all of us who love the sea must unite in sounding the alarm about the threat to our oceans.
CEO and Executive Director
Daniel Pingaro is the CEO and Executive Director of Sailors for the Sea. He previously worked for the US Environmental Protection Agency in support of the West Coast Governor’s Ocean Health Action Plan. Dan also led the USEPA West Coast Estuaries Initiative. Previously a board member of the Marine Science Institute, Mr. Pingaro also founded CLEWGEAR, a foul weather gear company. He is an active racing sailor.
Chris Mancini has sailed all along the east coast of the United States, through the Gulf of Mexico and around the Eastern Caribbean and has worked as an environmental educator in the Hudson Valley, New York City and the greater Boston area. He received his masters in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning from Tufts University.
Pacific Science Center:
President and CEO
Bryce Seidl is the President and CEO of Pacific Science Center, a private, not-for-profit educational institution in Seattle.
Mr. Seidl holds a degree in ecology from University of California, Berkeley and MBA from University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. He spent 25 years with Simpson Companies of Seattle before joining Fisher Mills Inc. where he served as executive vice president, chief operating officer, director, president and chief executive officer. In addition to his private sector work, Mr. Seidl spent 10 years in elected office both as a city councilman and as mayor of Vancouver, Washington. His service was marked by major work in both economic development and in the arts and cultural development of the area.
Mr. Seidl has served on more than twenty boards serving a wide variety of community service, arts and educational interests.
Ellen Lettvin, Ph.D.
VP, Science and Education
Dr. Ellen Lettvin joined Pacific Science Center in late 2008 as Vice President for Science and Education. In her former role as Assistant Director of Education and Outreach and Senior Oceanographer at the UW Applied Physics Laboratory (APL), Ellen worked closely with Pacific Science Center on a variety of informal science education initiatives, such as Polar Science Weekend and our Carbon Monitoring project. At APL, Ellen was responsible for increasing the visibility of the lab, including in local and national K-12 educational communities and the regional entrepreneurial community. She initiated several innovative outreach efforts that have achieved a broad-reaching presence for APL. Ellen earned her Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering and Atmospheric, Oceanic, and Space Sciences from the University of Michigan, as well as an M.A. in Applied Statistics and B.S. in Geological Sciences.
Vice President for Development
Erik G. Pihl, Vice President for Development at Pacific Science Center leads all aspects of Pacific Science Center’s development and membership programs. He serves on the planning committee for the Around the Americas project.
Prior to joining Pacific Science Center, Erik held the positions of Director of Development at Seattle Art Museum and Director of External Affairs for the Santa Barbara Museum of Art.
The descendant of Åland tall ship captains, Erik has a particular interest in our relationship with the marine environment and opportunities to raise awareness about the fragile condition of the world’s oceans.
Erik is active in the Seattle community and serves on the Board’s of the Nordic Heritage Museum, University of Washington’s Scandinavian Studies Department, the Swedish Cultural Center, the Fremont Neighborhood Council and Fremont Historical Society.
Around the Americas Project Manager and Shipboard Educator
Zeta Strickland was the first Shipboard Educator on the Around the Americas voyage and joined Ocean Watch from Barrow, Alaska to South Carolina. At Pacific Science Center since 1999, she has been a supervisor with the Washington State LASER program, and while with the center’s Science On Wheels program she taught across Washington State and created inquiry-based investigations for the Science Center’s geology and astronomy programs. As the principal trainer for the Astro Adventures program, she has conducted initial-use trainings for K-12 teachers throughout Washington. Zeta is currently the Manager of the Discovery Corps and Science Interpretation Programs at Pacific Science Center. Zeta has a Bachelor’s degree in Geology from Lawrence University, and has a Teaching Certificate in secondary science for the State of Washington.
Sarah Bradshaw was the second Shipboard Educator on the Around the Americas voyage and joined Ocean Watch from Boston to Miami. Sarah has conducted research on marine protected areas through the School for Field Studies in the Turks and Caicos islands, tutored students in the Bahamas, developed curriculum on Pacific Northwest salmon and substitute taught in Washington public schools. Currently, she is a coordinator for Pacific Science Center’s Youth and Family Programs. Sarah graduated from University of Puget Sound and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Biology with a focus on marine biology and conservation. She also studied coral reef ecology abroad at James Cook University in Australia.
Roxanne was the third Shipboard Educator joining Ocean Watch, beginning with Punta del Este, Uruguay in December 2009. She is a Spanish speaker with experience working, living, and traveling in Latin America. She received her degree from Linfield College in both biology and studio art. She has conducted botanical research in Washington State and the Tropics, focusing on the ecological effects of human caused habitat destruction. Her experience as an educator includes ESL teaching, tour guiding, and teaching a self designed course focused on environmental awareness in Costa Rica. She is now in her second year working as part of Pacific Science Center’s Science On Wheels outreach education team.
Stephanie Anderson is the curriculum developer for the Around the Americas K-8 Teacher’s Guide and the Informal Educator’s Toolkit. She holds a B.S. in Biological Science from Warner Pacific College, a Masters of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) from Pacific University, and has over 14 years of experience in researching, developing, and creating secondary education programs and curriculum in topics including earth science, chemistry, physics, engineering, biology, and general science. She has taught teacher workshops for several expeditions of the JASON Project and has collaborated on projects including a National Science Foundation-funded program called Experiencing Chemistry. Stephanie has presented her work at meetings of the Portland Industrial Chemists Association, the National Science Teachers Association, and the Association of Science and Technology Centers. Most recently, she worked as a science educator and exhibit developer at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI).
Tom Ackerman, Ph.D.
Director, Joint Institute for the Study of the Atmosphere and the Ocean; Professor, Department of Atmospheric Sciences, University of Washington
Dr. Thomas Ackerman is Director of the Joint Institute for the Study of the Atmosphere and Ocean (JISAO) and Professor of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Washington. From 1999 through 2005, he served as the Chief Scientist of DOE’s Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Program and was a Battelle Fellow at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland, WA. The ARM Program is the largest ground-based atmospheric observing program in the world. He was Professor of Meteorology at the Pennsylvania State University from 1988 to 1999, as well as Associate Director of the Earth System Science Center. Dr. Ackerman is the recipient of the NASA Distinguished Public Service Medal and the Leo Szilard Award for Science in the Public Interest, awarded by the American Physical Society. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and a member of the American Geophysical Union. Dr. Ackerman has extensive and distinguished experience in climate research including both observational and modeling studies and has authored or co-authored nearly 200 peer-reviewed journal articles on a wide range of topics including studies of the climate influence of volcanic eruptions and asteroid collisions, the impact of clouds on earth climate, and the use of ground-based and satellite observations to study clouds and climate.
Bill Asher, Ph.D.
Principal Oceanographer, Applied Physics Laboratory, University of Washington
Dr. Asher’s research experience includes modeling the formation of secondary organic aerosols, studying the physics and chemistry of air-water transfer, determining the physicochemical properties of the marine surface microlayer, and measuring the concentration of trace organic compounds in natural aquatic systems.
His current research projects include developing thermodynamic models for predicting the formation of secondary organic aerosols, modeling the cycling and fate of volatile organic compounds in lakes and rivers, using infrared imaging to determine the relation of microscale wave breaking with air-water exchange processes, measuring the microwave emissivity of a foam-covered ocean surface, and characterizing spray droplets over the ocean surface at high wind speeds.
Lin Chambers, Ph.D.
Director, NASA S’COOL Program
Dr. Lin Chambers is the Director of the NASA Students’ Cloud Observations On-Line – a project which involves school children in real science. They provide ground truth measurements to assist in the validation of the CERES instrument. They can also compare the surface- and space-based observations to learn more about clouds and climate.
Dave Covert, Ph.D.
Research Professor, Joint Institute for the Study of the Atmosphere and the Ocean, University of Washington
Dr. David Covert is a member of the research faculty at the University of Washington’s Department of Atmospheric Sciences where he studies the physical, optical and chemical properties of aerosols and their effects on clouds and climate. This observational research involves the development and field implementation of instruments to measure these particles, which are found in the atmosphere as a result of geological, biological and anthropogenic sources.
Dr. Covert has collaborated with international teams of scientists to conduct field experiments focused on specific problems and geographical areas. He has used land stations, towers, mountain top observatories, research ships and aircraft for his research and. His recent field studies include a ship-based investigation in the northwest Pacific to examine aerosol in the plume from Asia, a study along the US Gulf of Mexico coast to evaluate relatively clean marine air, the dust plume from the Sahara Desert, and the urban-industrial plumes from the Houston/Galveston area, and studies under the extensive cloud field off the coast of Chile.
Dr. Covert has a bachelor’s degree in chemistry, a master’s in engineering and a doctoral degree in atmospheric chemistry via interdisciplinary studies between chemistry, atmospheric sciences and engineering.
Peter Dahl, Ph.D.
Principal Engineer, Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering, University of Washington
Dr. Dahl is a Principal Engineer in the Ocean Acoustics Department and an Associate Professor in the University of Washington’s Department of Mechanical Engineering. He conducts basic and applied research in underwater acoustics; his primary research area is the interaction of underwater sound with the sea surface and seabed boundaries and remote sensing with acoustics. He has conducted several international experiments in ocean acoustics, and was the U.S. chief scientist for the Asian Sea International Acoustics Experiment (ASIAEX) in the East China Sea.
Dr. Dahl is Fellow of the Acoustical Society of America (ASA), is past chair of the ASA’s Technical Committee on Underwater Acoustics, and currently is a member of the ASA’s Executive Council. In 2002 he was a guest professor at the University of Bergen Department of Physics. He has developed graduate courses in acoustics for the UW Mechanical Engineering Department, as well as a Freshman Discovery Seminar course entitled “What is Sound?” He has been with the Laboratory since 1989.
Mary Beth Decker, Ph.D.
Research Scientist, Yale University
Dr. Decker is a research scientist at Yale University, whose specialty is marine ecology and biological oceanography. Her research examines the effects of oceanographic processes and climatic conditions on the distribution, abundance and behavior of jellyfish and ctenophores. She uses a multi-scale, interdisciplinary approach to investigate these processes, by employing shipboard expeditions, laboratory experiments, modeling, and retrospective examinations of long-term data sets.
Andy Jessup, Ph.D.
Chair, AIRS Department; Principal Oceanographer and Affiliate Associate Professor, Civil and Mechanical Engineering, University of Washington
Dr. Jessup conducts basic research in the application of infrared (IR) remote sensing to study air-sea interaction. His research program combines field and laboratory experimentation with modeling based on observation. The primary instruments used are IR imagers and narrow field-of-view IR radiation thermometers (radiometers). The two main research topics currently being investigated are applications of infrared imagery to study wave breaking (large-scale and microscale) and the in situ measurements of sea surface temperature (SST) using radiometers for validation of satellite data.
Cara MariAnna, Ph.D.
Outreach and Diversity Specialist, Joint Institute for the Study of the Atmosphere and the Ocean, University of Washington
Dr. Cara MariAnna is the Outreach and Diversity Specialist at the Joint Institute for the Study of the Atmosphere and Ocean (JISAO). Cara joined JISAO in summer 2000 after completing a PhD. in American Studies from the University of New Mexico. Her first position, as a part-time office assistant, was intended to bridge a gap for a few months, but eight years later Cara is still with JISAO and now coordinates the Outreach & Diversity Program. She brings to her work a passion for helping people as well as a strong interest in diversity, social justice and in the collaborative team environment that is central to JISAO’s work culture.
Launched in September 2006, JISAO’s Outreach & Diversity Program is becoming a model for creative collaboration between NOAA and the UW. This year the program started several new and successful initiatives including an exchange program with Howard University and the NOAA Center for Atmospheric Sciences (NCAS) , theJISAO Lecture Series, and a variety of public education and K-12 events, as well as the institute’s continued participation in many NOAA and UW community activities. Because of these efforts JISAO’s presence in the local and national environmental science networks has increased. The NOAA Cooperative Institute program officer recognized the innovative techniques used to develop this program and awarded additional funding for the summer internship program next year.
Jenny Purcell, Ph.D.
Marine Scientist, Western Washington University
Dr. Purcell is a marine scientist at Western Washington University. She specializes in biological oceanography and zooplankton ecology. Her research interests include trophic importance, population dynamics, and behavior of gelatinous zooplankton, especially cnidarians (jellyfish) and ctenophores. She also investigates environmental effects on population size of jellyfish and jellyfish as predators and competitors of fish.
Michael Reynolds, Ph.D.
Dr. Reynolds was the first on-board scientist and sailed on Ocean Watch for five of the first eight months. He will re-join for the west coast in April 2010. He designed and built the climate-quality meteorological system and is responsible for all scientific data collection and reporting. Dr. Reynolds has been involved in geophysical research for over forty years. He has a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Southern Methodist University, Dallas, completed an Oceanography graduate fellowship from the University of Washington, Seattle, has an M.Sc. in Atmospheric Sciences from Melbourne University, Australia, and a Ph.D. in Atmospheric Sciences from the University of Washington. His specialty is the design and implementation of shipboard instrumentation for the study of air-sea interaction.
Ignatius Rigor, Ph.D.
Mathematician III, Applied Physics Laboratory, University of Washington
Ignatius Rigor is the Coordinator of the International Arctic Buoy Program (IABP). His primary interests are in the use of data from the buoys to study air, sea, and ice interaction. His recent work has focused on analyzing surface air temperature observations in the Arctic, studying sea ice processes in the Russian marginal seas, and backtracking the source areas of pollutants found in sea ice. He joined the professional staff in 1987 after having worked in the APL-UW Student Assistant Program as an undergraduate.
Jeff Simmen, Ph.D.
Director, Applied Physics Laboratory, University of Washington
Jeffrey Simmen is the seventh Director in APL-UW’s 60-year history. His career has been linked closely to the U.S. Navy. For ten years he led the Office of Naval Research Ocean Acoustics Program where he created a program that balanced experiment and theory, and included the disciplines of oceanography, signal processing, physics, engineering, and applied mathematics.
Dr. Simmen graduated from the California Institute of Technology with a degree in applied mathematics, earned an M.S. from Cornell University in theoretical and applied mechanics, and a Ph.D. from Caltech in applied mathematics. He became APL-UW Director in July 2003.
Senior Mathematician, Applied Physics Laboratory, University of Washington
Harry Stern is a Senior Mathematician at the Polar Science Center (Applied Physics Laboratory, University of Washington, Seattle) where he studies Arctic sea ice and climate using satellite data. He is an associate editor for the Journal of Geophysical Research – Oceans. He helped to launch the annual Polar Science Weekend at Seattle’s Pacific Science Center, which is now an annual event. Mr. Stern received a B.S. in Mathematics from Stanford University in 1980, and a M.S. in Applied Mathematics from the University of Washington in 1982. He has been with the Polar Science Center since 1987.
Dawn Curtis Hanley
As Project Director for Around the Americas, Dawn brings more than 20 years successful brand management, marketing and communications experience, with specific expertise in project management. She has worked in the fields of tourism, hospitality and media/publishing and has produced numerous award-winning special events and integrated marketing campaigns. Dawn was also Director of Marine Operations for Sail Boston 1992, the largest maritime and tourism event in the history of New England, attracting more than 225 vessels and over 7 million visitors to Boston.
Dan McConnell is a pioneer in the world of adventure sports promotion. He has worked with over 150 expeditions, polar treks, sled-dog marathons and sailing adventures in the past 25 years. He has been executive producer of several award-winning public television and cable documentaries and has won every major award from the public relations and marketing professions in the US. In 2006, he was given the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Public Relations Society of America. Most recently he has served as the senior public relations strategist for DDB, one of the world’s leading marketing communications companies. Since 1990, he’s taught hundreds of prospective PR professionals the value and integrity of public relations as an instructor in University of Washington’s Public Relations Certificate Program.
Born in Hungary, Lazlo Pal emigrated to the U.S. in 1962 and graduated from the University of Southern California Cinema Department with a B.A, and later earned an M.F.A. in Film Production at the University of British Columbia. He produced and directed many television commmercials and documentaries. He won an EMMY in 1993 for directing his feature film Journey to Spirit Island which aired on The Disney Channel. In 1997, Lazlo received another EMMY for directing the documentary,Sailing the World Alone, broadcast on PBS. In 1996 he received the Silver Circle Award for lifetime achievement from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.
Ray Jarris, MD
Port Call Coordinator
Bryan Reeves is the Port Call Coordinator for the Around the Americas expedition, and was aboard Ocean Watch from Dutch Harbor to Cambridge Bay to support the onboard science program. Bryan earned his B.S. in Engineering Science and Managerial Studies from Vanderbilt University. A dedicated expedition organizer and environmental advocate, Bryan has served as the Program Director for the Vanderbilt Outdoor Education Program, an Expedition Leader for the YMCA of Greater Seattle, and helped found the Vanderbilt Biodiesel Initiative.