28 May 2014

2014 AFS Marine Fish Section Officer Election

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Ballot, Marine Fisheries Section, 2014


For President:
Benjamin Walther is an Assistant Professor at the Marine Science Institute of the University of Texas at Austin. His research focuses on using the “natural tag” properties of carbonate hard parts, such as otoliths, in marine and

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Benjamin Walther

diadromous fishes to examine dynamics of migration, dispersal, and life history for those species with mobile phases. Current research involves species and habitats in the Gulf of Mexico, the North Atlantic, and the Great Barrier Reef off Australia with a focus on ontogenetic habitat shifts, population connectivity, trophic dynamics, and effects of floods and droughts on coastal ecosystems. He also serves as Technical Advisor to the Swordfish and Billfish Species Working Groups (U.S. Section) of the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT).

Ben received a B.S. in Biology and B.A. in Honors Liberal Arts (Plan II) at the University of Texas at Austin in 2000 and a Ph.D. in Biological Oceanography from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution/MIT Joint Program in 2007. He taught undergraduate oceanography at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy and spent two years as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Adelaide and the Australian National University before beginning his current position.

For President-elect:
Cynthia M. Jones has been a member of AFS and the MFS since the early 1980s and has served on various AFS committees through the years. As a fisheries scientist, she has worked in the private sector as a consultant, for

Photo of Cynthia Jones for MFS-AFS election

Cynthia M. Jones

government at NMFS, as a regulator while serving as an Associate Commissioner for the Virginia Marine Resource Commission, and for over 25 years as an educator at Old Dominion University. Since 1994, she has served on the SSC of the Mid-Atlantic Fisheries Management Council and also served as US representative to the Scientific Council of NAFO (1996-2000). She has been recognized twice with AFS best paper awards (2004, 1996), named Virginia Scientist of the Year (2003) and also Virginia Professor of the Year (2004). She served on the Ocean Studies Board of the National Research Council (2005-2007), where she assisted with NRC reviews of various fisheries issues. In 2009, she was elected a Fellow of AAAS. She was a Fulbright Senior Scholar in 1999 and received a Special Achievement Award from NMFS in 1981. She has done research on angler surveys, age and growth, fish ecology, otolith chemistry and the application of novel statistical techniques on marine estuarine and freshwater fish. She received her BA from Boston University and her PhD from the Graduate School of Oceanography at URI in 1984.

Paul Perra has been an active member of the American Fisheries Society for over 40 years. He served as President of the AFS Potomac Chapter and as Secretary/Treasurer and President

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Paul Perra

of the AFS Northeastern Division. Over the years he has served on a number of Potomac Chapter, Northeastern and Southern Division AFS Committees, and on Society-level Committees. He developed the first AFS policy on bycatch of marine fisheries, and has organized numerous AFS activities from national symposia events to local chapter crab feasts. He was program Co‑Chair for the AFS 2002 Annual meeting.

Paul received a BS (wildlife biology) from Central Missouri State University and two MS degrees (in marine science and environmental studies, respectively) from Southern Connecticut State University. He’s currently a Fishery Policy Analyst for the National Marine Fisheries Service in Gloucester, Massachusetts. Paul has previously served as a marine researcher for Battelle New England Laboratories, as the Program Director for Interstate Fisheries Management at the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, and as a Fisheries Biologist/Manager at the National Marine Fisheries Service’s Headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland. Most of his career has focused on the management of marine and anadromous species on the Atlantic Coast (striped bass, American Shad and river herrings, summer flounder, Atlantic sturgeon, and horseshoe crab), and the coordination of research information into the fisheries management process. Most recently he provides coordination for NMFS with the marine recreational fishing community as the NMFS Greater Atlantic Region Recreational Fisheries Coordinator.

For Secretary-Treasurer:
Debra Lambert received a B.S. in biology from the University of New Hampshire and an M.S. in Marine Science from the College of William and Mary/Virginia Institute of Marine Science. She works in the NMFS Office of Sustainable

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Debra Lambert

Fisheries in Silver Spring, Maryland as a fishery policy analyst. At NMFS, she develops national level guidance on implementing annual catch limits and accountability measures in federal fisheries with a goal of ending and preventing overfishing. Debra has served as the Secretary-Treasurer of the AFS Marine Fisheries Section since 2008.

For Representatives to the Section’s Executive Committee:
Northeastern Division:
Gail Wippelhauser received her PhD in zoology from the University of Maine, focusing on migratory fishes. She began working as a Scientist at the Department of Marine Resources in

Photo of Gail Wippelhauser for the MFS-AFS Election

Gail Wippelhauser

1996, initially focusing on American eels when the elver fishery was wild and crazy. Since 1999 she has worked on diadromous fish restoration throughout the state, collaborating with federal and state agencies, conservation groups, municipalities, hydropower companies and landowners to provide fish passage at barriers. Gail currently is using acoustic telemetry to find spawning habitat used by the native population of striped bass in the Kennebec Estuary and collaborating with researchers from the University of Maine and the University of New England to investigate sturgeon movements in the Gulf of Maine. She represents Maine on the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission’s American Eel, Atlantic Sturgeon, and Striped Bass Technical Committees.

Ian Bradbury is originally from Newfoundland, Canada. He completed his undergraduate and Master’s degrees at Memorial University and his PhD at Dalhousie University (2007). He

Photo of Ian Bradbury  for the MFS-AFS 2014 Election

Ian Bradbury

completed postdoctoral fellowships at the University of British Columbia and the University of Windsor, working on spatial connectivity and dispersal in marine fishes. He then returned to Newfoundland and is currently a research scientist with Fisheries and Oceans Canada, focusing on population genomics of marine and anadromous fishes and the application of this information to fisheries conservation and management.

Southern Division:
Susan Loweri-Barbieri is a Research Scientist at the Fish and Wildlife Research Institute in St. Petersburg, FL where her research focuses on fisheries ecology and natural

Photo of Susan Loweri-Barbieri for the 2014 MFS-AFS elections

Susan Loweri-Barbieri

anthropogenic factors affecting reproductive success in marine fishes. She received a BA degree in English and Biology from the University of Virginia in 1984 and her PhD in 1993 in Marine Science from the Virginia Institute of Marine Science/College of William and Mary. She became interested in understanding and properly managing natural populations after seeing the adverse impacts of poor fishing practices and inadequate ecosystem management measures in Africa. Sue has been a member of AFS since 1991. In 2009 she helped organize the Fourth Workshop on Gonadal Histology of Fishes (Cadiz, Spain), jointly sponsored by Fish Reproduction and Fisheries (FRESH; European Cooperation in Science and Technology [COST], Action FAO 601) and the AFS Marine Fisheries Section. She helped edit a collection of papers from this meeting, published in 2011 as “Emerging issues and methodological advances in fisheries reproductive biology” in the new AFS journal, Marine and Coastal Fisheries. She also helped organize a symposium at the Southern Division’s 2011 annual meeting.

Kyle Shertzer is a stock assessment biologist with the National Marine Fisheries Service in Beaufort, NC.  He received a Master’s degree and Ph.D. in biomathematics from North Carolina State University, specializing in theoretical and

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Kyle Shertzer

quantitative ecology. His research interests are in marine fishery management, population and community dynamics, and stock assessment methodology. Kyle has worked primarily on snappers and groupers, but also on other sea creatures such as lionfish, menhaden, sharks, eels, marine plankton, and marine mammals. He joined AFS in 1999 and later served three years as associate editor for the North American Journal of Fisheries Management. He says, “I am eager to continue serving within the Marine Fisheries Section by representing the Southern Division and by building on our section’s visibility in both research and education as they pertain to the biological, economic, and social aspects of marine fisheries.”

 Western Division:
Brenda Norcross is a Professor of Fisheries Oceanography in the School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences, University of Alaska Fairbanks where she has been for 25 years. Prior to Alaska, she was at the Virginia Institute of Marine

Photo of Brenda Norcross for the officer election of the Marine Fisheries Society AFS

Brenda Norcross

Science for 10 years, obtaining her PhD in Marine Science from The College of William and Mary in 1983, and then working there as an Assistant Professor. Norcross is passionate about fish and the effects of oceanographic impacts. Her research has taken her farther and farther north, from Virginia (where she studied croaker and flounder) to Kodiak (flatfishes) to Prince William Sound (herring), culminating in original research in the US’s northern-most oceans, the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas. Her current research in the Arctic is particularly exciting because it is establishing baseline information about fishes, their habitats and their life histories.  Norcross feels her 62 publications are not nearly enough to fully address all her research projects, but she has been rewarded by the publication history of the 37 outstanding MS and PhD students who have broadened her own perspective on research, education and communication.  Brenda was honored as a Harriman Scholar and by being named an Aldo Leopold Leadership Fellow in 2001. Since 1995 she has actively served on the Bering Sea-Aleutian Islands Groundfish Plan Team for the North Pacific Fisheries Management Council.

Brenda has been a member of AFS since 1980. She has attended numerous national and chapter meetings, organized and chaired sessions, judged student papers, and made oral presentations. She is a member of several sections: Marine Fisheries, Early Life History, Equal Opportunities, and Education. She served as a member of the AFS Excom/ Governing Board as Chair of the Equal Opportunities Section in 1991, the year the Section was created. She considers one of her most important AFS contributions to be originating the J. Francis Allen Scholarship for female PhD students. Brenda served as the Western Division Representative to the Marine Fisheries Section’s Executive Committee for the last two years and would be pleased to continue serving in that capacity.

Selina Heppell is a marine fisheries ecologist at Oregon State University, specializing in population dynamics and ecosystem-based fisheries management. She received her Master’s degree from North Carolina State and PhD from

Photo of Selina Heppell for the AFS Marine Fisheries Section officer election 2014

Selina Heppell

Duke University, then moved back home to the Pacific Northwest, where she uses her experience with species and management issues from both corners of the country. Selina’s long term work on sea turtle models and bycatch evaluation has evolved into more general fisheries management strategy evaluations, with an emphasis on how life history evolution affects population resilience and how uncertainty in biological parameters affects stock assessments. She has served on the Scientific and Statistical Committee of the Pacific Fisheries Management Council and on Oregon’s Science and Technical Committee for the Ocean Policy Advisory Committee. Her students conduct research on population dynamics and ecology of sea turtles, Pacific rockfish, and Alaskan groundfish. Selina has been an AFS member since 1993 and would like to increase the prominence of our section through incentives for student participation and more active membership, for example through the development of white papers or commentaries on key topics in marine fisheries such as offshore aquaculture, renewable energy, and marine spatial planning.

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