SCAS OFFICERS AND BOARD OF DIRECTORS

David Ginsburg , , , President

I am interested in the organization and dynamics of natural communities. My studies have incorporated multiple levels of biological analyses, from the whole organism to the level of individual genes, and bridge the fields of cell biology, physiology, chemistry, ecology, as well as environmental management and policy. Some of my recent projects have focused on the tracking of microbial contaminants and pathogens in coastal waters using real-time molecular techniques and the conservation and management of marine protected areas in Micronesia.

Lisa Collins , , , Vice President

I am a Lecturer and the Director of Undergraduate Studies for the Environmental Studies Program at USC. My academic background is in geology with a focus on biogeochemical oceanography of the Southern California Bight. I am interested in the cycling of carbon between the oceans, atmosphere and land and in particular how anthropogenic perturbations are impacting the cycle. My previous work has focused on time series measurements of particle fluxes throughout the water column, measuring the temporal changes in fluxes of carbon, silica, and detrital material. Laboratory experiments simulate ocean conditions as particle remineralization is observed under varying environmental conditions including warmer temperatures and lower oxygen concentrations. This work allows me to make prediction of how the ocean-atmosphere cycling of carbon may change as we experience global warming.

In my current position, my focus is on undergraduate teaching in Environmental Studies with a strong emphasis on experiential learning. I teach several courses a year which focus on water and soil sustainability, climate change, marine and coastal policy, and the natural history of Southern California. I have two field based courses including a course which spend two weeks each spring in Southern Belize where we investigate the role of the environment in the collapse of the Maya Civilization.

Edith Read , , , Recording Secretary

Edith Read received a PhD in Biological Sciences from the University of California at Irvine in 1989, and a M.A. in Biological Sciences from California State University at Fullerton in 1983.  Her doctoral thesis focused on seed dormancy and pollination ecology of desert annuals.  For the past 20 years she has monitored streams in the eastern Sierra Nevada affected by diversion for hydroelectric power. In the course of this work she has assisted Southern California Edison and the US Forest Service with improving the stream monitoring program and elucidating complexities of stream ecosystems. In southern California, she currently manages and monitors the 51-acre constructed Ballona Freshwater Wetlands, and manages a restored 18-acre coastal bluff scrub preserve adjacent to the Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve. She formed her own company in 2007 to employ her own staff specially trained to remove invasive vegetation from native habitats, and to manage native habitats in highly urbanized watersheds. In addition to management of protected areas, Dr. Read routinely consults on a wide range of other projects, ranging from rare plant surveys to habitat restoration plans that must comply with Federal, State, and local regulatory requirements. 

Amber Brown , , , Treasurer

As the Director of Watershed Programs for The Bay Foundation, Karina Johnston develops, manages, and implements federal, state, and non-profit grants to implement the Bay Restoration Plan, which strives to clean up waterways and create healthy habitats in the Los Angeles region. She is currently managing multiple projects to restore and monitor the Bay’s coastal habitats, including wetlands, dunes, beaches, and streams. She also developed and oversees the Center for Santa Monica Bay Studies’ multi-university internship program, leads research projects, and teaches at Loyola Marymount University.

As the leader of the scientific assessment program for the Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve and coordinator of regional wetland monitoring efforts, Karina has extensive experience developing, implementing, and directing scientific research and long-term monitoring programs. She earned her Masters of Applied Science in Ecology at James Cook University in Townsville, Australia, and her Bachelors of Science in Aquatic Biology with a minor in Geology from UCSB. Karina is also a Board Certified Environmental Scientist, with a Biology specialty (American Academy of Environmental Scientists).

Contact: amberb@usc.edu

Kristy Forsgren , , , Corresponding Secretary

Assistant Professor
California State University, Fullerton

My research focuses on describing the reproductive physiology of California fishes. My lab is particularly interested in rare, deep-sea, and internally fertilizing fishes. We are currently studying oarfish reproductive biology and the relationship between the testes and intromittent organs of perches and California grunion. I am also using proteomic tools as an approach to further understand endocrine regulation of early gonadal development in teleost fishes.

Dan Pondella , , , Bulletin Editor

Dan Pondella is the Director of the Vantuna Research Group, an Associate Professor of Biology at Occidental College and the Director of the Southern California Marine Institute. He is trained as an Ichthyologist and has been researching and monitoring the nearshore rocky reefs of the Southern California Bight since 1985, his primary research focus. A native of Los Angeles he received his undergraduate and Masters degrees from Occidental College and a doctorate from UCLA. He research focuses on large scale studies of rocky reefs in California as well as the restoration of these valuable nearshore habitats. Dan has been a member of the SCAS Board of Directors since 1998, served as SCAS President and is the current editor of the Bulletin of the Southern California Academy of Sciences with his long-time collaborator Larry Allen.

Larry G. Allen , , , Bulletin Editor

Chair and Professor of Biology
Department of Biology
California State University, Northridge

I have extensive experience working on the community ecology of California coastal marine fishes particularly those that occur in the bays, estuaries and harbors of Southern California. In addition, recent efforts have dealt with fish assemblages in kelp bed and rock reefs in Southern California. Past research has also included investigations into biogeography of bay/estuarine and coastal marine fishes. My experience into the field of systematics has centered on the development and classification of clingfishes (Gobiesociformes) and wreckfishes (Polyprionidae). Currently, my students and I are investigating life history, ecology, population genetics, and recruitment mechanisms of several important commercial species of fishes including giant sea bass, soupfin sharks, white seabass, California halibut, kelp bass, barred sand bass, and spotted sand bass.

Brad R. Blood , , , Newsletter Editor and Past President

David G. Mengebier is senior vice president and senior policy adviser for CMS Energy and Consumers Energy. He was named to this position in July 2017.

Mengebier previously served as senior vice president of governmental, regulatory and public affairs. He developed strategies to deliver favorable regulatory outcomes, including the National Energy Policy Act of 1992, the Nuclear Waste Policy Act, Michigan’s 2008 Energy Law and a Michigan-first energy policy in 2016. Mengebier also helped boost the company’s brand awareness, increasing customer satisfaction performance from fourth to first quartile among Midwest utility peers.

His previous roles include vice president of governmental and international affairs (1999 to 2001), executive director of federal governmental affairs (1995 to 1999) and director of federal governmental affairs (1991 to 1995). Mengebier also previously served for eight years as chief compliance officer.

Before joining CMS Energy, Mengebier was a staff member in the U.S. House of Representatives and legislative counsel to a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit organization. Mengebier earned a bachelor’s degree in economics, public administration and political science from Michigan State University in 1981 and a law degree from Thomas M. Cooley Law School in Lansing, Mich., in 1984. He earned an MBA from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan in 2006.

Mengebier is a board member of the Michigan Chamber of Commerce, Keystone Energy, Great Lakes Water Quality Board, Little Traverse Conservancy, the Michigan Achieves Leadership Council and TraverseCONNECT. He is also a member of the Washington, D.C., Bar Association.

Shelly Moore , , , Board Member and Webmaster

Shelly Moore is an Information Research Scientist in the Information Management and Analysis Department who specializes in transforming environmental data into usable information through her expertise in data management, data analysis, and data visualization and her background in biology. She received her B.S. in marine biology in 1991 and M.S. in biology in 1998 from California State University, Long Beach. Moore joined SCCWRP in July 1994. Her present efforts focus on developing data management systems and web-based/desktop data analysis and visualization applications to assist SCCWRP’s member agencies, environmental managers and scientists in making informed decisions to better manage aquatic resources. She is also focusing on developing new tools in Virtual/Augmented Reality to bring scientific information to all by putting them in the environment they normally may not be able to visit.

Contact: shellym@sccwrp.org

Gordon Hendler , , , Board Member 2014-2017

Gordon Hendler, Ph.D., is Curator of Echinoderms at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, adjunct professor at the University of Southern California, and Research Associate at the Smithsonian Institution. He has served as a member of the SCAS Board since 20008, and on the Council of the Biological Society of Washington. After completing postdoctoral fellowships at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama, Gordon was Director of the Smithsonian’s Galeta Marine Laboratory and Supervisor at the Smithsonian Oceanographic Sorting Center. He has done field work from the Aleutian Islands to the Antarctic, in the tropics, and on both coasts of the United States. Gordon’s research is primarily on the biology of brittle stars, including their morphology, ecology, systematics, behavior, reproduction and development, and his book on “Sea Stars, Sea Urchins and Allies: Echinoderms of Florida and the Caribbean,” was published by Smithsonian Institution Press.

Shana Goffredi , , , Board Member 2014-2017

Occidental College
Associate Professor, Biology
Advisory Committee, Biochemistry

Dr. Goffredi‘s research interests concern beneficial symbiotic partnerships between bacteria and invertebrates. Most of her career has so far been devoted to the study of beneficial associations between bacteria and deep-sea invertebrates,including marine polychaetes (Riftia and Osedax), clams (Calyptogena), crabs (the yeti crab Kiwa), and leeches. In the past few years, she has begun to explore tropical insects which provide many promising new avenues for research with regard to bacterial involvement in their nutritional ecology.

Dr. Goffredi’s funding has come from the National Science Foundation, and she has published in journals such as Frontiers in Microbiology, Environmental Microbiology and Science. Her B.S. is in Biology/Marine Science from the Univ. of San Diego and her Ph.D. is in Ecology, Evolution, and Marine Biology from UC Santa Barbara.

Ted Stankowich , , , Board Member 2018-2021

Dr. Stankowich received his B.A. in Biological Sciences from Cornell University and his Ph.D. in Animal Behavior from the University of Califoria Davis, and he was the Darwin Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He also spent time as a Lecturer at UMass and a Teaching Fellow at Harvard University. Dr. Stankowich has a deep commitment to teaching and teaches a variety of courses including Evolution, Mammalogy, Ecology, and Behavioral Ecology. His research interestes include the evolution, ecology, and behavior of predator-prey interactions, and he has worked on a broad range of taxa including carnivores, ungulates, rodents, and spiders. Dr. Stankowich's research involves both experimental studies (lab and field studies) and analytical techniques (phylogenetic comparative analysis, meta-analysis).


Contact: theodore.stankowich@csulb.edu

Gloria Takahashi , , , Board Member 2014-2017

Gloria Takahashi (M.A. in Biology) has served on the SCAS Board of Directors since 1978. Recently retired after 47 years of science teaching at La Habra High School in the Fullerton Joint Union High School District, she continues as an adjunct faculty member in Biology at Cerritos College. She authored the proposal in 1979 that began the SCAS High School Research Training Program in 1980, funded by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), and since has chaired the High School Program (Junior Academy) committee to continually develop and manage this academic year informal science education program to engage more high school students in science research with scientists. From 1990-1996 her Junior Academy committee initiated and worked actively to increase the number of students in research within the Southern California Consortium NSF funded Young Scholars Program with a focus on reaching out to the demographically diverse southern California population of young people.

She accompanies the Junior Academy student-delegates to the national AJAS meetings held with the AAAS Annual Meetings. She was the national AJAS Director 1991-2000. She is currently serving on the AAAS Section Y Council and SCAS representative to the meetings of the National Association of Academies of Science. She has served on the AAAS Project 2061 National Science Council and is a Fellow of the SCAS and AAAS.

Kimo Morris , , , Board Member 2018-2021

Assistant Professor
Department of Biological Sciences
California State University, Long Beach

I earned my BA in Biology from Pomona College, my MS in Biology from San Diego State University under Susan L. Williams and my PhD in Ecology and Evolution from Stony Brook University under Jeffrey S. Levinton. I have since held a faculty appointment in the Department of Biological Sciences at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB). Research in my lab focuses broadly on: (1) the statistical analysis of multivariate patterns in marine community structure; and (2) the use of manipulative experimentation to test hypotheses to explain those patterns, in particular, investigating mechanistic links between local environmental conditions and individual physiology, behavior, and demography (i.e., survival, growth, and reproduction). I am currently funded by the National Science Foundation and the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration. Outside the University, I serve on the External Advisory Committee for Research of the Cabrillo Marine Aquarium and as a Monitoring Program Leader in the Multi-Agency Rocky Intertidal Network (MARINe).

Ann Bull , , , Board Member 2015-2018

Ann Scarborough Bull, Ph.D.
Chief, Environmental Sciences
Pacific Region Bureau of Ocean Energy Management

A Southern California native, Ann was brought up on the ocean and worked as a deck-hand for her father during commercial fishing and charter boat operations. She received her Bachelor’s degree in both Biochemistry and Biology from University of California San Diego and went on to obtain a Master’s and PhD from Louisiana State University with her graduate fieldwork being completed at the Marine Biological Laboratory Woods Hole. Her post-doctoral work at Johns Hopkins University centered on the health of fish populations and their responses to anthropogenic changes of their environments. A career employee for the Department of the Interior in environmental research and assessment, she worked over a decade for the former Minerals Management Service, now, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM), in the Gulf of Mexico Region and has been with BOEM Pacific Region since 2001. Dr. Bull’s research interests center on the ecological influence, on both a local and regional scale, of offshore oil and gas platforms, renewable energy installations and artificial reefs. She is currently the Chief of Environmental Sciences, Pacific Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Region where she oversees a multi-million dollar studies program on the OCS of California, Oregon, Washington and Hawaii.

Mia Adreani , , , Board Member 2016-2019

I am an evolutionary ecologist with broad interests in the evolution of mating systems and behavioral ecology. I have worked in many different systems including coral reefs, kelp forests and freshwater ponds and streams.My primary research is focused on investigating mating behavior, alternative mating tactics and fertilization dynamics in marine fishes. I employ a combination of behavioral observations, field manipulation experiments and laboratory techniques to estimate fecundity, paternity, and the contexts under which different mating tactics are deployed. Currently, I am working on a project investigating the effectiveness of a large-scale artificial reef off of southern California with respect to reproductive output, growth rate and productivity of several kelp-associated fishes.

Juli Passarelli , , , Board Member 2016-2019 and Past President

Dr. Julianne Kalman Passarelli is the Exhibits and Collections Curator at Cabrillo Marine Aquarium in San Pedro and is currently the President of Board of Directors for the Southern California Academy of Sciences. Dr. Passarelli is a biologist who specializes in the ecology and parasitology of marine organisms in the Southern California Bight, environmental endocrinology and physiology, and environmental assessment. She received a B.S. degree in Marine Biology from California State University, Long Beach (CSULB), a M.S. degree in Biology from CSULB, and a Ph.D. degree in Biology from UCLA. Dr. Passarelli returned to CSULB as a Post-Doctoral Researcher working in the Environmental Endocrinology Laboratory. She was a laboratory research assistant at the Southern California Coastal Water Research Project (SCCWRP) and has also worked with the Ocean Monitoring Program at the Orange County Sanitation District. Her present research focuses on assessing natural and anthropogenic changes in marine organisms using endocrine systems and parasitism as bioindicators of stress. In addition, she is working to assess the abundance and diversity of external parasites on local fishes and invertebrates.

Danny Tang , , , Board Member 2016-2019

Danny is a marine scientist with the Ocean Monitoring Section of the Orange County Sanitation District (OCSD) in Fountain Valley, California, U.S.A. He leads a fantastic team of biologists and environmental scientists in monitoring the sediment quality and animal communities (benthic invertebrates & demersal fishes) adjacent to and farther afield from the OCSD's 5-mile ocean outfall. Prior to joining the OCSD in 2013, Danny was engrossed in systematic and ecological studies of Copepoda. He has described new copepod taxa from fish and invertebrate hosts collected from the U.S.A., Australia and Japan. He also undertook taxonomic and environmental projects on the aquatic invertebrate fauna inhabiting springs, cave streams and other groundwater habitats in Western Australia.

Ralph Appy , , , Past President

Dr. Appy is the retired Director of the Environmental Management at the Port of Los Angeles. At the Port he managed regulatory compliance, implemented management plans for air, water and sediments, soil and groundwater, biological mitigation/wetland restoration, and implemented an environmental management system. He holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Marine Biology/Parasitology from California State University at Long Beach and a Ph.D. in Zoology from the University of New Brunswick, Canada on the use of parasites to identify fish stocks, and conducted postdoctoral research at the University of Guelph in Canada on nematode systematics. Dr. Appy is presently conducting research at the Cabrillo Marine Aquarium on parasites of marine animals with an emphasis on the systematics and ecology of tapeworms of sharks and rays.

Jonathan Baskin , , , Past President

Dennis D. Dobbs is vice president of enterprise project management and environmental services for Consumers Energy, the principal subsidiary of CMS Energy.

Dobbs is responsible for project leadership, management and administration for complex and mission-critical capital investments. Dobbs also leads the development of renewable and conventional generating units. He also oversees environmental compliance and strategy, and administrative support and strategic planning for the generating plants.

Prior to his current position, Dobbs served as vice president of enterprise project management, engineering and services. He previously served as site business manager of the Karn/Weadock Generating Complex in Essexville, Mich., from 2008 to 2011.

Dobbs joined Consumers Energy as a senior engineer in 1999 and has held a series of increasingly responsible positions at the company, including Karn/Weadock site production manager, and Weadock Plant business manager, site economic-based reliability manager and economic-based reliability lead.

Dobbs began his utility career at Illinois Power in 1991 after serving in the U.S. Army during Operation Desert Storm.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology a master’s of business administration degree from Illinois State University.

John H. Dorsey , , , Past President

John Dorsey received his B.S. in Marine Biology (1972) and M.S. in Biology (1975) from California State University, Long Beach, then traveled to Australia where he received his doctorate from the University of Melbourne in Zoology (1982). Presently he is a Professor at Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, in the Department of Civil Engineering & Environmental Science where he teaches courses in environmental, atmospheric and marine sciences. Prior to LMU, he worked as a marine biologist for the City of Los Angeles (1983-2002), focusing on marine monitoring in Santa Monica Bay and storm water management. John sits on numerous local and state technical committees dealing with water quality issues and policy, and is past-president of the Southern California Academy of Science where he remains an active member of their Board of Directors. He conducts research on the dynamics of fecal indicator bacteria in coastal waters and wetlands. John’s passion for good water quality is natural -- he is an avid surfer, so most days he can be found at dawn surfing at El Porto near his home and LMU’s campus.

John Roberts , , , Past President

John Roberts, Ph.D., is Emeritus Professor of Biology and Environmental Science at California State University, Dominguez Hills. He attended the University of California at Santa Barbara, earning a B.A. in Cellular Biology in 1968 and a Ph.D. in Biology in 1974. His research interests are evolutionary genetics, molecular evolution, and developmental biology, emphasizing marine invertebrates, reptiles, and bacteria.