Who is on the Council, and what seats do they fill?
The OAH Council is made up of members from multiple agencies and organizations. These members represent a variety of interests.
DR. JOHN (JACK) BARTH
Jack Barth is the Executive Director of Oregon State University’s Marine Studies Initiative. He is also Professor of Oceanography in Oregon State University’s College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences (CEOAS). Jack received a Ph.D in Oceanography in 1987 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Joint Program in Oceanography. His research seeks to understand the complex spatial structure and time variation of coastal ocean circulation and water properties, and how these influence coastal marine ecosystems. Jack is particularly interested in marine low-oxygen zones and has led a number of research, technology development, and ocean observing system projects off Oregon and around the world. He presently serves on the Oregon Ocean Policy (STAC) Advisory Council’s (OPAC) Scientific and Technical Advisory Committee.
DR. CAREN BRABY
COUNCIL CO-CHAIR Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife
Caren Braby provides strategic leadership on all things ‘ocean’ within the state of Oregon and across the West Coast, as the Manager of the Marine Resources Program for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife. Her work is grounded in both fishery and ecosystem issues, and is directed at facilitating and inspiring stewardship of ocean resources from the estuaries to the high seas. Caren and her staff build partnerships with industry, academic researchers, tribal governments, agencies, stakeholders, and elected officials to collaboratively define, and achieve, both economic and ecosystem resilience. In particular, changing oceans and ocean acidification have become focal points for Caren’s work over the past 5 years. Caren received a Ph.D. in Biological Sciences from Stanford University in 2004.
Oregon Department of Agriculture
Alex Manderson is the Shellfish Specialist for the Oregon Department of Agriculture. He is responsible for implementing the internationally recognized National Shellfish Sanitation Program (NSSP) within Oregon. This program ensures that molluscan shellfish going into commerce are safe and wholesome. Alex also oversees Oregon's marine biotoxin monitoring program for both molluscan shellfish and Dungeness crab, shellfish and food processor licensing and inspection, and handling mariculture leasing applications on State owned tidelands within Oregon. Alex graduated from Massey University in New Zealand and has worked for ODA for the past 15 years. His interests in ocean acidification and hypoxia are from the perspective of the commercial shellfish and crab industry and their long-term resilience.
Oregon Department of Environmental Quality
Jennifer has over 20 years’ experience working in water quality programs at the state and federal level. She’s been at Oregon DEQ since 2008, where she is currently the Water Quality Deputy Administrator. In her tenure at DEQ, she’s held several different roles within the water quality program, including managing Oregon’s Water Quality Standards program and the Water Quality Assessments program. Prior to DEQ, Jennifer built her expertise in water quality programs at U.S. EPA Headquarters working in water quality standards and permitting.
Jennifer has held several national leadership positions including serving as the President (2017-2018) and Vice President (2016-2017) of the Association of Clean Water Administrators. She also served as a member of the National Green Infrastructure Certification Program Governing Body convened by the Water Environment Federation and DC Water to establish the a national certification program for individuals who install, inspect, and maintain green infrastructure systems.
Jennifer received her Masters in Environmental Engineering from Johns Hopkins University and a B.S. in Civil Engineering from Washington State University.
Department of Land Conservation and Development
Andy Lanier is the Marine Affairs Coordinator with Oregon’s federally approved Coastal Management Program. He holds a M.S. degree in Marine Resource Management from Oregon State University. Andy is the Co-Chair of the West Coast Ocean Data Portal and is a staffer to the Ocean Policy Advisory Council. Throughout his career he has been dedicated to promoting the inclusion of science based considerations regarding ocean acidification and hypoxia into state management and policy.
DR. JAMES SUMICH
Oregon Ocean Science Trust
James Sumich has worked in the field of marine science in Oregon and throughout the West Coast for over 50 years, receiving his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from Oregon State University. Recently retired as Professor of Marine Biology and Zoology at Grossmont Community College, California, his research interests have focused on the biology of gray whales and other mysticetes. James currently serves as a Trustee for Oregon Ocean Science Trust, where he provides scientific guidance to the board on the development of the Trust's scientific grant program. James’s interest in OAH stems from his growing concern that local or regional solutions are increasingly crucial to address the numerous problems associated with increasing atmospheric CO2 levels.
DR. SHELBY WALKER
Oregon Sea Grant
Shelby Walker is the director of the Oregon Sea Grant. She joined Oregon Sea Grant, coming to them from the NOAA Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research’s Office of Policy, Planning and Evaluation, where she was responsible for NOAA research planning efforts and served as associate director for the NOAA RESTORE Act Science Program. Prior to NOAA, she was an associate program director in the National Science Foundation’s Ocean Sciences Division, where she helped lead the Ocean Technology and Interdisciplinary Coordination Program. She holds a Ph.D. degree in Marine Science from the College of William and Mary, and is a former Sea Grant Knauss Fellow.
Conservation Organization Representative
Fran Recht is the Habitat Program Manager for the Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission. In her position she acts to conserve and restore freshwater, estuarine and ocean habitats. She works by advancing policies and actions through work with collaborative, multiparty groups such as the Pacific Fishery Management Council, the Pacific Marine and Estuarine Fish Habitat Partnership, forest service stewardship groups, and local watershed councils. She also brings her academic background in biochemistry and marine resource management to this issue.
Over the last 28 years Brandii has worked in efforts that involve seafood processing and fishing, as well as political, regulatory, and educational aspects of commercial seafood. She is driven by opportunities to share knowledge and innovation. Brandii believes that one of the most important aspects of improving seafood harvest quality and sustainability is to create educational opportunities. To this end, I have taught classes on line and in person, spoke at industry events and worked one on one with fishermen to guide them through independent marketing and processing. Brandii has taught classes to fishermen in a classroom and on their vessel to increase the awareness of quality handling measures and wrote a technical column for Fishermen News. Brandii has traveled and spoke with processors and fisher groups about quality handling methodologies and emerging technologies in Alaska, Washington and Oregon and currently serve on the NFI and ASMI technical committees.
Shellfish Industry Representative
DR. JESSICA MILLER
Jessica Miller is a Professor in Fisheries and Wildlife at Oregon State University (OSU), a member of the Coastal Oregon Marine Experiment Station (COMES), and stationed at the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, Oregon. She leads the Marine & Anadromous Fisheries Ecology Program within COMES and also teaches an undergraduate and graduate course focused on the early life history of fishes. Since 2012, she has been OSU’s Project Director for the Living Marine Resources Cooperative Science Center, a NOAA-funded effort to promote underrepresented communities in marine science. Her research interests include the evolution of life history diversity and dispersal, mixing and migration in marine and anadromous populations. Through collaborations, she combines field and lab studies with biogeochemistry to address basic questions in marine and fisheries ecology as well as contribute to management and conservation efforts. She received a BA in Zoology from the University of Montana, a MS in Fisheries from University of Washington, and a PhD in Biology from the University of Oregon.
Tribal Government Representative
John Schaefer earned his B.S. degree from Oregon State University in biology, and has acted as the water protection specialist and biologist for the Confederated Tribes of the Coos, Lower Umpqua & Siuslaw Indians since 2015. As part of the Department of Natural Resources & Culture team, John represents the CTCLUSI natural resource interests at local stakeholder meetings and watershed councils. Prior, to working for the tribes, John was shellfish biologist for ODFW for over ten years. He is a Coos Tribal member with interests in first foods and other cultural resources, and is dedicated to preserving natural resources and creating local adaptation actions, in light of changing ocean conditions from OAH.
DR. KRISTEN SHEERAN
EX-OFFICIO Governor’s Office Representative
Kristen Sheeran serves as Climate and Energy Policy Advisor to Governor Kate Brown and is the Director of the Carbon Policy Office. An economist by training, she has researched and practiced in the field of energy and environmental policy for over fifteen years. Kristen earned her Ph.D. degree in economics from American University and B.S. degree in economics and political science from Drew University. Her career spans leadership positions in the private, public, and non-profit sectors. She has published numerous articles on carbon policy and other related climate issues.
Contact the OAH Council
Charlotte Regula Whitefield
OA Policy Assistant Project Leader
Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife
Marine Resources Program
Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife
Marine Studies Initiative
Professor, College of Earth, Ocean, & Atmospheric Sciences