This is a listing of brief speaker bios for the 2013 ASBPA Coastal Summit
David C. Apy is Special Counsel with Philadelphia based Saul Ewing LLP, resident in its Princeton, New Jersey office. Mr. Apy concentrates his practice in products liability, business, and environmental litigation. He frequently represents property owners in litigation concerning beach ownership, access, use and replenishment under the Public Trust Doctrine.. Mr. Apy is on the Advisory Board of the Urban Coast Institute of, Monmouth University and is a supporter of The Jersey Shore Partnership’s efforts to facilitate beach replenishment. Mr. Apy received his undergraduate degree from Brown University (1982) and law degree from Case Western Reserve School of Law (1986). He is admitted to practice law in the state and federal courts of New Jersey and the United States Court of Appeals, Third Circuit.
Mike Aslaksen is currently the Chief of NOAA’s National Geodetic Survey’s Remote Sensing Division (RSD). Mike has been with NOAA for 20 years and has served in a variety of operational, technical, and policy positions ranging from performing field surveys supporting Nautical and Aeronautical Charting to serving as the Chief of Staff for NOAA’s Ocean Service. RSD supports NOAA's mapping and charting mission through the Coastal Mapping Program and the FAA Aeronautical Survey Program by conducting photogrammetric and remote sensing surveys of the nation's coastal zone and major airports as well as supporting emergency response remote sensing surveys for incidents of national concern. These have included to responding to the attacks of September 11, 2001, Hx Katrina, and most recently Superstorm Sandy.
Gwen Baker has more than 25 years of engineering experience. She serves as a CDM Federal Region Manager (national account manager) for Water Resources related services to include civil works studies, design and construction and emergency management for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Bureau of Reclamation, and FEMA as well as other federal agencies worldwide. Prior to her assignment at CDM Smith, she completed a 22-year military career as a U.S. Army Engineer Officer and paratrooper, serving stateside and overseas in every type of engineering unit. She commanded at every level and led teams involved in combat operations, engineering, construction, mobile prime power, logistics, geospatial engineering, homeland defense, and strategic planning and policy assignments. She has served as senior staff for joint and interagency commands. Her final assignment in the military was as the Commander, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Philadelphia District, where she led a 500-person team managing a diverse $400 million+ annual program which included water resources planning, navigation in federal channels, construction on U.S. Army and Air Force bases, environmental remediation services, ecosystem restoration, regulatory oversight for U.S. waters and wetlands, contracting and procurement support to DOD efforts in the Middle East, and disaster response planning and operations throughout a 13,000 mile Delaware River watershed (New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland).
Doug Bellomo, P.E. is a civil engineer with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in Washington, DC. He is currently the Director of the Risk Analysis Division within the Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration at FEMA. Division responsibilities include flood hazard mapping as part of the National Flood Insurance Program, Natural Hazard Risk Assessment, Mitigation Planning, as well as implementing the National Dam Safety program. Mr. Bellomo is a professional engineer and holds a B.S. and M.S. in Civil Engineering. He has been working in the fields of flood hazard identification, risk management, and mitigation since 1993.
Theodore A. (Tab) Brown, P.E. Chief, Planning and Policy Division and Mississippi Valley Division Regional Integration Team: Since January 2009, Theodore A. (Tab) Brown has served as Chief of Planning & Policy in the Headquarters, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Washington, DC. He also serves as the Leader of the Mississippi Valley Division Regional Integration Team in Headquarters. In this capacity, he provides leadership and oversight for Coastal Louisiana post-Katrina reconstruction and planning. He also serves as the leader of the USACE-wide Planning Community of Practice. In his current position, Mr. Brown formulates and coordinates Army Civil Works policy with the Department of Army, Federal agencies, and Office of Management and Budget (OMB); serves as Executive Liaison for the Chief's Environmental Advisory Board (EAB), and provides representation to other Federal Advisory Committees. He serves as principal Civil Works point of contact with congressional authorizing committees on policy and planning matters.
Tom Campbell, P.E., ASBPA Vice President: President of Coastal Planning & Engineering in Boca Raton, FL, Campbell is an engineer who works with a variety of coastal communities. His national experience helping communities renourish their beaches brings hands-on knowledge of coastal engineering.
Therese Conant is a senior biologist for the National Marine Fisheries Service Office of Protected Resources Endangered Species Division. She has over 20 years of experience in the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and is currently working on ESA section 10(a)(1)(B) permits. Prior to her present position, she was the Deputy to the Division that conducts ESA section 7 consultations.
Walter Cruickshank, Ph.D., Deputy Director: As Deputy Director of BOEM, Dr. Cruickshank assists the Director in the administration of programs that manage the development of the Nation’s offshore resources in an environmentally and economically responsible way. These programs include leasing, plan administration, environmental studies, National Environmental Policy Act analysis, resource evaluation, economic analysis and the Renewable Energy Program. Prior to becoming the Deputy Director of BOEM upon its establishment in October 2011, Dr. Cruickshank served as Deputy Director of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE) and the former MMS since 2002. Dr. Cruickshank previously served as the Bureau's Associate Director for Policy and Management Improvement and has worked in the Department of the Interior for more than 25 years. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in Geological Sciences from Cornell University and a Doctorate in Mineral Economics from the Pennsylvania State University.
Margaret Davidson, Acting Director National Ocean Service (NOS) Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management: Margaret Davidson has been an active participant in coastal resource management issues since 1978, when she earned her juris doctorate in natural resources law from Louisiana State University. She later earned a master’s degree in marine policy and resource economics from the University of Rhode Island. Davidson served as special counsel and assistant attorney general for the Louisiana Department of Justice and was the executive director of the South Carolina Sea Grant Consortium. She joined NOAA as the director of the NOAA Coastal Services Center in 1995. Davidson also served as the acting assistant administrator for NOAA’s National Ocean Service from 2000 to 2002. She holds a faculty appointment at the University of Charleston and serves on the adjunct faculties of Clemson University and the University of South Carolina. Davidson has served on numerous local, state, and federal committees and has provided leadership for national professional societies. She has focused her professional work on environmentally sustainable aquaculture, mitigation of coastal hazards, and impacts of climate variability on coastal resources. In April 2012, Davidson was appointed acting director of the NOS Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management (OCRM). In this position, Davidson will play a leading role as OCRM and the Coastal Services Center plan to join forces and bring a greater and better-coordinated level of products and services to their constituents.
Braxton Davis is the Director of the North Carolina Division of Coastal Management, which is headquartered in Morehead City. He also serves as past chair of the Coastal States Organization in Washington D.C. Previously, he served as Director of Policy and Planning for the South Carolina coastal management program in Charleston. Braxton earned a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Sciences from the University of Virginia, a Masters degree in Biological Sciences from Florida International University, and a Ph.D. in Marine Affairs from the University of Rhode Island.
Nicole Elko, Ph.D., ASBPA Secretary: Elko operates her own consulting business out of Charleston, South Carolina that specializes in the management, funding, and public relations of major beach nourishment projects. Elko has a Ph.D. in Coastal Geology, is familiar with coastal erosion issues, and has published several research papers on the performance of beach nourishment at erosional hotspots. As the former Coastal Coordinator for Pinellas County, FL, Elko managed five major beach nourishment projects (federal & local) along 35 miles of shoreline.
Bill Hanson: Vice President of U.S. Business Development for Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Company, primarily working with Corps of Engineers and dredging policy issues as well as developing business opportunities for Great Lakes in the private non-Corps sector. He holds a BS in Ocean Engineering from Texas A&M University, where he also currently serves on the Board of Industry Advisors. He is past-chair of the Western Dredging Association; and current Federal Advisory Council Member of both the Outer Continental Shelf Policy Committee at the Dept. of the Interior and the International Trade Advisory Council with the Dept. of Commerce. He also serves on the COPRI Board of Governors.
John Headland has 32 years of experience in coastal and port engineering. He is a Senior Vice President and Practice Leader for Coastal, Environment, and Water Resources for Moffatt & Nichol. He is a member of the USACE Coastal Engineering Research Board, Permanent International Association of Navigational Congresses (PIANC) International Vice President and a member of the National Research Council’s Marine Board.
Thomas O. Herrington, Ph.D.: Assistant Director, Center for Maritime Systems, Stevens Institute of Technology, Hoboken, New Jersey. Herrington is the Vice President of the NSBPA, Director of the NJ Coastal Protection Technical Assistant Service, and the Stevens-NJ Sea Grant Cooperative Extension in Coastal Processes. He is a member of the Jersey Shore Partnership BOD and the NWS Storm Ready Communities Committee. Herrington is a former member of the NJ State Hazard Mitigation Planning Team and past chair of the USCG NY/NJ Harbor Education Subcommittee.
Stacey M. Jensen is a Regulatory Program Manager at the Headquarters for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Washington, DC. Her primary topics of responsibility are jurisdiction of waters of the U.S., climate change and sea level rise, compliance and enforcement, and agricultural issues; her primary areas of responsibility includes an area from the Great Lakes down to Nashville, and both Hawaii and Alaska. She grew up along the coastal waters of southern California and attended UCLA for her undergraduate and graduate degrees in environmental science and engineering. She began working for the Regulatory Branch of the Los Angeles District in 2004 as a Project Manager and moved to the New York District office in 2007 where she was a Section Chief of the Regulatory Branch. She had responsibility over New York City, Long Island, and parts of coastal New Jersey and upstate New York. Approximately 90% of the projects in her section involved coastal waters, and ranged in type and complexity such as residential and commercial developments, shoreline stabilizations, beach nourishment, restoration activities, dredging, utility lines, and renewable energy projects. Stacey began working at Headquarters on a detail assignment in 2011 and was then hired as a full-time Program Manager.
Cliff Jones is the Deputy Chief of Planning and Policy at the North Atlantic Division of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. He has been with the North Atlantic Division since 2008, and has been actively involved in plan formulation and flood risk management. Mr. Jones joined the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in 1988 with the New York District, beginning as a project planner, then migrating to project management, before moving on to his current role at the regional division office. He holds a Bachelors Degree in Ocean Engineering from the Florida Institute of Technology.
Dr. Bill Martin leads a team of over 200 researchers, support staff and contractors in developing technologies primarily in support of the civil works missions in navigation and flood and coastal storm damage reduction. Military support is provided in the areas of military hydrology and force projection in austere coastal and port environments. Research projects include the areas of coastal and inland field data collection, coastal inlets, flood and coastal storm damage reduction, navigation and dredging research, fish passage and fish friendly turbine design, ground water investigations, sediment transport, estuarine engineering, hurricane and hydrodynamic modeling, watershed hydrology and river engineering. The Laboratory executes its program via a mixture of high performance computing applications, physical models and desk studies.
Mike McGarry: Beach Project Manager for Brevard County Florida, Mike administers coastal management and restoration projects along 72 miles of Atlantic Ocean shoreline. Since 2003 he has completed seven federal and non-federal projects placing sixty four million dollars of sand along thirty five miles of shoreline. McGarry holds a bachelor’s degree in Marine Biology from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington and a master’s degree in Oceanography/Coastal Zone Management from the Florida Institute of Technology.
Brad Pickel, ASBPA Treasurer: Pickel is co-principal of Seahaven Consulting, a coastal and environmental consulting firm in Beaufort, SC. Prior to starting his own business in 2007, he was the director of beach management for the Walton County, Florida Tourist Development Council for seven years and oversaw beach restoration and maintenance activities for the 26-mile long shoreline. He received a B.S. in Marine Biology from Auburn University and M.S. in Marine Sciences from the University of South Alabama.
Tony Pratt, ASBPA Vice President: Delaware’s shoreline and waterway administrator, Pratt oversees programs related to beach nourishment, beach construction regulation, coastal hazards mitigation and waterway management. He was a member of the National Research Council Committee on Beach Nourishment and Protection and the Heinz Center Panel on Risk Vulnerability and the True Costs of Coastal Hazards.
Dr. Barbara Ransom is presently a Program Director at the National Science Foundation in the Division of Ocean Sciences. She has also worked as a funding evaluator and program manager for university/State and private foundations. As a successful soft money researcher, responsible for generating proposals to fund her salary and support her personnel and operations, she understands what it is like to be on both sides of the funding desk. In her talk, she will share insights and strategies for success that will make you more effective and efficient in your efforts to fund your research.
Todd Roessler: A lawyer at Kilpatrick Stockton LLP, he has extensive experience related to coastal and environmental issues. With respect to coastal law, Roessler's practice is primarily related to beach erosion and sand management issues. Before attending law school, he earned a Masters degree in marine sciences at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where his thesis related to the effects of a federal navigation project on nearshore processes on an adjacent barrier island.
Richard E. Sayers, Jr., Ph.D. Rick Sayers is the Chief, Division of Consultation, Habitat Conservation Planning, Recovery, and State Grants in the Fish and Wildlife Service’s headquarters office in Arlington, VA. He works closely with Service personnel and others who negotiate and implement the Interagency Cooperation procedures, the Habitat Conservation Planning procedures, the recovery planning, implementation, and delisting procedures, and the Service’s Cooperative Endangered Species grants programs. Rick earned a doctorate in Zoology from the University of Maine, a Master of Science in Aquatic Biology from Eastern Michigan University, and a Bachelor of Science in Biology from the University of Notre Dame. Rick’s outside interests include fishing, traveling, and helping his wife raise assistance-dogs-in-training for Veterans Moving Forward.
Harry Simmons, ASBPA President: Simmons is mayor of Caswell Beach, NC, and chairman of the Brunswick Beaches Consortium, a countywide sand management group. He is executive director of NC Beach, Inlet & Waterway Association, a coastal education and advocacy organization. Mayor Simmons is a member of the NC Coastal Resources Advisory Council and is treasurer of the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway Association. He was recently appointed to the National Sea Grant Advisory Board. He spent most of his first career as owner of Simmons Management Group, a music management firm and is still a voter for the prestigious Grammy Awards.
Angela Somma became the Director of the Endangered Species Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service in 2005. As Division Director, she oversees national programs and policies to implement the Endangered Species Act for marine and anadromous species. Those programs include recovery of threatened and endangered species, placing species on the threatened and endangered species list, designating experimental populations, critical habitat designations, protective regulations for threatened species, and cooperative programs with States. In addition, the Division coordinates with the National Marine Fisheries Service’s regional offices and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to ensure consistent implementation of the Endangered Species Act. Ms. Somma joined the National Marine Fisheries Service in 1992 as an international affairs specialist, coordinating the agency’s international sea turtle recovery programs, serving as the agency’s program manager for its trade and the environment program, and providing staff support to international organizations such as the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), the Pacific Salmon Commission, and the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization’s Committee on Fisheries. In July 2000, she became the Snake River salmon recovery coordinator. In that capacity, she coordinated habitat restoration and species recovery programs for threatened and endangered Snake River salmon and steelhead in Idaho, Oregon and Washington, and helped develop a draft recovery plan for those species. In 2004, she was appointed special assistant to the National Marine Fisheries Service’s Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs. In that position she reviewed, tracked and monitored all of the agency’s regulatory actions, including those to support protected resources, sustainable fisheries, and habitat conservation. Ms. Somma received Bachelor’s of Arts degrees in political science and Spanish from the State University of New York at Albany (1989), and an M.S. in Environmental Science from the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry (1992).
Dr. Hilary Stockdon is a Research Oceanographer with the U.S. Geological Survey Coastal and Marine Science Center in St. Petersburg, FL. She received her B.S. in Geology from Duke University and her M.S. and Ph.D. in Oceanography from Oregon State University. Her research focuses on nearshore processes, coastal morphology, and large-scale coastal behavior. For the past 15 years, she has worked as a scientist with the USGS National Assessment of Coastal Change Hazards project, investigating the impacts of hurricanes on barrier islands with the goal of understanding processes that drive coastal change and predicting how beaches will respond to future storms.
Margot Walsh is executive director of the Jersey Shore Partnership, a not-for-profit, non-partisan advocacy organization for beach protection funding. She also is President of the Jersey Shore Partnership Foundation, established in 2006 as a 501©3 to provide educational programs and outreach activities to support the Jersey Shore Partnership’s efforts to preserve and protect New Jersey’s 130 mile coastline that extends from Sandy Hook Bay to Cape May Point.. She built a corporate career as a strategic planner, problem solver and initiator of new ideas as a director of communications in Prudential and as senior vice president of administration and development with the Foundation for New Jersey Public Broadcasting. As executive director of the Jersey Shore Partnership she has enhanced the value and reputation of the not-for-profit environmental organization through public/private partnerships and outreach to elected officials and community leaders. Walsh is a member of the American Shore & Beach Preservation Association, Eastern Monmouth Chamber of Commerce, the Monmouth/Ocean Development Council, the MODC Environment and Energy Committee, the SeaGrant Consortium Stakeholder Advisory Board, and the National Recreation Area Fort Hancock (Sandy Hook) 21st Century Advisory Committee.
Lee Weishar, Ph.D., PWS: A Senior Scientist with the Woods Hole Group since 1989, He has more than 30 years experience in the fields of oceanography, coastal engineering, sediment transport, ecological restoration, environmental impact assessment, and project/program management. Prior to joining the Woods Hole Group, he was employed by the USACE Waterways Experiment Station (now ERDC). Weishar specializes in coastal engineering and wetland/marsh restoration and the integration of biological, ecological, and hydraulic data into wetland restoration designs to ensure that the design will meet the restoration objectives.
Geoffrey Laird Wikel, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management: Geoffrey Wikel is presently the Chief, Branch of Environment Coordination in the Division of Environmental Assessment, Office of Environmental Programs. Prior to that, Geoff served as an oceanographer at BOEM. He has been responsible for a wide range of environmental documents, studies, and inter-agency and stakeholder coordination pertaining to marine mineral, oil and gas, and renewable energy development on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). He has contributed to bureau policies and guidance to ensure compliance with various environmental laws and regulations, including the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), Endangered Species Act, Magnuson Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, Coastal Zone Management Act, and National Historic Preservation Act. Previously Geoff worked as a marine geologist at the Maryland Department of Natural Resources and Virginia Institute of Marine Science. He was responsible for a wide range of geotechnical, geophysical, and oceanographic surveys, sedimentological and geochemical lab and data analyses, project management, and report preparation. He also worked as a coastal scientist with the Ohio Office of Coastal Management, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, where he served as a special assistant to the Director. Geoff graduated from the Joint Degree Graduate Program at The College of William and Mary with a M.S. in Marine Science and M.P.P. in Public Policy. He earned a B.S. in Natural Science and Mathematics and B.A. in English from Washington and Lee University.
Jennifer Wozencraft is a Research Physical Scientist in the Coastal and Hydraulics Laboratory of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Engineer Research and Development Center, currently detailed as Director of the Joint Airborne Lidar Bathymetry Technical Center of Expertise (JALBTCX) and Program Manager for the USACE National Coastal Mapping Program. Ms. Wozencraft has worked in the field of lidar bathymetry for the past 17 years, beginning with the USACE SHOALS program during her college years. She earned her bachelor's degree from the University of Alabama in mathematics and dance and her master's in marine sciences from the University of South Alabama.
Jim Wyerman joined the Mississippi River Delta Restoration Campaign in April as Director of Strategic Partnerships and Communications for Environmental Defense Fund. His role is to provide strategic direction in developing communications plans, engaging high-influence individuals to support the RESTORE Act and building long-term support for coastal restoration from key business sectors. He is currently leading a project to inform and engage the navigation sector in long-term solutions. Wyerman brings 25 years’ experience in senior leadership at national conservation organizations. Most recently, he was Chief Program Officer at Carbonfund.org and VP of Communications for the American Forest Foundation. Previously, he directed development and communications for the Land Trust Alliance and was VP of Programs at Defenders of Wildlife. He also served as Executive Director of Maryland PIRG and the grassroots group 2020 Vision.
Helen S. Young is the Deputy Commissioner of Coastal Resources for the Texas General Land Office. She oversees a team of professionals who operate the Texas Coastal Management Program and numerous federal and state grant programs that fund projects and studies to address erosion response, coastal and marsh restoration, water quality, hazard mitigation, hurricane debris removal and other critical coastal issues. Helen earned a Master’s of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Texas in 1991 and has served the State of Texas in various roles since that time. She has worked for the General Land Office since 2000. Helen is a member of the American Shore and Beach Preservation Association (ASBPA) and the Coastal States Organization (CSO). She also represents General Land Office Commissioner Jerry Patterson as the Texas delegate to the Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Task Force.
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