Sanctuary Advisory Council Members
A dedicated champion for ocean conservation, Francesca was instrumental in designing marine protected areas for our north central coast study region as a primary stakeholder in the California Marine Life Protection Act Initiative. Francesca also played an important role in the creation of a diverse coalition campaign to protect sharks that ultimately succeeded in the passage of AB-376 (which bans the possession & sale of shark fins in California). A multi-agency SCUBA instructor (PADI MSDT #186082/ DAN #11837) and internationally known freediver (Safety Supervisor #1102 with Performance Freediving International) and AIDA judge, Francesca also serves as the Editor-at-Large for Deeperblue.com and the CMO of Gannet Dive Company. When she is not in the water, the former Director of Strategic Initiatives at NRDC, works to advance equity and the clean energy economy through a series of climate & energy related campaigns.
Kathi (Koontz) George
Kathi George leads whale entanglement response and prevention at The Marine Mammal Center. As a Level 3 Co-Investigator on NOAA's Marine Mammal Health & Stranding Response Program's permit, she is permitted to respond to entangled whales. She has participated in in six whale disentanglements, numerous entangled whale responses, and over fifty sea lion disentanglements. Kathi is also a member of the California Dungeness Crab Fishing Gear Working Group where she represents the large whale entanglement response network. The multistakeholder Working Group shares perspectives, identifies and reviews data, and generates creative solutions to mitigating large whale entanglement and supporting healthy fisheries. Kathi is an avid diver, snorkeler, and advocate for marine wildlife. She has a degree in Industrial Engineering from Purdue University and spends as much time as she can underwater and on boats in addition to enjoying California's coasts and mountains with her husband and son.
Bibit is a broadly trained biologist interested in the consequences and maintenance of biodiversity in marine and terrestrial ecosystems. Her work is rooted in community ecology, but she draws upon landscape and ecosystem ecology as well. On the landscape scale, she has been interested in identifying the processes that maintain biodiversity and the effect of landscape context and habitat spatial configuration on community composition, especially in stressed and fragmented ecosystems. On the local scale, she has been concerned with understanding the relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem function. Part of her research has been motivated by seeking to understand these dynamics in order to conserve and restore habitats. She received her Ph.D. in Ecology from U.C. Davis and Masters degrees in Botany from Oregon State University and Marine Sciences from U.C. Santa Cruz. She completed a National Parks Ecological Research Fellowship at U.C. Berkeley before coming to City College of San Francisco in 2005. Her teaching experiences are not limited to the college classroom but also include interpreting the natural world across ages (preschoolers to elderhostelers) in a variety of settings. She loves to learn and find that this is translated into loving to teach too. She enjoys sharing her enthusiasm for the natural world with students, both in the classroom and the field.
City College of San Francisco
San Francisco, CA
Mary Miller is an accomplished science communicator and educator and is emeritus program director for environmental science partnerships at the San Francisco Exploratorium. While at the renowned museum, she led multidisciplinary teams in creating innovative and engaging content about current scientific research for the museum's award-winning website, exhibits and public programs. She has experience as a livestream producer and program host, science writer, online media producer, and liaison to the scientific community on numerous education and outreach partnerships.
With a background in marine science, Mary works closely with the ocean observing, policy and conservation communities. She chairs the Executive Committee of the Central and Northern Ocean Observing System's Governing Council and led the Exploratorium’s 10-year partnership with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and a 5-year partnership with UC Davis. In this capacity she facilitates collaborations to develop visualizations, media narratives, and interpretations of ongoing environmental research, including climate change and ocean and atmospheric research.
She was also the pioneer for the Exploratorium’s "Wired Pier" project that instrumented Pier 15 with environmental sensors to gather and display water quality, weather, air quality and oceanographic data and make that data available to the public through displays, websites and interactive exhibits. She authors the Fluid Planet blog and is co-author of the book Watching Weather (Henry Holt, 1998). She has won numerous Webby Awards for website development and is a AAAS Fellow. Mary has a B.A. in biology and marine studies and a master's certificate in science communication from U.C. Santa Cruz. She developed the media production track and taught for 10 years at the UC Santa Cruz Science Communication Program.
Jaime is the Director of the California Current Group at Point Blue Conservation Science and Adjunct Professor at San Francisco State University’s Estuary & Ocean Science Center. Working to increase the pace, scale and impact of climate-smart conservation in the ocean. Strategic priorities include developing science and tools to improve fisheries sustainability, guide ocean zoning, and build support for ocean conservation. Lead and manage a 16 staff group, 20-25 seasonal volunteers and 8-10 graduate students. Working collaboratively with partners at federal and state agencies, academia, and environmental NGOs to conduct applied science and implement solutions to reduce threats to wildlife and ensure sustainable human uses. Born and raised in Peru, I completed my BS in Biology at Universidad Nacional Agraria La Molina in Peru (1992) and my PhD in Biological Sciences at the University of California Irvine (2004). I have marine fieldwork experience since 1987 in Peru, Galapagos, Antarctica, Alaska and California. I serve as science advisor to several federal and state agencies, and NGOs.
Dr. Hines is the Associate Director of the Estuary & Ocean Science Center, and is a Professor in Geography at San Francisco State University. Her research addresses population and community ecology of threatened and endangered species incorporating local conservation efforts and regional scale coastal and marine management science. Her emphasis is on the evolution of consistent standards of field methods and monitoring techniques, and the creation of educational materials to be applied to community-based conservation planning. Dr. Hines has extensive (since 1990) experience in GIS and remote sensing for marine and coastal spatial planning. She has conducted marine mammal research in Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia, Myanmar and Belize since 1999. Dr. Hines is an ASEAN research Fulbright Fellow, and a member of the International Whaling Commission Expert Advisory Panel on Bycatch. She is committed to collaborating internationally with in-country scientists to solve conservation problems threatening marine mammals. In California, Dr. Hines works closely with the National Marine Sanctuaries and local scientists around San Francisco Bay to model habitat and human uses for marine mammals and seabirds. With her students, she works to create risk assessments for anthropogenic threats such as shipping collisions, marine megafaunal bycatch and the effects of sea level rise on pinnipeds, sea otters, and birds in coastal estuaries.
Maritime Activities / Commercial
Jacqueline Moore is Vice President of the Pacific Merchant Shipping Association, representing U.S. and foreign flagged vessel carriers and marine terminal operators. Her career has spanned both the private and government sectors, including at the Port of Long Beach and the California Air Resources Board. Jacqueline earned a Master of Science in Climate Change from University College London in the United Kingdom, with a focus on international policy and a keen interest in the cryosphere. She is also a California State University, Sacramento graduate where she studied Geography and holds Esri Technical Certifications in GIS applications.
Jacqueline is a Northern California native who enjoys adventures with her passport, kayaking and hopes to one day overcome her fear of scuba diving.
Maritime Activities / Recreation
Abby Mohan (Vice Chair)
Abby has been a sailing instructor, naturalist, and charter boat captain on San Francisco Bay and Greater Farallones National Marine Sanctuary waters for the past 13 years. Abby carries a 100 ton license. She has sailed the west coast from Vancouver, Canada to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico and dodged many crab pots along the way. Through her work with SF Bay Adventures and the Schooner Freda B, she has partnered with Point Blue as part of the Farallon Patrol, sailing scientists and their gear out to the Farallon islands. She has worked on charter boats, delivery boats, and safety support and film production boats on the waters of the sanctuary. Abby is passionate about protecting the marine environment and spends most of her personal and professional time exploring it. In addition to working on the water, Abby has a master’s in Marine Science from the Estuary & Ocean Science Center in Tiburon, CA, and works on shoreline-related climate change adaptation and mitigation projects with Pathways Climate Institute in San Francisco, CA. These projects focus on consequences from future sea level rise and climatic conditions on nearshore communities and habitats and finding adaption pathways to respond and protect them.
San Franscisco, CA
Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, Peter has spent much of his life along the Northern California coast and San Francisco Bay.
Peter has captained the OGAP research vessel SAM over 9,000 nautical miles of genetic sampling voyages across the North Pacific since 2017. In close partnership with Dr. Moroz, he co-founded the Ocean Genome Atlas Project in 2020 and directs OGAP’s effort to create a high-resolution genomic map of marine life. OGAP has been selected as a UN Ocean-Shot project by the National Academy of Sciences as part of the UN Decade of the Oceans.
A ranked competitive sailor in high school and college, Peter quickly turned towards remote kayak and small boat expeditions as an instructor for the National Outdoor Leadership School in British Columbia and Baja Mexico and also started supporting environmental projects.
He trained as a skipper for San Francisco Baykeeper in 1995 and has conducted pollution patrols for nearly thirty years. He served on and chaired the board from 2011 to 2020 and is currently chair of the True Blue Leadership Circle and a board member.
A member of the Dolphin Club, he has organized and completed a number of open water swims including Napa-San Francisco, Sacramento-San Francisco and Tomales Bay.
Peter enjoys recreational crabbing and abalone diving.
Sarah Bates has been fishing commercially in San Francisco for 15 years. As a member of the San Francisco Crab Boat Owners Association, she advocates for public access to marine resources, sustainable fisheries, and thriving coastal communities. Sarah supports local seafood not only as healthy and delicious, but as an important part of our food and employment security.
Richard Ogg is an electrician by trade, and retired from Sonoma State University after 30+ years. He has been a commercial fisherman for the last 20 years and currently owner and Captain of the F/V Karen Jeanne. He's actively involved politically to support and maintain a healthy environment and thriving fisheries. An avid sportsman all his life, Richard has fished and dove along the Sonoma County coast for over 50 years. He currently serves on the Dungeness Crab Gear Working Group, Dungeness Crab Taskforce, California Salmon Council, the Spud Point Advisory Board, and is the Vice President of the Bodega Bay Fisherman's Marketing Association. Richard has been a resident of Sonoma County for 59 years and resides in Bodega Bay, California, with his wife Laurie and his two dogs Nessa and Buster.
Community-at-Large San Francisco/San Mateo
Bart has resided in the Bay Area for over 40 years, for most of those years in San Mateo County. He is currently dividing his time between writing a book on brown pelicans and commercializing a device that prevents whales from becoming entangled in fixed-line fishing gear without impacting fishing operations.
Bart served three terms on the MBNMS Advisory Council where he led working groups examining acoustic noise and recreational fishing gear entanglement of seabirds, and participated in the GFNMS Advisory Council Working Group looking at wildlife disruption by aircraft.
Bart is on the water nearly 100 days a year, and has notched over 8,000 band sightings, mostly pelicans. He has assisted with banding in Mexico, in the Gulf of California and the Pacific, and co-authored a scientific paper on the 2015 Refugio spill cleanup's impacts on pelicans.
An engineer, he holds patents in DNA sequencing and whale detangling. He worked in engineering and management roles in multiple Bay Area life science, technology and health care startups. He was a summer on-the-water docent in NOAA's Team Ocean program at Elkhorn Slough and Cannery Row for nearly a decade. Bart is a lifelong open water swimmer, a kayaker, and an abalone diver. His passion is working to encourage humans to better share the littoral with our rebounding wildlife populations using technology, education and awareness.
George Clyde has a home on Tomales Bay in Marshall, California. He has chaired a SAC Working Group on identifying sensitive areas within the Sanctuary where low flying aircraft would be regulated, has served on Sanctuary stakeholder working groups regarding restoration of native oysters in Tomales Bay and the Tomales Bay Vessel Management Plan, has served as a Sanctuary Beach Watch volunteer and is a former member and Chair of the Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Council. George is an Associate Director of the Marin Resource Conservation District, an officer and director of the East Shore Planning Group and a member of the Tomales Bay Watershed Council. He had a leading role in forming a community septic system for Marshall shore-side properties, and he has participated in midnight surveys of spawning grunion at Dillon Beach and the Audubon Canyon Ranch winter bird counts on Tomales Bay. As a retired lawyer, George's passion for sailing led to professional engagements as legal and rules advisor for four America's Cup yacht racing teams. He is an enthusiastic, if not always successful, fisherman.
Richard James is a fourth generation Californian and lifelong Bay Area native who since 2009, has physically removed over seven tons of toxic debris (and counting) from the local coast and waters with his backpack and kayak. Observing human behaviors and long accepted commercial behaviors informs his passion to stop harmful practices and stem the flow of poison into the sea. He sits on the board of the Tomales Bay Watershed Foundation, is a member of the Chileno Valley Newt Brigade and a former director of The Lake Merritt Institute. Observing and listening to the coastal environment or the southern sierra-nevada, photography, backpacking and fishing are some of his favorite activities. He is the coastal custodian of Marin County and beyond.
California Natural Resources Agency
Executive Director, Ocean Protection Council; Deputy Secretary for Ocean and Coastal Policy, California Natural Resources Agency
Marine Ecosystems Program Manager
Ocean Protection Council
National Marine Fisheries Service
Montrose Settlements Restoration Program Manager/NOAA Restoration Center
National Park Service
Point Reyes National Seashore
Point Reyes Station, CA
Ben Becker, Ph.D.
Director and Marine Ecologist
Pacific Coast Science and Learning Center
US Fish and Wildlife Service
San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge Complex
Manager, Farallon National Wildlife Refuge Complex and Common Murre Restoration
San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge Complex
U.S. Coast Guard
LT Lelea Lingo
Coast Guard District Eleven, Response Enforcement
LTJG Andrew Kang
Coast Guard District Eleven, Response Enforcement
Tishma Patel serves as Sanctuary Advisory Council Coordinator for the Greater Farallones and Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuaries. She coordinates the Sanctuary Advisory Councils and leads broader community engagement projects that promote the Sanctuaries. Tishma holds a BA from California State University, Monterey Bay and holds an MS in Interdisciplinary Marine and Estuarine Science from San Francisco State University. She is a from Southern California who loves to be outdoors, read, write, and explore the rich lands and waters of our region.
San Francisco, CA
Bibit Traut, Vice Chair
George Clyde, Secretary
Past Council Members
Richard Charter, Conservation (Primary), 2002-2021
Bruce Bowser, Conservation (Primary), 2006-2021
John Largier, Research (Primary), 2007-2021
Joshua Russo, Maritime Activities Recreation (Alternate), 2014-2021
Joe Fitting, Community-at-Large SF/San Mateo (Primary), 2006-2021
Dominique Richard, Community-at-Large Marin (Primary), 2006-2021
Nancy Trissel, Community-at-Large Sonoma/Mendocino (Alternate), 2018-2021
Elizabeth Babcock, Education Primary, 2014-2020
Kellyx Nelson, Community-at-Large SF/San Mateo Primary, 2014-2017
Christy Walker, Community-at-Large SF/San Mateo Alternate, 2014-2017
Oliver York, Youth (Alternate), 2015-2017
Jackie Dragon, Conservation (Primary) 2008-2016
Caleb Rosen, Youth (Primary) 2014-2016
August Howell, Youth (Alternate) 2014-2015
Peter Grenell, Maritime Activities Commercial (Alternate) 2002-2015
Bob Wilson, Conservation (Primary) 2002-2014
Mick Menigoz, Maritime Activities Recreational (Primary) 2002-2014
Richard Keuhn, Community-At-Large Marin/Sonoma (Alternate) 2010-2014
Tim Duff, Community-At-Large SF/San Mateo (Alternate) 2010-2014
Brenda Donald, Research (Alternate); Community-At-Large (Primary) 2002-2010
Doris Welch, Education (Alternate) 2008-2010
Jonathan Stern, Research (Alternate) 2008-2010
Pat Conroy, Community-At-Large (Alternate) 2008-2010
Marc Gorelnik, Maritime Activities(Alternate) 2008-2010
Erin Simmons Montgomery, Conservation (Alternate) 2007-2008
Webster Otis, Community-At-Large (Alternate) 2007-2008
Mark Dowie, Community-At-Large (Primary & Alternate) 2002-2006
James Kelley, Research (Primary) 2002-2006
Gwen Heistand, Education (Alternate) 2002-2005
Karen Reyna, Conservation (Alternate) 2002-2005
Harlan Henderson, Community-At-Large (Primary) 2002-2004