Dr. Jonathan Stern
Jon joined the project in 1980, first as a volunteer but quickly became a co-investigator and in 1984 he began a parallel study in Monterey Bay. Jon has studied many other cetacean species including fin, pilot, killer, humpback and grey whales, bottlenose dolphins and harbor porpoise. Jon is also a co-investigator with Golden Gate Cetacean Research. Jon served as the Conservation Chair for the National Board of Directors for the American Cetacean Society. He currently teaches in the Biology Department at San Francisco State University and is adjunct professor at Texas A&M University. An ecologist by training, Jon studies the role of marine predators in ocean ecosystems.
Dr. Rus Hoelzel
Rus is another founder of the minke whale project. He studies the molecular and behavioural ecology of species in the wild, and has worked with a diversity of marine species, including various whales, dolphins, seals and fish. He is currently teaches in the School of Biological and Biomedical Sciences at the University of Durham (UK). Rus is interested in patterns of minke population genetic structure, and regional habitat use, especially with respect to foraging strategies.
Dr. Frances Robertson
Frances joined the minke whale project in 2005 as a volunteer, eventually becoming a collaborator. Frances' research interests include animal behavior, distribution and effects of human activities. Frances has utilized land, vessel and aerial survey platforms to collect data on cetaceans. She has experience as a marine mammal observer and is the Chair of the Executive Committee of the Marine Mammal Observer Association.
Visiting scientists and volunteers
Alison joined the project in September 2005 and visited again in 2011.She designed the original website and assisted in the field. Alison studied minke whales in Scotland (www.projectminke.com). She now works as a marine mammal observer and passive acoustic monitoring operator protecting marine mammals against offshore industry activities. Alison provides MMO and PAM training courses through her company Intelligent Ocean, and she sits on the Executive Committee of the Marine Mammal Observer Association.
Dr. Pia Anderwald
Pia conducted minke field work in 2004 while she was working towards her PhD with Rus at the University of Durham. She studied minke whale population genetic structure in the North Atlantic, and their comparative feeding ecology in the North Atlantic and North Pacific. Pia also earned her Masters degree in 2002 at the University of Zurich on niche differentiation among cetaceans in the North East Atlantic.
Duncan assisted the minke project during the 2005 and 2006 field seasons while a senior at MacClay High School in Tallahassee, FL. Duncan is now working on his PhD at Berkeley where he studies robotics and has created a robotic cockroach.... the fastest robot ever made! He has also assisted in excavating ancient shipwrecks in Egypt. Cool or what!
Katie assisted the minke project in 2005. Her interest in minke whales developed from a university exchange year (from Canada to Scotland) where she joined Alison to analyse Scottish minke whale data. She has since studied humpbacks in Hawaii and minke whales on the east coast of Canada. She later studied sea otters on the west coast of Canada and now works for an environmental consultancy company in Vancouver.
Dr. Meike Scheidat
Meike assisted the minke project in 2006. preceding a winter season on the Polarstern Expedition conducting aerial surveys for minke whales in the Antarctic. Meike is a marine mammal researcher at IMARES in the Netherlands and sits on the Scientific Committees of the IWC, IMARES and ASCOBANS. Meike's research interests include abundance, distribution, habitat use and human interactions with cetaceans.
There have been many volunteers over the years including: