On December 6th, the Puget Sound Partnership Science Panel announced two new members, Tracy Collier and John Stein, as well as the renewed membership of current Science Panel Chair Jan Newton.
Tracy Collier currently serves as the science advisor to NOAA’s Oceans and Human Health Program, where he provides science direction in the areas of chemical contaminants, pathogens, and algal toxins and their effects on human and ecosystem health. The OHH Program also investigates benefits from the sea, including the development of novel drugs.
Most recently, Collier has been working nationally, with a focus on California’s Bay-Delta system. He says he is excited to get back to more direct involvement with Puget Sound. As a science panel member, Collier says he is especially interested in promoting environmental assessment and monitoring. “It’s not enough to say that we completed a restoration action,” says Collier. “We also need to understand its effectiveness.”
John Stein is the current Acting Science Director of the Northwest Fisheries Science Center (NWFSC), NOAA Fisheries Service in Seattle. The NWFSC conducts basic and applied research to support the management and conservation of the Pacific Northwest region’s anadromous and marine fishery resources and their habitats. Dr. Stein oversees the Science Center’s headquarters in Seattle and five research stations in Washington and Oregon.
Recently, Dr. Stein has become more involved in the emerging area of the effects of the state of the ocean on the health of humans, both health benefits and disease risk, and the biological effects of ocean acidification. He currently is one of the co-leads for a NOAA effort developing a national ocean acidification research plan and is a lead for initiating a NOAA Fisheries ocean acidification research program.
Jan Newton serves as the current Puget Sound Science Panel Chair. As principal oceanographer at UW’s Applied Physics Laboratory, Newton provides oversight of an observational and modeling study of hypoxia in Hood Canal. Newton also is an assistant professor at UW’s School of Oceanography, where she works with faculty and students to develop and conduct research on biological oceanography of Pacific Northwest coastal and inland waters.