Career Mentors

The Career Mentor program pairs current students with alumni who provide professional guidance in the transition from college to life after Eckerd.  With the success of the mentor program over the past four years, the mentors have been paired in very broad categories of their work to help with reading through biographies. 

Medical Field/General Sciences

Henry Ashworth '16| B.S. Biochemistry, Philosophy

Emergency Medicine Resident, MD MPH at Highland Hospital 

Henry Ashworth graduated Eckerd in 2016 with a B.S. in Biochemistry and Philosophy. While at Eckerd, Henry was one of the first members of EC-ERT, Club Head of Eckerd College CrossFit, an RA for the Service-Learning Dorm, a Ford Scholar, Marine Science Researcher and Mass Gen Summer Intern. Henry was also inducted into Phi Beta Kappa and awarded the President's Award for Outstanding Leadership and Service to the college.

After Eckerd, Henry helped develop a community emergency response team in Nepal on a Fulbright grant and researched equity gaps in the rural area the team responded to through a MPH at University College Dublin. He then attended Harvard Medical School where he focused on implementation science and social emergency medicine. Henry started residency in emergency medicine at Highland in 2022 and currently lives in Oakland. 

Outside of work, Henry likes skipping instead of walking, hugging friends and family, late night dancing, early morning adventures, playing the bass, climbing, and trying to speak Nepali or Spanish but ends up speaking Spanpali. Henry, like most Eckerd students, likes being in, around, or on any body of water (puddles included). 

Tom Battey '11| B.S. Marine Science

Resident Physician at University of Virginia Health System

Tom Battey graduated from Eckerd in 2011 with a B.S. in Marine Science (Biology) and a minor in Chemistry. While at Eckerd he worked on as many research projects as possible, played rugby, and took advantage of all the watersports St. Pete had to offer. Marine Science was a natural choice since his initial goal coming out of high school was to find a way to get paid to SCUBA dive and do science, although several strong mentoring relationships and formative experiences changed his path. Early in freshman year Dr. Denise Flaherty connected him with a post-doctoral researcher at USF-St. Petersburg focused on marine sensory biology. This began a 3 year position where Tom worked on projects exploring the relationships between sea lion brain structure volumes on MRI and levels of environmental neurotoxins. After this experience, he officially had the research bug and knew he loved imaging. In 2010, Tom was part of the first group of Eckerd interns at the Center for Human Genetic Research at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, MA - an experience organized and supported by alumna Dr. Susan Slaugenhaupt '85 via an NIH grant. During his senior year, he completed a thesis assessing the neurologic and developmental effects of pesticides and personal care product components on zebrafish and nematodes before returning to Boston. 

After graduating from Eckerd, Tom spent 4 transformative years working in a stroke imaging and genetics research lab at MGH developing new diagnostic markers and therapeutic targets for stroke while figuring out if he wanted to pursue a clinical or research career. He subsequently moved back to Baltimore to attend University of Maryland School of Medicine, graduating in 2019 and completing his intern year in internal medicine at Mercy Medical Center in the midst of COVID-19. He is now chief resident in the Diagnostic Radiology residency program at UVA in Charlottesville. After completing fellowship training in cardiothoracic imaging, Tom plans to pursue a career in academic medicine diagnosing patients using advanced imaging, teaching, conducting research, and mentoring residents, medical and undergraduate students as they work to identify a career path that is right for them.

Outside of the hospital, Tom is an outdoor enthusiast and new Dad who loves spending time with his family, grilling on his kamado, riding his bike on the roads and trails through the mountains around Charlottesville, playing mediocre golf and darts, and traveling around the country and world to meet up with friends from Eckerd. Although the science part is going pretty well so far, he is still working on finding a way to get paid to SCUBA dive. 

Susan Beaven | MD from Indiana University

Family Medicine Doctor at Private Practice

Susan Beaven was raised in Jasper, IN, a wonderful small town in southern Indiana where education, arts, basketball, and using your talents and skills to your potential were valued. Her undergraduate and graduate schools studies were at Indiana University, graduating from medical school there in 1982. 

Susan came to Bayfront Medical Center to serve her Family Medicine Residency and then began practice here in St Pete, Tampa and Tarpon Springs through the years. She began to formally study Integrative and Functional Medicine and became certified in 2013. In 2016, she was named one of the top 100 physicians who practice Integrative Medicine. Susan focused on wellness, nutrition, preventative health, women's health, and Functional Medicine-finding the root cause of the disease, and then treating them with an individual protocol. 

Susan enjoyed the educational aspects of her practice with patients and also in her community. Outside of her career, Susan has been active in her community. She has served on the board, as a chaplain, and other volunteer activities at First Unity. And she is beginning to be involved at Pass-A-Grille Community Church. Susan has enjoyed serving her community with the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay board and Greater St. Petersburg, where she served as Secretary, Vice Chair and Chair of that board. Preserving our environment and wildlife has also been a major concern of hers. She has supported environmental causes and wants to ramp up her involvement in these areas.

Jorge Giroud | MD from Northwestern University Medical School

Retired Director of Pediatric Cardiology at All Children's Hospital

Jorge is not taking new mentors this upcoming year.

Jorge Giroud is a highly accredited and well-respected Pediatric Cardiologist that spent much of his career working locally in the Tampa/St. Petersburg area. He received his BA from the University of Illinois, and his MD from Northwestern University Medical School. Jorge then went on to complete his residency in pediatrics at the University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Hospital, and stay with the University of Miami to complete his fellowship in Pediatric Cardiology Pediatric Critical Care. 

Jorge has served as a cardiologist or consulting cardiologist with All Children’s Hospital, Bayfront Medical Center, and Tampa General Hospital. He was also the Medical Director of Invasive Cardiology at All Children’s Hospital and The Medical Director of Pediatric Cardiology at Tampa Children's Hospital at St. Joseph's Hospital throughout his career. 

Throughout his career, Jorge has over 30 publications, led ground-breaking clinical research & investigations, presented on over 35 different medical talks and panels, and served on numerous advisory committees and review boards for All Children’s Hospitals. 

Now happily retired Jorge, is looking forward to providing mentorship to the next generation of incoming doctors. 

Kara Linna  ’92 | B.S. Chemistry

Forensic Scientist at U.S. Customs and Border Protection

Kara started at Eckerd College in August of 1988. As a native of St. Petersburg, she started with others from the area which had pluses and minuses. Autumn Term had a big impact on her, and she is still in contact with Dr. George Meese, her Autumn Term professor. She spent most of her time studying as she found chemistry very challenging, but she also took many classes about other cultures. These classes, along with Winter Terms in the Soviet Union and Hawaii, kicked her travel bug into high gear.  

After grad school (Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry), she started her career as a chemist with the EPA where she was involved in air pollution research. After six years, she joined Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in their Savannah Laboratory.

In her 16 years with CBP she has analyzed samples, traveled all over the country, and worked with officers, agents and import specialists. The laboratories that she works with assist officers and agents with controlled substance analysis, fingerprint processing and examining, radiation screening, and import specialists with trade analyses. CBP is responsible for not only border security but also facilitation of legitimate trade. All consumer goods not made in America, from raw material to finished goods are analyzed for their composition, country of origin, and/or compliance with US and International Trade Laws. Kara prefers trade analysis, where the work is constantly changing, while also participating in controlled substance analysis and fingerprint processing at times. Recent interests include auto parts, precious metals, designer clothes, and shoes.

Ryan G Nazar '07, MD, CIME, EMHA, CLSSBB | B.A. Psychology

Medical Director at eRounds, LLC, Performance Excellence Executive Consultant at Norton Healthcare, Certified Independent Medical Examiner at Commonwealth IME, LLC, PhD Candidate & Research Assistant at University of Louisville

Ryan graduated Summa Cum Laude from Eckerd College in 2007, with a Bachelor's degree of high distinction in Psychology and minors in Biology and Chemistry. While at Eckerd, Ryan was a part of the Pre-Health club, involved in Tampa Bay Watch, and interned at Moffitt Cancer Center. 

After Eckerd, Ryan earned his Doctor of Medicine at the University of Kentucky with High Honors Distinction and national recognition from the American Society of Clinical Pathology in research. He went on to complete his surgical internship in neurosurgery at the University of Toronto and 5 years of neurosurgery residency at the University of Louisville. During Ryan's residency, he patented a 3-D printed cervical collar based upon individual anthropometry (The Align Collar), founded a neurosurgery didactic series (Brain and Spine School), and was awarded the 2016 AANS/CNS joint section award for his research on a spinal trauma classification system. 

Ryan has transitioned from full time clinical medicine to healthcare entrepreneurship & innovation in 2016 when he founded SurgeonIDEAS, LLC aimed at innovating medical education, physician driven performance improvement for health systems, and rapid prototyping. He has worked as an adjunct professor at a health professional cadaver lab, served as the Chief Medical Officer for Surgical Labs, LLC, improved care delivery as healthcare delivery consultant, and has continued to practice medicine traveling with various medical brigades abroad and running a private medicolegal practice that focuses on expert testimony for worker’s compensation and personal injury. 

Ryan has obtained his Executive Master’s in Healthcare Administration (EMHA) from University of Southern California and is a Certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt (CSSBB), concentrating on healthcare performance excellence and efficient care delivery. He will be joining the University of Louisville’s Department of Entrepreneurship in the Fall 2022 to begin his research on healthcare entrepreneurship while also completing a Ph.D. in Innovation.

Ryan is board certified in Disability Medicine, having received special training in the performance of high quality Independent Medical Evaluations by American Board of Independent Medical Examiners (ABIME), received the certification as Certified Independent Medical Examiner (CIME). He has developed numerous medicolegal protocols for long COVID-19 and head injury that are being used across the country and has taught numerous courses to support continuing medical education (CME). 

When the COVID-19 pandemic made it to USA in early 2020, Ryan was a leader in performance excellence and process improvement for Norton Healthcare as the Executive Physician Director of Clinical Effectiveness, helping to establish the COVID Command Center. He played a pivotal role in implementing crisis response strategies to safely deliver healthcare in an uncertain time. His subject matter expertise as both a physician and process improvement expert allowed him to integrate the ever-changing literature, research, and guidelines into action plans for frontline workers. He additionally co-founded Norton’s Way to Wellbeing Resilience Program for healthcare workers to combat the psychological stress due to the pandemic. He continues to serve as an executive consultant.

When not at work, Ryan is interested in philosophy, cooking, health and wellness, traveling, surfing, and Newfoundland dogs.

Brad Pendley '87| B.S. Chemistry 

Private Physician at Internal Medicine, Affiliate Professor of Biomedical Engineering at The University of Memphis

Dr. Brad Pendley graduated from Eckerd College in 1987 with a B.S. in Chemistry after transferring to Eckerd in 1985 from St. Petersburg Junior College. He was a non-residential student as he was married and had a son. While at Eckerd, he was a squadron commander in Civil Air Patrol and was a co-campaign manager for Representative Lars Hafner.

After graduating from Eckerd, he attended Cornell University where he earned his Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry in 1992. His dissertation involved several aspects of electrochemistry including inventing a technique to construct nanometer-sized electrodes that was patented by Cornell.

After graduation from Cornell, he pursued his passion to teach chemistry at Rhodes College in Memphis, TN, where he taught a variety of chemistry classes including general, analytical and physical chemistry as well as a course on the Art and Science of Early Italian Renaissance Painting. In 1998 while on sabbatical leave in Biomedical Engineering at The University of Memphis, he began to apply his knowledge to design sensor technology to solve medical problems. However, his background in the physical sciences did not allow him to adequately understand, formulate and solve such problems so, being a lifelong learner, he recognized his need for additional education. After turning down being a Dean at Rhodes, he resigned his tenured, endowed position and completed medical school and then residency while still having some teaching and research responsibilities at The University of Memphis. 

After residency, he practiced medicine full-time and began teaching as an Affiliate Professor in Biomedical Engineering at The University of Memphis, where he has been for more than a decade. His research involves developing sensor technologies for use in medicine and he has served on the graduate committees of nearly two dozen students, several of whom went on to complete the M.D. degree in addition to their graduate degree. He has published widely and speaks on sensor technologies internationally. In addition to this professional work, he also has served on the Board of Directors of two not for profit corporations.

Jane A Petro '68, MD, FACS, FAACS | B.A. Biology

Professor of Surgery, Emerita at New York Medical College

Jane Petro is a retired Author, Historian, Sailboat Captain and Gardener Chef.  She graduated from Eckerd in 1968, majoring in Biology and minored in Philosophy, and sailing. She applied to Penn State University, Hershey Medical School, mostly on a dare, and got accepted. Her career was frequently determined by accidents of fate, but she completed a general surgery residency, a plastic surgery residency (also at Hershey) and fellowships in Burn Care and in Microsurgery at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine.  In 1980 Jane moved out of New York City to Westchester County where she assisted in establishing the Burn Center at the Westchester Medical Center, and became a member of the faculty of New York Medical College. Having attended both a new college and a new medical school, NYMC was one of the oldest medical schools in the US, but had recently moved to a new campus in Valhalla NY.  

During the next 20 years she advanced to Full Professor of Surgery, and founded a Microsurgery Reconstruction program and a Pediatric Craniofacial Program at the hospital.  When Jane became exhausted by the continuous trauma call of the University system, she left and entered private practice with a multispecialty Breast Cancer and Plastic Surgery program, where she happily did reconstructive and cosmetic surgery for the next 9 years, retiring from clinical practice in 2009. Read more about Jane's journey here.


Part of the reason for leaving academic medicine was the desire to travel and sail more. Though the academic career had permitted regular annual medical mission trips to Africa and South America there was little support for non-medical travel, so in my new position Jane was able to begin exploring the high seas, doing sail boat deliveries up and down the coast of the US and even bringing a 54’ boat from Panama to Tahiti, taking 3 months. She moved to Boston at the time she retired and since then have become an amateur historian, publishing and lecturing on 19th century women physicians, health care practices involving medico-legal consulting and issues surrounding the LGBTQI+ community. 

Jane loves sailing, gardening, reading and writing, theater, music and travel, and has had the privilege of indulging all of these interests for the past 13 years.  Teaching during Winter Term at Eckerd has been a rewarding and meaningful engagement with the Eckerd Community.

Ilene Robeck | MD  from SUNY Buffalo Medical School

Retired MD, Previous Director of Virtual Pain Education

Ilene Robeck received her BA in English from SUNY at Buffalo and received her MD from SUNY at Buffalo Medical School. She did her internal medicine residency at Georgetown University. She was Chief Medical Resident at Fairfax Hospital, a Georgetown University affiliated tertiary care center from 1980-1981. 

She taught internal medicine on the Georgetown University Medical Service at DC General Hospital from 1981 to 1982. She was Medical Director and following that she was the Education Director of Comprehensive Addiction Treatment Services from 1982-1992. She became board certified in addiction medicine in 1990. She launched  an internal medicine private practice and also did consultative work in pain management and addiction medicine from 1985-2007. 

She began working at the James A. Haley VA Hospital in Tampa in 2007 and established and was section chief of the post deployment primary care clinic and a high risk chronic pain clinic embedded in primary care for patients with co morbid pain with addiction and/or psychiatric problems and/or complex medical problems.  In 2010 she became Chair of the National VA Primary Care Pain Champions Initiative. 

In 2010 she transferred to the Bay Pines VA Health Care System. While at the Bay Pines VA she developed an eConsult program doing electronic consulting for patients with chronic pain and an educational program geared for primary care and mental health providers. 

In 2013 she became director of virtual pain care for the Richmond VAMC. In this capacity, she produced two case-based webinar  programs  each week, did  econsults and saw patients throughout the country using clinical video teleconsulting. 

Throughout her career she has lectured and written on topics such as pain management, mental health concerns  in the primary care setting, the high risk chronic pain patient, and addiction diagnosis/treatment. Once joining the VA she also wrote and lectured about post deployment concerns in the returning veteran.  She has been on the faculty and lectured for the American Society of Addiction Medicine annual course on pain and addiction. She is the lead editor for the ASAM Manual on Pain and Addiction. 

Since retiring from the VA she continues as an educational consultant for the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center putting together twice monthly webinars on pain as well as addiction. Upon her retirement from the VA she has become more active in multiple community organizations including ASPEC, The St. Petersburg Free Clinic, and the League of Women Voters. 


Johnny V. Boykins ’08 | B.A. Political Science, Communications

Regional Director of Operations, Southeastern US at PalAmerican Security

Johnny Boykins graduated from Eckerd in 2008, where he studied political science and communications with a minor in international relations and global affairs. As a student, he was involved in ECOS, Omicron Delta Kappa, Eckerd College Young Democrats, and was a Wittner Family Scholar, Take Stock in Children Scholar, and Doorways Scholar. 

Johnny went on to obtain an M.A. in Security Studies and Diplomacy from Norwich University. While a student and after graduating from Eckerd, he worked in maritime enforcement for the United States Coast Guard Reserves. He has been with PalAmerican Security since 2016, currently serving as the regional director of operations for the Southeastern U.S. 

Johnny volunteers with many local organizations including but not limited to the Pinellas Education Foundation, the Better Future Project, St. Petersburg College, Car Free St. Pete Committee.

Laetitia Boyle ’06 | B.A. International Business

Senior Vice President, Sales, Education & Engagement  at Raymond James 

Laetitia Boyle graduated in 2006 from Eckerd College with a degree in International Business and a minor in Mandarin Chinese. While attending Eckerd, Laetitia traveled to Southeast Asia and Morocco on separate Winter Term trips to learn about the nuances of finance and commerce against the backdrop of other cultures. She also met her future husband on the trip to Asia, fellow Eckerd alum Ben Boyle. These important tenets have stayed with Laetitia as she has risen from intern to department leader at Raymond James Bank.

Her first official role at Raymond James was in the Accelerated Development Program (previously known as Options Rotational Development Program), completing a year-long training before transitioning into Corporate & Commercial Real Estate Banking. In 2011, she was given an opportunity to build out the new Securities Based Lending department, implementing the overall business strategy and growing it to over $2 billion in loan balances. Currently, she is Head of Sales, Education & Engagement for Private Client Banking, which offers cash and lending solutions to Raymond James' 8,700+ financial advisors.

Laetitia is the executive sponsor for Raymond James Bank & Trust's Diversity and Inclusion Council and a member of the Eckerd College National Advisory Council. She is a graduate of the Securities Industry Institute at Wharton and attended Developing Black Leaders in Financial Services at Columbia University. She is also a recipient of the Tampa Bay Business Journal’s 40 under 40 recognition in 2021. Laetitia is also a board member for Ronald McDonald House Charities of Tampa Bay and an active volunteer for Lasagna Love, which helps to tackle food insecurity. Outside of work Laetitia and her husband Ben have two children and love to play golf when they can.

Candis Carmichael ‘03  | B.A. International Business, Spanish 

Real Estate Advisor, ABR, PSA, C2EX, e-PRO, AHWD, CSA at Charles Rutenberg Realty

Candis Carmichael graduated from Eckerd with a double major in International Business and Spanish (and one credit shy of a minor in Classics). She was one of three students in the Class of 2003 granted early admission during the application cycle. Originally from Chicago, Candis started her academic path as a Biology major with an ultimate goal of becoming a veterinarian. After a self-guided independent study shadowing a veterinarian, her path (and major) transitioned to International Business, focusing on entrepreneurship and marketing. 

While at Eckerd, Candis spent one year working at the Waterfront, two years an assistant in the International Business department, three years as editor for Arts & Entertainment/Lifestyles section for The Triton (the student newspaper at that time), and one year as the photography editor for the yearbook. She also participated in Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) and volunteered at both Creative Clay and Enterprise Village at the Stavros Institute.

After a 15-year career in business-to-business (B2B) marketing ranging from media buying for national brands like Ideal Image to experiential marketing initiatives at Cannes Lions Festival and CES for companies like eBay, Candis has shifted her focus back to the family business of residential real estate to have a more direct impact on her community and neighbors. This current adventure has kept her in Pinellas County, where she still lives. 

The common thread through Candis' career has been unrivaled customer service, strong communication, extensive organization skills, and a desire to teach in order to elevate those around her.

Elizabeth Coffey ‘98  | B.A. International Business

Founder, CEO at Proverbia, LLC

Elizabeth graduated from Eckerd in 1998 with a B.A. in International Business. While at Eckerd she was on the tennis team and was a very avid student in the study abroad program, where she spent a semester in London. After Eckerd, she went on to get her MBA from Brenau University. 

Elizabeth has 25+ years of experience of her career across multiple industries, always sitting at the intersection of business and technology. Elizabeth has worked with management consultancy Accenture, tackling operational and strategic challenges facing the nation’s top Banking and Brokerage companies. At Cox Communications, she ran the delivery and strategy enablement across Enterprise Dev & Ops governing 3500+ resources (FTE/contractor) and $500+M in budget, $100M+ complex programs, implemented enterprise process standardization, and owned development of customer facing applications/platforms. Elizabeth designed and built an organization that focuses on maximizing business value with financial platform enablement across Cox Enterprises, Cox Communications, and Cox Automotive. Revolutionizing the culture, delivery, and technology eco-system to empower the business with scalability and agility. Driving a culture of belonging, utilizing a DevOps methodology, and serving as a trusted advisor to customers in order to cultivate innovation and achieve business outcomes. 

Elizabeth reached the executive ranks by age 40. She thrives in complex, ever changing environments with the ability to bring harmony across diverse subjects and personalities while ensuring the success of the overall organization. She is a strategic thinker, execution expert, team motivator and change inspirator through collaboration and leadership. Elizabeth has a strong understanding of strategy, business operations, and technology enablement.  

When not working on her own company, Elizabeth is working on TechStars startup accelerator, Start Up Runway startup accelerator and Junior League of Atlanta. Outside of work she participates in competitive tennis. 

Brandon Cooke ‘11  | B.A. Business Administration

IT Compliance Senior Manager at Raymond James

Originally from beautiful, Narragansett, RI, Brandon Cooke graduated from Eckerd in 2011 with a degree in Business Administration. While attending Eckerd, Brandon was active with the Eckerd College Homeless Outreach (ECHO), Men’s Rugby Club, Eckerd College Organization of Students (ECOS), intramurals, and spent many afternoons fishing out in Tampa Bay. His fondest memories of Eckerd are of the community and the service learning opportunities. These experiences are fundamental to who he has become and how he approaches his career and the community he lives in.


After graduation from Eckerd, he briefly worked at Capital One and started with Raymond James’ Customer Accounts team in 2012. Over the next few years he obtained his series 7, 24, and 66 licenses and worked with various compliance and supervision teams. These roles helped him develop a strong understanding of the regulatory environment that governs the financial services industry and how that impacts Raymond James’ business units.  In 2020, he transitioned out of brokerage and into Information Technology Compliance, supporting the Raymond James Privacy office and Information Technology teams with a focus on information compliance and risk management. He has since obtained his CIPP/US and continues to grow in this area of emerging risk.


Brandon continues to live in St. Petersburg and stays busy with the Pinellas County School Lunch Pals program, enjoying the many beaches and museums, and birding throughout Florida’s many parks and preserves.  

Kyle Daquanna '10 | B.A. Business

Director of Strategic Channels at Cleo; Founder of Flamingo Photographers

Kyle Daquanna majored in Business with a minor in Economics while at Eckerd. He was a member of the Eckerd College Baseball team and an avid member of the waterfront and first ever Eckerd Fishing Club. 

When Kyle graduated in 2010, the economy was in the midst of a financial collapse with the housing market leading the charge. His passion for economics took him into banking where he was a Personal Banker with the Bank of America. After two years, Kyle was the top #1 of Bankers in the Southeast Region. He was promoted to Business Banker of St. Pete where he worked with small business owners on accessing credit and helping with their day to day financial operations. It was during this time that he recognized his passion to help small business owners. In 2014, he took a position with TriNet as a Small Business Consultant. As the #1 rep in the company after his first year, Kyle took his talents into leadership where he later led a team of 12 consultants to President’s club. This heroic milestone was the first time TriNet had ever had this happen in their 33 year history! 

In November of 2020, Kyle decided to step away from the workforce to spend time with his two sons. When he returned (after a 7 month sabbatical), he joined a health-tech startup (Cleo) where he was tasked with building out their sales process and sales team. After 18 months with Cleo, he now leads their strategic channels where he works alongside the C-suite on strategy and maximizing sales efficiencies. Kyle is a passionate sales leader who has a successful track record of building and motivating teams to see their full potential!

In addition to leading sales teams, Kyle’s entrepreneurial mind has led him to start up several companies - one of which (most recently) is Flamingo Photographers. His passion for Florida’s wildlife and remarkable scenery combined with his creativity makes for a great combination to lead a team of photographers at Flamingo Photography. 

Outside of work, Kyle is a single dad of two boys who are 7 and 5. They love to go fishing, paddle boarding, hiking and finding the most exclusive parts of Florida’s wildlife that there is to explore. He also volunteers his time with his church, Tampa Bay Watch and Big Brothers Big Sisters of America. 

Caitlin Duffy '13 | B.A. Creative Writing

Senior Social Strategist at Tyler Mount Ventures

Caitlin Duffy graduated from Eckerd College in 2013 with a B.A. in Creative Writing. While at Eckerd, Caitlin was on The Current working on multiple sections. She was invited to sit on multiple student panels to interview new potential faculty (Communication, Creative Writing and Literature) and candidates for the position of Associate Dean of Faculty. During her Senior year, she participated in the search for the commencement speaker for the Class of 2013, which selected writer and environmental activist Bill McKibben.

While Caitlin studied Creative Writing, her day-to-day work actually leverages data analysis more heavily than her copywriting skills. She started her career in automotive journalism, moved to the social media realm when she was hired by Upworthy and assisted with the 2016 election coverage there. Caitlin then went to another publication, NationSwell, where she went even deeper into understanding analytics and database construction, as well as learning the ins and outs of content marketing strategies and live event production. After NationSwell, she joined, an EdTech startup founded by the CoFounder of Masterclass, as Paid Acquisition Manager and dove deep into paid performance marketing for a time. Since early 2021, Caitlin has been going between working for agencies and freelancing, and am currently helping build Tyler Mount Ventures, a new company with an anti-agency approach to digital marketing services. 

Outside of work, Caitlin is currently organizing a scholarship and fundraiser at the local community college in memory of a high school friend that went there. Other free-time activities include culinary exploration, nail art, needlepoint and travel.

Grace Gair ’08 | B.A. Anthropology and International Relations 

Director, Technology & Cyber Risk Officer at Capital One

Grace Gair graduated from Eckerd in 2008 with a double major in Anthropology and International Relations. While at Eckerd, Grace was an avid member of ECOS being apart of the Student Senate, VP Academic Affairs and President. She also was a Ford Scholar, RA, and an Ethics Bowl participant. Grace was also inducted into Phi Beta Kappa.

Following graduation, Grace received a Fulbright scholarship to South Korea, where she taught English. Grace then spent three years in Berlin, Germany, where she completed her Master's degree in Public Policy and worked as a consultant. 

Grace is currently Director, Technology & Cyber Risk Officer at Capital One, where she helps the Bank assess and manage risk associated with new commercialization efforts. Prior to starting this role, Grace worked with a variety of public and private sector organizations on identifying, assessing and managing cyber and operational risks. In particular, she has specialized in helping companies adopt new methodologies for quantifying and communicating risk to non-technical stakeholders.  

Doreen Galli ’89 | B.S. Business, Computer Science, and Mathematics

TA/CTO for Global Expansion & Transformation (GTE) at Microsoft

Doreen Galli attended Eckerd College from 1985-1989 and graduated with the Highest Honors. Her majors were Business, Computer Science and Mathematics. She was a GTE-CoSIDA All American Cross Country runner and was active in 17 clubs and committees.

Throughout Dr. Galli's career, she has served as a director and/or C-Level executive for IBM, DHL, Dell, AT&T and Gartner, to name a few. Dr. Galli has also been trained as a professional speaker, and she has been invited to speak at distinguished venues such as the Forbes Executive Summit, CIO Summit, CIO Academy, Network+ Interop Las Vegas & Atlanta, The Internet Security Conference, WITI Conference, Grace Hopper, Strategic Analytics Summit, CES WITI Innovation Panel, and Gartner’s Catalyst Conference.

Fern Johnson '05| B.S. Business Administration and Management

Founder, CEO at Career Sisters, LLC

Fern Johnson is a native of Fort Lauderdale, Florida. She graduated from Eckerd as a PEL student and majored in Business Administration and Management that had a finance focus. She went on to earn her MBA from the Keller Graduate School of Management at Devry University. Fern is the first of her eight siblings to graduate from college.

Fern has over 22 years of accounting and financial management experience in both for-profit and nonprofit organizations. In 2018, Fern successfully launched Career Sisters, a business located in Peachtree Corners, Georgia that focuses on the empowerment, career advancement and business development of women of color. Fern is a passionate leader who firmly believes that “Empowered Women, Empower Communities.” She is an accomplished executive, speaker, former adjunct instructor, business owner, and published author. She is the diversity advisor for progressive developers in the Metro Atlanta area looking to increase minority business within their live work communities.

Fern’s greatest joy is her family and it’s where she receives her strength. She resides in Johns Creek, Georgia with her husband  and their four children. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, traveling and spending time with her family.

John Meiners '84 | B.A. Business Management

Chief of Mission Aligned Businesses and Healthcare Solutions at American Heart Association - National Center

John Meiners started Eckerd as a Chemistry major and halfway through his junior year he realized that he liked his elective courses of Economics, Business, and Political Science far more than Organic Chemistry, Physics, and Calculus. So he changed his major to Business Management and took some summer courses to graduate on time. This was among the best decisions he ever made and set him up for the most satisfying career he could have ever imagined. 

John was very involved in the waterfront program and specifically EC-SAR…it was a key reason he decided to come to Eckerd. Having become a certified SCUBA diver at age 15,  EC-SAR was just beginning to form a dive rescue program following the Sunshine Skyway disaster. He started as a trainee “pube” but eventually did most everything. Divemaster, Boat Captain, EMT, Sar Coordinator.  My work study was working on the waterfront boats, teaching sailing and skiing in the summers.  Not much time for other things being “On Duty” 50% of the time.

After graduation, John worked at the Eckerd College Waterfront Program securing donated boats and helping manage EC-SAR. Eventually John knew it was time to leave and landed a role with Dale Carnegie Training Systems in Tampa. Within a few months, he was promoted to sales manager and opened a new office and territory in Pinellas County. After a few successful years selling and teaching, a colleague mentioned the American Heart Association (AHA) was looking for someone with fundraising and sales experience to lead their St. Petersburg chapter. It sounded interesting to him and 32 years later John is still with AHA. He has had many positions with AHA over the years in fundraising, volunteer management, multi-state region management and national consulting, however the role he has now is his favorite. Over the last 12 years John has had the privilege to create new lines of business in Healthcare Quality and Professional Education that have grown to $350m in revenue each year for the AHA’s life saving mission. 

In addition, these businesses train more than 22 million people, in 104 countries, and save countless lives each year. Among the business areas he leads are Emergency Cardiovascular Care, Hospital Quality and Certification, Resuscitation Quality Improvement (RQI) Partners, the Center for Health Teach and Innovation, and is now the president of Healthcare Quality and Research Systems (a global subsidiary of AHA). 

Outside of work, John still loves to sail, boat and dive whenever he can. He has spent a lot of time boating on the Great Lakes when he worked from Ohio and later the Chesapeake Bay for a couple summers. More recently he has started track racing his AMG GTS.

Allyson Porter '82 | B.A. Economics 

Managing Partner, Emeritus, at Keika Ventures

Allyson Porter graduated from Eckerd College in 1982 with a degree in Economics. She also has a masters in International Management. 

Allyson started her career in the mid ‘80s as an economic analyst in appropriate technologies/alternative energy and transitioned to environmental impact assessments, development management plans and evaluating sustainable development projects. By the early 90s, her career track was more focused on the environmental industry, where she headed up international sales and marketing for an environmental laboratory specializing in dioxin analysis. 

In 1997, Allyson envisioned a more efficient mechanism for her environmental clients and co-founded a company that connected domestic and international clients requiring environmental products/services with the best suppliers of those products/services. This company, with the assistance of more than $19 million in venture funding, created the first business-to-business (B2B) marketplace for environmental products and services, which later transitioned into B2B environmental, health and safety software applications. Realizing that B2B might be perfect for the “General Motors” of the world, many international clients actually preferred the hand-holding and general sharing of information that comes from one-on-one interaction. This combined with wanting to get back into understanding her clients specific project needs as they relate to their country's environmental regulations, Allyson and her partners established KeikaVentures, LLC, an environmental consulting company based in North Carolina. Allyson retired from Keika Ventures in September 2021 after 20 years as the Managing Director; however during her free time she has started two different companies. 

Allyson has most recently returned to the United States after living 10 years in South America. Her free time is spent attempting to make the desert Southwest green (again).

Sarah Sieloff ’06 | B.A. International Relations, Spanish

Senior Planner at Maul Foster & Alongi, Inc.

Sarah Sieloff graduated from Eckerd in 2006 with a B.A. in International Studies and Spanish.  

After Sarah graduated from Eckerd, she taught English in Thailand as a Fulbright scholar for a year, and returned to Seattle, where she worked with people experiencing homelessness. She went to India to work for an ambulance service, then graduate school where she earned a Master of Public affairs. Sarah was very focused on international development, and after graduating, she worked for the US agency for international development in Washington DC for a little over a year, then switch to the to the domestic side of things and went to work for the Department of Housing and Urban Development in Memphis, serving as the team lead for the White House Council on Strong Cities, Strong Communities. Sarah spent almost 4 years with the federal government before joining the Center for Creative Land Recycling as its executive director, where she served for five years. She then went to Japan for about 15 months as a Council on Foreign Relations-Hitachi Fellow, where she researched how Japanese cities are responding to population decline.  After many years away, Sarah is very happy to return to the Pacific NW, where she grew up, and works mostly with local governments as a planner at Maul Foster and Alongi, an interdisciplinary environmental consulting firm. 

Outside of work, Sarah studies Japanese, writes a Substack newsletter that builds on the research she did in Japan, and volunteers with a local dog rescue. She would like to get back into volunteer tutoring, especially adult literacy tutoring, which she did when she lived in Memphis and found it to be incredibly valuable and inspiring. She would also like to get back into a band one day.

Liz Tomaselli ’13 | B.A. Political Science 

Executive Communications at PepsiCo

Liz Tomaselli graduated from Eckerd college in 2013 with a B.A. in Political Science and Journalism. As a student, she co-founded the Eckerd College chapter of Her Campus, the national online magazine, and was the editor-in-chief of the award-winning student newspaper The Current

Liz has spent nearly a decade in the communications field, managing media relations and providing strategic communications counsel to Cabinet officials, senior U.S. government leaders, and C-Suite executives. At PepsiCo, she works on internal and external communications for the company’s senior executives, including drafting speeches, op-eds, and talking points.

She previously served as a U.S. Government spokesperson across multiple administrations for the State Department and the White House, where she worked daily with domestic and international media, prepared senior U.S. officials for media interviews and Congressional testimony, and developed strategic communications plans for a range of complex national security and foreign policy issues.

In her free time, Liz is a Junior League volunteer, barre class enthusiast, cappuccino consumer, shoe collector, and an optimistic New York Mets fan.

Caroline Weatherill ’11 | B.A. International Business

Senior Vice President, Global HR Program Manager at Bank of America

Caroline Weatherill graduated from Eckerd in 2011 with a major in International Business and minors in Spanish and Psychology. While at Eckerd, Caroline spent time as the Director of the Student Community Standards Board, interned at a local marketing consulting group, studied abroad in London, England, and Athens, Greece, as well as participated in Spring Break Service Trips to Lima, Peru and St. John, USVI. After graduation, Caroline spent three years as an Admission Counselor at Eckerd and then went on to obtain her MBA from Simmons University in Boston, MA. 

Following business school, Caroline joined Bank of America’s Leadership Development Program and has held roles across consumer banking, including managing a market of 27 financial centers, strategic operational enhancement design, and digital product adoption strategy. Caroline is currently a Senior Vice President Program Manager within Global Human Resources, leading enterprise-wide program initiatives to support Bank of America’s 300,000 employees and contractors. Caroline resides in Portland, Maine and spends most of her free time spoiling her dog, Mavis. 

Sofia Zrioka ’11 | B.A. Global Business, German

North America Regional Marketing Manager at IDEXX

Sofia Zrioka graduated from Eckerd in 2011 with a major in Global Business and minor in German. While at Eckerd, Sofia studied abroad doing several independent studies in Denmark, Sweden and Greece and found her passion in the relationship building aspect of business and commercial marketing.

Following graduation from Eckerd, Sofia moved back to Maine and started working at IDEXX Laboratories, an international company headquartered in Maine which focuses on developing veterinary diagnostics and testing. For almost 6 years on the Diagnostic Imaging commercial marketing team, Sofia supported all digital radiography hardware and software commercial activities, from the planning, production, and implementation of all educational content to managing the launch of “Lower the Dose” – the first radiation safety campaign for the veterinary market. In 2018, Sofia accepted a position as a Marketing Manager on the Field Marketing Team supporting IDEXX’s sales organization and their in-house analyzer portfolio. In 2020, Sofia became the Regional Marketing Manager for Chemistry, Hematology and Urinalysis for North America where she is responsible for the region’s marketing plans for those 3 franchises including the creation and implementation of sales tools, programs and promotions. Sofia is currently leading a core team for IDEXX’s first global utilization program for customers to trial IDEXX’s innovative SDMA test which evaluates kidney function of cats and dogs. Sofia lives in Bath, Maine with her partner Robert renovating their 1890s home and with their cat Tusse-Lou. They hope to add a pup to the mix soon but in the meantime, Sofia enjoys spending time with family, hiking, and looking forward to her PGL (Personal Growth Leave) from IDEXX as next year will be her 10th year with the company.

Animals / Biology / Marine Science

Melody Chaplin ‘16  | B.S. Marine Science

Fisheries Scientist IV at the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources

Melody Chaplin graduated in 2016 with a B.S. in Marine Science (Biology Track), a B.A. in Psychology, and a minor in Visual Art. Outside of academia, she proved to be a prominent force of the Eckerd Waterfront, working as a Recreation Supervisor, Sailing and Summer Camp Instructor, and as the Senior Marketing Coordinator for the program. In addition to her time as a work scholar, she volunteered as a boat driver and student leader for Eckerd College Search and Rescue team. She also immersed herself in student life at Eckerd, acting as a Resident Advisor and peer resource for the community.

Following graduation, Melody worked for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute as a part of the Crustaceans Research Department. There she participated in the long-term Stone Crab Monitoring project for 3 years, leading weekly scientific field sampling and conducting seasonal observer trips on commercial crabbing vessels through the Gulf Coast. Melody put the skills she learned at the Eckerd College Waterfront to use, acting as the Safety Liaison for her department, conducting boat driving and trailer training courses for new staff, and performing vessel maintenance and repairs.

Melody currently resides in Ocean Springs, MS where she works for the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources (MDMR) as part of the Shrimp and Crab Bureau. Since relocating to MDMR back in 2020, she has become the lead field scientist and primary boat captain for her department, coordinating and executing crustacean and fish research and monitoring throughout the Mississippi Sound and its adjacent tributaries. This new position also allows her to take a more active role in the management and policy side of Mississippi’s Marine Fisheries. Just as with her time spent at FWC, maintaining good communication and positive relations with commercial and recreational stake holders is still the most important part of her job.

Michele Chaky '21 | B.A. Psychology, Animal Studies, French

Associate Zoological Specialist at Seaworld, Wild Arctic

Michele triple majored in Psychology, Animal Studies, and French at Eckerd. She initially started at Eckerd with a plan to major in Psychology with a French minor, but fell more in love with the French language than she could imagine, so she added it as a second major. Halfway through her time at Eckerd, Dr. Highfill launched the new Animal Studies major and she knew she had to add that major as well. At Eckerd, she was a member of the Riptides dance team, French Club, and the Comparative Psychology Club.  She assisted with Dr. Highfill's Comparative Psychology Lab/Dog Cognition Lab  which included presenting research at the CO3 conference in Melbourne, Florida and assisting with other lab projects. Michele loved to travel during her time at Eckerd. She did various Winter Term trips to France, Africa, and London in addition to spending a semester in France - she took as many opportunities as she could to get out and travel. When Michele wasn't in class or at dance practice, she loved spending her Saturdays on Kappa Field and her evenings watching the sunset at the seawall. 

During her time at Eckerd, Michele did various animal internships to prepare for her career in animal training. She was an Animal Training Intern at Audubon Aquarium in New Orleans, Louisiana in the Summer of 2018, Marine Mammal Training Intern at Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park in Fort Walton Beach, Florida in the Summer of 2019, Behavioral Research Intern at ZooTampa in Spring 2019, Animal Care and Training Intern at Dolphin Research Center in Marathon, Florida in Summer 2020 and 2021.  All of these internships gave her various skills that have helped me secure my current job at SeaWorld Orlando. 

After graduating from Eckerd, Michele knew she wanted to travel before settling down, so she moved to Cannes, on the French Riviera, to work as an English Language Assistant with TAPIF. This is a program where you work in France for 8 months in a French school and teach English. She worked in a high school with students aged 14-17. This program was not only a great way to improve her French language abilities, but it also allowed her to share information about English and her life in the United States. 

After her time in France, Michele missed animals and knew she had to get back in the field. She was worried that taking a break from training could be detrimental, but was able to secure a job quickly after returning to the US! Currently, she is an Associate Zoological Specialist at SeaWorld Orlando on the Wild Arctic team. She has the privilege of working with a very unique collection of animals including Beluga Whales, Walruses, and Harbor Seals! On the Wild Arctic team, they combine animal training with good animal welfare and animal care practices to cater to our animal's needs. This includes daily training sessions, husbandry training, and enrichment design. 

Outside of work, Michele likes to spend her free time reading, crocheting, hanging out with her friends, and going to the parks in Orlando.

Chris Flight ’15 | B.S. Marine Science

Professional Development and Aquaculture Education Coordinator at Maryland Sea Grant

Chris Flight graduated in 2015 with a B.S. in Marine Science (Biology Track). He engaged with research early on as a Marine Science First-Year researcher working on pipefish genetics and returned to the program during his junior year as an assistant. An interest in genetics lead him to an undergraduate thesis examining the genetic population structure of his favorite animal, the bonnethead shark. He studied sharks as a Hollings Scholar with the APEX Predators Program at the NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center in Rhode Island. He also brought his love of sharks to the local community by organizing shark themed lessons at local middle schools. Chris participated in the Ford Scholars program, served on the NAS Senate, led campus tours as a Student Ambassador, and spent two years on the EC-SAR team.

Following graduation, Chris began work at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab in Alabama as an environmental education intern. This internship turned into a full-time job where, for 5 years, Chris was paid to take students to the beach, walk through waist deep marsh mud, and identify all the cool critters caught in Mobile Bay. Chris then relocated to Maryland where he now uses his marine science background and love of education to coordinate K-12 aquaculture education for Maryland Sea Grant (MDSG). His responsibilities also include coordinating the professional development activities of the graduate Fellows supported by MDSG funding and assisting with the annual Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program. He enjoys being able to learn from experts in the different MDSG focus areas and is looking for more ways to implement the Think Outside of Eckerd to the programming he develops in Maryland.

Outside of work Chris stays active as a runner, goes paddle boarding and hiking with his family, and is training to be a Maryland Master Naturalist. He also enjoys board games and connecting with his brothers to roll some dice and play Dungeons and Dragons.

Lindsay Jennings ’10 | B.S. Marine Science

Traceability and Counter-IUU Fishing Senior Project Director at FishWise

Lindsay Jennings graduated from Eckerd in 2010 with a major in Marine Science and a minor in Psychology. While at Eckerd, she explored various activities including women’s club soccer, EC-SAR, and a 6-month study abroad in Australia. She also worked as a campus tour guide and teaching assistant. Off campus, she interned with the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary and The Florida Aquarium. 

Following graduation, Lindsay worked with Florida Fish and Wildlife before attending the University of Miami to obtain her Master's of Professional Science (MPS) degree in Marine Affairs and Policy. There, she not only developed field skills in tagging and collecting data for shark research, but found a passion for the intersection of research, policy, and conservation. With this new direction, she took a fellowship in Washington, D.C., where she worked to pass counter-illegal fishing legislation through Congress. She currently is a Senior Project Director for FishWise, a sustainable seafood consultancy based in California. There, she develops programs and innovative ways to leverage the U.S.’s market power to combat illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing, seafood mislabeling, and forced labor abuses. Working via direct supply chain engagement, strategic collaborations, and governance reform, Lindsay works to transform global seafood supply chains not only for the oceans but for the people who depend on them. 

Lindsay lives in St. Petersburg and on days when she isn’t schooling others on what sustainable seafood to purchase, she enjoys eating said seafood, paddle boarding across Florida waters, enjoying the beaches, and adding new countries to her travel bucket list.

Dominique Lazarre  ’06 | B.S. Marine Science, Environmental Studies

Fish Biologist at National Marine Fisheries Service - Southeast Regional Office (NOAA)

Dominique Lazarre graduated from Eckerd College in 2006 with a double major in Marine Science (Biology Track) and Environmental Studies. As a student, Dominique was a mainstay of the Waterfront Program and served as Team Leader for the Eckerd College Search and Rescue Team (EC-SAR). After graduation, she continued working for the Waterfront teaching seamanship and navigational skills.  

Dominique completed a PhD in Marine Biology and Fisheries at the University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences. Her doctoral research focused on understanding the dynamics that allowed for the spread of invasive lionfish in the southeastern US and Caribbean. During this time she accompanied commercial lobster fishermen at sea to evaluate the impact of lionfish on their catch.

After graduate school Dominique's career focus has shifted towards fisheries management, working as a data analyst to support the stock assessment process and fisheries managers in various roles. Dominique spent five years working as an Associate Research Scientist at the Fish and Wildlife Research Institute in St. Petersburg, Florida. She led a data management team that provided fisheries data to state and regional partners for stock assessments that evaluate the health of fisheries in Florida. She recently transitioned to a new position as a Fish Biologist for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administrations, in the National Marine Fisheries Service. She provides analytical support for fisheries managers that set regulations for federal fish stocks in the Gulf of Mexico, Southeast United States, and Caribbean. Dominique also has experience working in academia. She was previously an adjunct professor for the Department of Biological Sciences at University of South Florida St. Petersburg and a visiting professor in Environmental Studies at Eckerd College.

Kirby Parnell '16 | B.S. Marine Science

PhD Candidate, Marine Mammal Research Program, University of Hawaiʻi Mānoa 

Kirby Parnell graduated from Eckerd in 2016 with a B.S. in Marine Science (Biology) and a minor in Environmental Studies. She was introduced to bioacoustics and marine mammal research by Dr. Peter Simmard and Shannon Gowans her senior year and completed a research project on the spatial relationship between dolphin calves and ambient noise levels in Boca Ciega Bay. Kirby played centerfield on the fastpitch softball team for three years and was selected as an All-American Scholar-Athlete by the National Fast-Pitch Coaches Association in 2012 and 2013, and received an Academic Achievement Award by the Division II Athletic Director's Association in 2013. When she wasn't playing softball or studying at the library, Kirby could be found wakeboarding or hanging out on Kappa Field.


After graduating from Eckerd, Kirby moved to California to begin her M.S. in Ocean Sciences at the University of California Santa Cruz (UCSC) in the Pinniped Cognition and Sensory Systems Laboratory. It was there that she was introduced to pinnipeds (seals, sea lions, and walruses) and ongoing research on the sensory systems of these amphibious marine mammals. Her M.S. thesis was the first scientific publication to describe the underwater vocalizations of the endangered Hawaiian monk seal. After graduating from UCSC in 2018, Kirby moved to Odense, Denmark to complete a Fulbright Research/Study Grant on the acoustic and reproductive behaviors of harbor seals using a combination of drones and passive acoustic recorders. 

Her foundational research on Hawaiian monk seal vocal behavior led to a PhD opportunity at the University of Hawaiʻi Mānoa in the Marine Biology Graduate Program. Currently, Kirby is a 4th year PhD candidate in the Marine Mammal Research Program studying -- you guessed it -- Hawaiian monk seal underwater acoustic communication. She works in collaboration with the NOAA's Hawaiian Monk Seal Research Program to better our understanding of monk seal acoustic behavior using passive acoustic monitoring and animal-borne, multi-sensor tags. In addition to her research, she is the co-creator/instructor of the Summer Marine Mammal Intensive Learning Experience (SMMILE) which is a free, one-week course on marine mammals, sanctuaries, and conservation for minority high school students from Hawaiʻi. Kirby is a member of the Cherokee Nation and is a recipient of the Gates Millennium Scholarship; a scholarship funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation that funds 10 years of post-secondary education. She loves exploring the Hawaiian islands, eating fresh poke, observing marine mammals and other wildlife, and playing slowpitch softball.

Liz Price '18, DVM | B.S. Biology, Psychology

Emergency Veterinarian at Fetch Vets

Liz Price attended Eckerd College from 2014-2018. While at Eckerd she double majored in Biology and Psychology with a minor in both Chemistry and Spanish. She was an EMT with EC-ERT and acted as shift leader and a training coordinator during her four years. When Liz entered Eckerd, she had a love for marine mammals, specifically rescue and rehabilitation (still does!). For four years, she was a volunteer for the marine mammal pathobiology lab that is on campus where she got to participate in necropsies of dolphins/whales/sharks/lots of manatees and in rescue operations alongside SeaWorld and Clearwater Marine Aquarium (CMA). 

Over the summers, she interned with CMA as a rescue intern and then down in the Florida Keys with Dolphins Plus as a Veterinary Extern. At the time, she knew she wanted to work with marine mammals but wasn't sure in what capacity or role that would be. During her time with CMA, she had the opportunity to work with the veterinarians of SeaWorld and that's when she knew she wanted to pursue veterinary medicine. When she was at Eckerd, there wasn't too much focus on pre-vet in the pre-health club, so she decided to spearhead this but make it more inclusive. The EC Animal Careers Club was born. Her goal was to bring together the pre-vet students as well as those that were interested in careers with animals from conservation to behavior. They provided lectures and labs over the next couple of years. They even had the opportunity to attend two American Pre-Vet Medical Association (APVMA) conferences. During her senior year Liz became the secretary for the APVMA, a national organization for all of the pre-vet clubs in the United States and Puerto Rico.

Starting the summer of her junior year, Liz started the grueling application process for vet school. She applied to six schools and was accepted to Purdue University's College of Veterinary Medicine in Indiana. During the summers, she externed at the Palm Beach Veterinary Specialist in their surgery and emergency department. This is where she really fell in love with emergency veterinary medicine. She always loved emergency medicine from being an EMT but didn't have much experience with veterinary ER. During her clinical year of vet school, she did externships with the Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta and the Navy's Marine Mammal Program in San Diego. Currently, Liz is an Emergency Veterinarian for Fetch Vets in Brandon. Her goal is to continue to pursue marine mammal medicine as she obtains more clinical experience.

When Liz am not working, she enjoys bodybuilding/powerlifting, exploring St. Pete, being on the water as much as she can, and spending time with friends.

Derek Sawyer '02 | B.S. Marine Science

Professor at The Ohio State University

Growing up on an island in Maine, Derek had a deep interest in Marine Science from an early age. He knew that he wanted to go to college to study and ultimately become a research scientist or professor. This dream had hurdles being a first-generation student from a low-income family. With the help of mentors and life-long friends that he met at Eckerd, his decision to go to an out-of-state school was a beneficial one. Derek Sawyer graduated from Eckerd in 2002 with a B.S. in Marine Science focused on Marine Geology. Originally, he was planning a focus on Marine Biology but ultimately switched after taking Oceanography 101 during his first year with Dr. Dave Duncan. In this course, he was introduced to the exciting natural phenomena that exist on, and beneath, the seafloor, as well as the career opportunities within geology and geophysics. While at Eckerd, Derek was a student worker at the Waterfront, a student research assistant in the Marine Geology program with Professor Gregg Brooks, and participated in intramural sports (ultimate frisbee and basketball). 

After Eckerd, Derek went to graduate school at Penn State University for his masters degree and then to the University of Texas at Austin for his PhD. After his PhD, Derek worked as an exploration geologist for ExxonMobil for two years and then fortunately got a faculty position at the University of Kentucky for two years. In 2014, he accepted his current position at The Ohio State University and has been there ever since. Derek loves his job! He gets to teach classes to both undergraduate and graduate students, advises students on thesis projects (he has had 2 Eckerd College grads join his group for graduate studies) and gets to do research. Derek’s research is a combination of marine expeditions and other field work, computational work on geophysical data, and hands-on work in his lab on sediment cores. Derek has just returned to the states after being on sabbatical in the Laboratory of Seafloor and Subseafloor Geological Processes at the Institute of Marine Sciences in Barcelona, Spain. 

Outside of work, Derek loves all kinds of sports (golf, tennis, basketball, baseball) and loves to travel. He also has three young daughters who keep him very busy.


William "Patrick" Clough '97| B.A. International Studies

Japanese Language Specialist at the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)

Patrick graduated from Eckerd in 1997 with a B.A. in Psychology; however Patrick has always had a passion for Japanese language and culture ever since his family was stationed in Okinawa, Japan during 5th - 7th grade. While at Eckerd, Patrick created a concentration major in Japanese Area Studies using the East Asian Area Studies major as a foundation and added more courses specific to Japan. This included several independent studies under the mentorship of the Japanese professor.  

Immediately after graduation, Patrick moved up the road to Orlando and worked for a local translation and interpreting company called International Planning, Incorporated. At the time they had the account for the second largest tour company in Japan, Kintetsu International.  Patrick worked there in the tour operations section for around two and a half years before stumbling upon a notice that the FBI was hiring linguists. After taking the tests on a whim and the rest is history. The bulk of Patrick's work is comprised of translation, interpreting, cultural research, and brokering communications between FBI personnel and international partners.

Patrick is very active these days raising his kids and being as involved in their lives as possible. These days that means shuttling them to and from extracurricular activities and sometimes traveling with them to meets and competitions. He is also active in his church and spends a lot of time doing community service work.  In the spaces between all the activity listening to music of all kinds, reading a wide variety of fiction and non-fiction, learning new home improvement and other skills by watching YouTube videos, and playing games of all kinds (board, computer, console, etc.) is what you can find Patrick doing.

Laura Goodloe ’04 | B.A. Political Science 

Partner Attorney at Puchalski Goodloe LLC

Laura Goodloe’s love for Florida and the outdoors drew her to Eckerd College in 2000. Majoring in Political Science and minoring in International Relations, Laura fostered numerous relationships with faculty, staff, and fellow students on campus. During her college career, Laura took the opportunity to participate in various independent studies and was fortunate enough to travel to Geneva, Switzerland, for a Spring Into Summer program focused on international relations and non-governmental organizations. Upon graduation in 2004, Laura went on to receive her J.D. from Stetson University College of Law. During law school, Laura interned as a clerk for Florida’s Twelfth Judicial Circuit Court and worked as a law clerk for a reputable law firm in Bradenton, Florida. Laura returned to Chicago in 2007 to intern with the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.

Laura is a founding partner of Puchalski Goodloe, LLC. Laura’s practice focuses on police and fire pension law as well immigration law. Her expertise not only covers proper administration and oversight of hundred-million-dollar pension funds throughout the state, but also administrative adjudications and circuit and appellate court review. Laura's immigration law practice focuses primarily on representing professional athletes in the NHL and AHL. 

Laura is admitted to practice before the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals and the United States District Court for Illinois. She has argued numerous cases before Illinois’ State and Appellate Courts, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, and the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Laura is married to her law partner Jeff, is an avid equestrian who has competed on a national level, and has two Bernese mountain dogs named Finn and Ferris.

Abigail Gustafson ’10 | B.S. Business Administration

Contracting Officer at The State Department

Abigail Gustafson graduated from Eckerd with a Bachelors of Science in Business Administration and a Minor in Spanish. She also has a Masters of Science in International Policy from Kennesaw State University. While at Eckerd she was a member of Palmetto Productions, active in Campus Activities, a lifeguard at the Eckerd pool, ESL Conversation Partner, and member of the Multi-Cultural Dance Club. She studied abroad in Puebla, Mexico for a semester and participated in a Spring Break Service Trip to Biloxi, Mississippi. 

After Eckerd, Abigail moved back to Maine to work for a software company before becoming a Peace Corps volunteer in Jamaica. Following her time in Jamaica, she moved to Nairobi, Kenya for two years where she worked as a Financial Controller for a Danish agricultural processing equipment company. In 2016, she landed an internship with the State Department Bureau of Populations, Refugees, and Migration (PRM) in Washington, D.C.. Following her internship, she worked in the Comptroller’s Office for PRM, then later moved into a role at the Pentagon consulting on a project for the Navy. After taking some time off from the government to manage the D.C. office of WildLifeDirect, a Kenyan-based animal conservation NGO, she went back to work for the State Department in 2019 and has been there ever since. Currently, Abigail is a Contracting Officer managing multiple contracts in high-threat environments. 

Outside of work Abigail enjoys hiking, yoga, doing activities with her dog, reading, traveling and ceramics.

Joann Lockard | B.A. International Affairs

Deputy Chief of Mission, U.S. Embassy Abidjan/Foreign Service Officer at the U.S. State Department

Joann Lockard is a proud Eckerd parent - her daughter is currently a student. Although Joann did not attend Eckerd, she was very involved with her academic studies. She majored in International Affairs with minors in French and History in 1996, which she studied for a year abroad in France. Joann joined the Foreign Service in May of 1998 after passing entrance exams a year earlier. To join the Foreign Service, applicants must take a series of exams that can last a year or more. Joann's course work in history, economics, political science, and foreign languages, as well as writing intensive classes were the most beneficial for preparing her for her career.

The Foreign Service is a career track. Most entrants plan on remaining for a 20-year or longer career, and earn a pension upon retirement. Much of your job training is on-the-job, but international experience, such as in the Peace Corps, as a foreign missionary, working in international business, or any opportunity to live or work overseas will be excellent preparation for the required lifestyle. Foreign Service Officers, like the military, move every 2-3 years for the entirety of their career. Love of travel and engaging foreign publics and governments, as well as excellent communication and interpersonal skills are requirements for this exciting career. As a Public Affairs Officer, which she was for much of her 24-year career, Joann was the public face of our U.S. embassies overseas. She coordinated all of our external communication, including both traditional and social media, as well as engaged frequently with the public, particularly students, talking about the United States and our foreign policy priorities.

Now as Deputy Chief of Mission at our U.S. Embassy in Abidjan, Joann am responsible for over 400 employees and coordinate the activities of nine U.S. government agencies that work in Côte d'Ivoire.  Most of her day-to-day responsibilities focus on internal management of the Embassy and developing our strategy to advance U.S. policy priorities in West Africa. However, when the Ambassador is out of the country, as the number two in the Embassy, she steps into the role of Chargé d'Affaires and am the primary diplomat for the United States in Côte d'Ivoire. 

Outside of work Joann likes to ride horses (when she cans even though she is not very good!), read, and hangout with friends. Joann loves to try new foods in the various countries that she visits. Lastly, of course she loves to travel. 

Environmental Sciences

Graham Ellison '11| B.A. Environmental Studies, Biology

Scientist at The United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA)

Graham graduated Eckerd in 2011 with a double major in Environmental Studies and Biology. As a student, he spent ample time on the water as part of Eckerd College Search and Rescue (EC-SAR), as the Waterfront Boat Captain, or just fishing off the seawall. 

Following graduation, Graham worked with the Department of Natural Resources Blue Crab program in Maryland conducting population research before attending Texas A&M University at Corpus Christi, where he received his Master's in Environmental Science. While working toward his Masters, Graham worked as a Team Leader for the National Spill Control School teaching oil spill response and prevention. He continued to develop his skills for emergency response in the environment while working for Arcadis (Environmental Consulting Firm). He conducted emergency response for train derailments and underground water plume restoration. Graham now works in the Superfund program as a Scientist for the USEPA. 

Outside of work, Graham spends time on the Chesapeake Bay on his 20' bay boat when he is not traveling the world and experiencing new cultures. 

Tessa Foorman '12 | B.A. Biology, Environmental Studies

Executive Coordinator at The Nature Conservancy

Tessa Foorman (McMullen) graduated Eckerd in 2012 with dual B.A.'s in Biology and Environmental Studies and a minor in Coastal Management. As a student at Eckerd, she was a Student Ambassador giving campus tours, started the Field Hockey Club, played her flute in the Wind Ensemble all four years, and became the Director of Pet Council her senior year. Tessa had the opportunity to intern at some pretty rad places including the Marine Mammal Pathobiology Lab, the South Florida Museum with Snooty the manatee (RIP), USGS in St. Petersburg, Tampa Bay Watch, and Colorado Parks and Wildlife. One of her favorite off-campus memories was her Winter Term in Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands.

After college, Tessa found herself on the west coast working in environmental education for NatureBridge and volunteering with the Marine Mammal Center in the Marin Headlands in the Bay Area (San Francisco). This led to a position at WildAid, an environmental nonprofit focusing on demand-reduction for illegal wildlife products, which ultimately inspired her to return to graduate school and travel to Africa for her research. When Tessa headed back to her home state of Colorado, she attended Colorado State University where she received her M.S. in Conservation Leadership. Her research in northern Tanzania looked at local attitudes and perceptions of community-based conservation in Burunge Wildlife Management Area, just outside of Tarangire National Park. 

For the last three years Tessa has been based in Denver, CO working at The Nature Conservancy (TNC). She currently sits on the Global Protect Oceans, Lands and Water team providing project management for both the Ocean Protection and Conservation in Partnership with Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities sub-teams. She previously worked in the Chief Conservation Office (CCO) / Office of the President managing operations and special projects. Tessa was also a Coda Fellow (internal TNC fellowship program) from Oct. 2019 – June 2020 for the Africa team working to support the Strategy Leads to finalize the business plans for three of the region's strategies. For the past 1.5 years she has been active on the Steering Committee of the Young and Emerging Professionals (YEP) Employee Resource Group at TNC, working to leverage the full potential of young and emerging professionals at The Nature Conservancy to ensure conservation success.

Tom Moore '99| B.A. Environmental Studies

Coral Reef Expert, Director at KAUST

Tom Moore graduated from Eckerd with a B.A. in Environmental Studies, focusing on policies with minors in Political Science and Economics. While at Eckerd, he was heavily involved in the Waterfront Program where he was a sailing instructor as a work scholar and a Boat Captain for EC-SAR. Tom’s career story started with an Eckerd College internship that came from his faculty mentor, Tony Brunello. His internship was at the NOAA Office of General Consul. While he was not interested in being a lawyer, it provided extremely valuable context. The internship launched a 22 year career and forever changed his life. 

In 1999 joined NOAA as a Habitat Restoration Project Manager working on implementing and promoting marine restoration. With this team, they pursued legal remedies to restore habitats after oil spills, toxic releases, and physical impacts. 

Tom moved into coral reef restoration in 2006 as Project manager where he led the development and implementation of a national strategy on coral restoration and recovery. Because of Tom's efforts, coral reef restoration efforts went from being a small area of focus for NOAA to a major element of their broader conservation and restoration strategy. In 2010, he was called to be the NRDA Incident Operations Lead after the Nation’s worst oil spill, Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill. During this year, Tom worked on-scene managing more than 500 people on his team, injury assessments and conducting operations in the air, ocean and coastal marshes. He moved into a restoration lead role working with five states and six federal agencies to plan and execute the use of $1 billion dollars of funding for restoration. In 2012, he moved into the Caribbean Lead for Coral Reef Restoration at NOAA where he worked on tropical marine ecosystem conservation. Some of the highlights from this position are leading a team that is executing one of the world’s largest reef restoration projects, Mission: Iconic Reefs, to restore seven iconic reefs in the Florida Keys. He founded and served as a co-chair of the global Coral Restoration Consortium that for the first time brings together the world's experts in coral reef restoration, conservation, science, and management under one place. He has been called upon to serve as a subject matter expert on restoration. In 2019, Tom presented a TED Talk at XPRIZE Visioneering that led to Saving Coral Reefs becoming the next XPRIZE and was featured in an interview with Science Friday talking about Reviving The World’s Fading Corals

Recently, Tom has left NOAA and has moved into a Director position at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST). He has helped launch a large-scale reef conservation effort in the northern Red Sea in partnership with NEOM. The project’s initial focus will be the conservation, enhancement and resolution of a 100-hectare reefscape adjacent to Shushah Island. 

Outside of work, Tom is still very active on the water. He is on multiple committees at the Waterfront and in 2018 received the Grover C. Wrenn ‘64 Service award. All of these experiences translate into a lifelong love of boating and the sea, which he expects his next life chapter to be afloat.

Joe Whalen ’14 | B.A. Environmental Studies

Science Communication Designer at The Tampa Bay Estuary Program

Influenced by the pace and culture of Long Island, New York, Joe Whalen has spent his years since relocating to St. Pete cultivating skills and experience in a multitude of fields including environmental communications, graphic design, large-scale event management, and music performance and production. Throughout his four years at Eckerd, Joe supported shore bird conservation efforts through internships while simultaneously pursuing opportunities in the local and international music scene. 

After graduating in 2014 with a B.A. in Environmental Studies and a minor in Visual Arts, Joe chased various Tampa Bay-based opportunities with the Environmental Protection Commission of Hillsborough County, Pathfinder Outdoor Education, and the Zoo Studios and Event Space. Today, Joe finds himself immersed in the emerging field of Environmental Communications, a career track supported by his recently completed Executive Certificate in Environmental Communications for Behavior Change at Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment. 

As the Tampa Bay Estuary Program’s Science Communication Designer, Joe works with regional partners to protect and restore the bay through social marketing tactics and educational programming. He proudly sits on numerous boards and advisory committees, including the Manatee Awareness Coalition, Stormwater Public Education Task Force, Florida-Friendly Landscaping Committee, Bay Soundings Editorial Advisory Committee and Pathfinder Outdoor Education’s Board of Directors. 

Liz Wist ’11 | B.A. Environmental Studies

Education Coordinator at Maryland Coastal Bays Program

Liz Wist (Vander Clute) was initially attracted to Eckerd because of its environmental programs, close proximity to water, and all things nature, but soon realized it was the Eckerd community that would always hold her heart. Liz graduated from Eckerd in 2011 with a BA in Environmental Studies and minors in Marine Science, Biology, and Coastal Management. Throughout her time at Eckerd, Liz was heavily engaged in campus life, working as a Student Ambassador, a Waterfront Supervisor, and co-chair for Relay for Life her junior and senior years. She also played club soccer, participated in Triathlon club, and was proudly part of the team that brought women’s rugby (Go Sirens!) back to EC. She studied abroad in New Zealand, and had the opportunity to attend spring break service trips in both Trinidad and Tobago and Caracas, Venezuela; all which provided her with the scaffolding for her passion for service and working with communities.

After graduation, Liz headed to Texas to work as a Naturalist for YMCA Camp Grady Spruce, an outdoor environmental education school. This experience gave her the initial taste of the field of environmental education, and she has never looked back. She returned to school in 2013 to obtain her MS in Environmental Studies with a concentration in Environmental Education and Interpretation from the University of North Carolina- Wilmington. Liz worked on a grant to build environmental literacy in underserved middle schools and had lead a directed independent study creating a school garden guidebook for elementary schools completed with engineering designs, a community involvement plan, and curriculum.

After being away for 8 years, Liz found herself drawn back to her small town home of Berlin, Maryland. For the last 6 years, she has been the Education Coordinator at the Maryland Coastal Bays Program, a non-profit and National Estuary Program that works to conserve and restore the Coastal Bays watershed. As Education Coordinator, Liz provides the vision and leadership for Maryland Coastal Bay Program’s education and public involvement initiatives. Liz is responsible for the development, creation, and evaluation of environmental education programs. Within these programs, she designs learner-centered curriculum and experiential Meaningful Watershed Educational Experiences, leads interpretive programs and summer camps, mentors seasonal staff, and provides professional development for educators. Liz is also responsible for organizing community engagement opportunities and grant writing. Her favorite part about her job is the empowerment she witnesses in some of her program attendees.

Her life outside of work is focused around learning and growing with her young family, spending as much time at the beach exploring and swimming, and finding the newest (hardest) recipe to tackle in the kitchen.

Social Services

Meg Fitzpatrick '12 | B.A. Human Development

Psychologist, PsyD, NCSP at Private Practice

Meg Fitzpatrick graduated Eckerd in 2012 with a B.A. in Human Development. While at Eckerd, Meg was heavily involved in the visual arts scene, but really floated, and tried a little bit of everything! She was not a kid who understood the value of college, and really only succeeded at EC due to the support and love of the Human Development professors. 

After Eckerd, Meg moved to Hawaii for a year to work at a horticultural therapy program, then to Boston to work at a residential treatment center while she figured out what I wanted to do within the world of mental health. She then switched to a position as an in-home therapist for high risk adolescents for two years, and decided grad school was the move. Meg pursued my doctorate in School Psychology at University of Colorado Denver, and graduated in 2020. Since then, she has also pursued her license in clinical psychology, and is now a dual licensed psychologist with both clinical and school licenses.

Outside of work Meg is an artist, a plant mom, and a professional aerialist in a circus group! 

Briana O'Neill ’09 | B.A. Human Development 

Co Founder & Speech Language Pathologist at Supercalifragilistic Speech Language Therapy

Briana is a graduate of Eckerd College, class of 2009 with a Bachelor of Art in Human Development. While at Eckerd College, Briana participated in a variety of service leadership projects, from on campus to Chicago to Puerto Rico! She studied abroad at the London House, where she traveled to up to 15 different countries. Her Eckerd college roommates are still her best friends, and they are fortunate to get together across the country at least a few times per year! 

As your mentor, Briana will strive to be an educator, coach and advocate for you, and she will use her many skill sets in leadership and organization to grow your professional strengths while Thinking OutSide the Box.

Briana holds a Master of Science in Communication Disorders, and is the Co-Founder & Lead Speech-Language Pathologist of Supercalifragilistic Therapy, Inc. She is a member of the Junior League of Eastern Fairfield, and holds a graduate certificate in Educational Leadership from UMass Boston ‘16.  Briana sits on a variety of panels for Eckerd College and enjoys attending alumni events in cities like Boston and New York!

Arts & Humanities

Allison Kramer '01 | B.A. East Asian Studies

Art Consultant at Private Company

Allison graduated from Eckerd in 2001 where she majored in East Asian Studies and minored in Antropology.  While at Eckerd she studied three languages; tutored in the Writing Center; was a Ford Scholar; studied abroad in Greece, Austria, and Sweden; sampled classes ranging from Chinese philosophy to modern dance; joined the cross-country team her senior year; and spent a good deal of time on the beach at Pass-a-Grille. She also worked at an art gallery off-campus for three years. Originally from rural Wisconsin, she found Eckerd as a result of a basketball scholarship and snow-bird grandparents in the area. 

After graduating from Eckerd, Allison studied French baking & pastry arts at culinary school in Canada and subsequently spent a year dipping truffles and baking bread in the wee hours of the morning prior to enrolling in a graduate program in arts management with a focus on museum studies. While at the University of Oregon she earned a fellowship in the education department of a museum, pursued research into gender equity in the management of American art museums, and decided upon a career path in the art world 

Since then, Allison has worked in Seattle’s art community as a fundraiser for two museums, one art school, and a large performing arts organization; worked in art galleries specializing in Japanese prints (utilizing that East Asian Studies degree!) and contemporary sculpture, respectively; and led private sales at the studio of artist Dale Chihuly. To name a few museums and galleries, the Nordic Heritage Museum, the Pilchuck Glass School, the Museum of Glass, the Pacific Northwest Ballet, and Chihuly. Today, she works independently assisting art collectors with acquisitions, and with an art advisory & appraisal firm serving private, corporate, and institutional clients around the country. She’s also recently become more involved with her mother’s business, a private gallery specializing in Scandinavian antiques and art based in the upper Midwest. Allison credits the people who provided her with opportunities & mentorship at different stages of her career for the interesting career path she's walked, and believes it important to do the same for others if one can.  

Outside of work, Allison has served on nonprofit arts boards, volunteers with the elder community, raises orchids and collects ceramic art. She’s found the Pacific Northwest a great place to ski and her newest hobby is crabbing in the Puget Sound.  


Susan Kilham ’65 | B.S. Biology

Professor Emerita at Drexel University

Susan S. Kilham went to Duke University after graduation from Eckerd College (formerly known as Florida Presbyterian College) where she received her Ph.D. in Zoology/Oceanography. Her dissertation was on deep sea bivalve mollusks living on the abyssal plain of the North Atlantic Ocean. She and her husband Peter Kilham went to Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution for their postdoctoral research following which they went to the University of Michigan in 1972. She started working on phytoplankton in the Great Lakes and other lakes around the world. After Peter died on a research trip to Africa in 1989, she decided to move to Drexel University in Philadelphia in January 1991. She retired in 2020 and is now Professor Emerita.

Susan was exposed to phytoplankton research during her postdoctoral time and pursued studies on competition among planktonic diatoms in collaboration with Peter and several graduate and undergraduate students. One major finding was that resource ratios were fundamental to understanding phytoplankton community structure. After moving to Drexel she began collaborations with scientists at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia (which eventually became part of Drexel University).  She worked on phytoplankton/zooplankton interactions and intensive field studies, especially in the large lakes of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. A major discovery was that species diversity increased with the increase in the number of limiting resources. Her research resulted in more than 75 publications and many professional recognitions, including Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and Fellow of the Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography. She also received the Delaware Estuary Sharp Lifetime Achievement Award and the Phycological Society of America Award of Excellence, among others.  

She also participated in activities devoted a lot of her energies to mentorship. She was advisor or co-advisor for 21 doctoral students and served on committees of an additional 67 Ph.D. students. She had 17 MS students and served on committees of an additional 30 MS students. Many undergraduates also worked in her laboratories. She also participated in activities promoting women in science and engineering at all levels.  

Susan passed away early 2022. To read more about Susan's impact on her last mentee in the Career Mentor program, check out the recent article