Cetos Director, Principle Investigator Humpback Whale
Studies, Research Projects Manager
Ann Zoidis (M.S. Physiology and Behavioral Biology) is
the Director and Founder of Cetos Research Organization.
Ann has over 20 years experience as a field researcher,
wildlife biologist, and marine mammal scientist. Though
she started out studying terrestrial species and habitats,
Ann has spent most of the last 18 years researching marine
mammals. In addition, for the last several years, she has
managed numerous large environmental contracts for various
federal agencies, and also has directed field research
projects for various institutions (including at Cetos).
Ann spent much of her childhood in Greece where she had
close encounters with diverse marine life (whales, dolphins,
sea turtles, octopus, squid, and more), many times just
by snorkeling off the beaches. This hands-on exposure to
marine wildlife, as well as her time spent with local fisherman
watching them set and haul their nets, started her love
of the sea, as well as gave her an early education to the
destruction that occurs from overfishing, gill nets, long
lines, and other abuses of the oceanic environment.
Ann has worked with many organizations and on numerous
projects relating to marine mammals and terrestrial wildlife all over the US. In
addition to her academic and research pursuits, Ann is
an environmental consultant for Tetra
Tech. She is also a Research Associate of the College
of the Atlantic in Bar Harbor, Maine. As part of this role,
Ann served as senior scientist and the Mount Desert Rock
Marine Research Station assistant manager for the marine
mammal research group Allied Whale for many summers at
. At Tetra Tech,
Ann researches and authors environmental documents (EISs,
EIRs, BAs) assessing anthropogenic impacts to wildlife
and has recently been involved in numerous federal projects
in Hawaii. As a research biologist, she does biological
monitoring, surveys, and behavioral research, with much
of her work focusing on acoustic research (animal vocalizations)
or on the effects of ecosystem disturbance on animal behavior.
Ann has conducted numerous species surveys and studies
from vessel, shore, and aerial platforms throughout the
US, including AK and HI. Ann's latest role is running Cetos,
an organization born out of several dynamic and interesting
factors but largely fomented by a spirit of collaboration
between several long time colleagues, many of whom have
all done work in Hawaiian waters for decades. Ann is currently
a Federal and State Permit holder for humpback whale research.
Co-Investigator Humpback Whale Studies, Boat Captain, Cetos
Scientific Advisory Board
Andy Day (B.S. Fisheries and Wildlife Biology) has been
a field biologist and research scientist for over 25 years,
throughout the US and internationally. After getting his
Bachelors Degree from the University of Georgia in 1984,
he began working on field biology projects. He has a broad
knowledge of ecosystem ecology, natural history, behavioral
biology, disturbance studies, avian studies, fish habitat
assessment, endangered species, and marine mammal studies.
Andy has many skills including being a certified boat operator,
a professional wildlife photographer, an expert diver,
and a veteran field biologist. Much of Andy's work has
been on seabird or terrestrial bird research. In fact,
he currently is a director of the Georgia Department of
Natural Resources Swallow-tailed
Kite Monitoring program which he has assisted with
for many years. In addition, Andy has worked on numerous
marine mammal projects nationally and worldwide. Andy is
on the Cetos scientific advisory board and assists in many
of the decisions involving our projects. He has been part
of Cetos's research since our inception. His insight and
perspective have been instrumental in the development and
work of Cetos from the beginning and his technical expertise
is invaluable. A short list of his skills that support
Cetos include his work as an acoustic tech, his expertise
with humpback whale behavior, his knowledge of the local
Hawaiian waters, his keen observer and ID skills, boat
handling and survey skills, and more, all of which supports
and enhances our research.
Senior Scientist, Principle Investigator Offshore Surveys
and Acoustic Research, Cetos Scientific Advisory Board
Tom Norris (M.S. Marine Sciences) is the director of Bio-Waves,
a marine environmental consulting company. He has over
18 years of experience specializing in marine vertebrate
ecology and behavioral biology, marine bioacoustics, and
most recently, the development of new technologies to study
large marine animals.
Tom works with Cetos Research Organization as senior scientist
and is a member of the scientific advisory board. His research
with Cetos is focused primarily on deep-water acoustic-visual
surveys for which he is the lead scientist. Tom also leads
our collaborations with NOAA-NWFSC where he provides expertise
on the use of passive acoustics in support of Dr.
Brad Hanson's killer whale research.
Tom has worked on several applied projects to reduce the
impacts of man-made noise on living marine resources. These
includes work on the ATOC (now
NPAL) marine mammal research program, the marine animal
monitoring and mitigation effort for the USS Winston Churchill
shock trials, and a marine
mammal mitigation program for the R/V Ewing (the geo-seismic
research vessel operated by the NSF and Columbia University's Lamont
Doherty Earth Observatory). Most recently Mr. Norris
has served as the team leader for passive acoustic studies
as part of the Mineral Management Service's Sperm
Whale Seismic Study (SWSS) in the Gulf of Mexico. He
also is working with NOAA's Northwest
Fisheries Science Center's marine mammal program, to
develop and use passive acoustic methods to survey and
track killer whales along the outer coast of the Pacific
Tom received his graduate degree from Moss
Landing Marine Laboratories in Monterey Bay, CA.
He holds a federal research permit to conduct tagging
on a variety of federally protected and endangered species
of whales. When he isn't at sea, he is usually in the
water surfing or thinking about surfing.
Thomas A. Jefferson
Senior Scientist; Project Manager (CA and International
Research); Cetos Scientific Advisory Board
Tom Jefferson (Ph.D. Wildlife and Fisheries Science) has
been studying marine mammals since 1983, when he was an
undergraduate at the University of California, Santa Cruz.
His Masterís degree is from Moss Landing Marine Laboratories,
and his Ph.D. is from Texas A&M University. He is currently
a Visiting Scientist as the Southwest Fisheries Science
Center, NOAA Fisheries.
Tomís main interests are the development of marine mammal
identification aids, and investigating the systematics
and population ecology of the more poorly-known species
of dolphins and porpoises. Essentially all of his work
for the past 16 years has been related to conservation
and management of marine mammals threatened by human activities.
Since 1995, he has been working extensively in Southeast
Asia, and has traveled widely in the region. His current
primary research focuses on the conservation biology of
Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin and finless porpoise populations
in Hong Kong and surrounding waters, as well as the population
biology of bottlenose dolphins in California. He is also
working on other projects looking at the systematics and
ecology of these species throughout their ranges.
In addition, Tom is involved in many side projects, including
those on the taxonomy and population ecology of tropical
dolphins (Delphinus and Stenella). With co-authors, Marc
Webber and Robert Pitman, he just published a comprehensive
identification guide to the marine mammals of the world
(published by Academic Press in 2008). He has published
over 100 scientific papers and books, and has attended
many meetings and workshops as an invited expert. He has
also spent many months at sea on fishing boats and research
vessels in various parts of the world.
Tomís outside interests include mountain biking, hiking,
drums and percussion, outdoor photography, and wildlands
preservation. He is married and lives in San Diego. A member
of the Cetos Scientific Advisory Board, Tom has participated
in a number of Cetos research projects.
Sasha began working with Cetos in 2004 and has participated in the humpback whale field projects and research analysis. She supports the general day-to-day running of Cetos, assisting with administrative work for both the Cetos Atlantic and Pacific offices, permit work, fundraising, and more. She also does the research, and is part of data entry/processing, data write-ups, presentations, and many other facets of our work. Sasha works as both a data collector and an underwater videographer in the field, and has learned a lot from Ann and her team. She got her start in Maine working as a naturalist on a whale watch vessel, and with Allied Whale as the manager of the North Atlantic Fin Whale Catalogue, during which time she was introduced to Ann and began working with Cetos Atlantic. She has extensive photo-ID experience, as well as endangered species observer experience, both vessel-based and helicopter-based. Sasha has recently relocated to Bellingham , WA to pursue a Master’s of Science in Marine and Estuarine Science at Western Washington University . She is working with Cetos board member Dr. Alejandro Acevedo-Gutierrez studying foraging ecology, specifically diving behavior, of NW Pacific harbor seals. Once she graduates, Sasha hopes to continue studying diving behavior of marine mammals, but with a focus on fin whales in the Gulf of Maine with Cetos Atlantic. Sasha holds a USCG 100-Ton Inland Master's License, as well as a PADI Advanced Open Water SCUBA certification.
Kate's passion for cetacean research started when she studied humpbacks in Costa Rica, while completing her BS in Environmental Science (Union Institute & University) with a focus in Cetacean Biology in 2003. She is currently pursuing her MSc in Environmental Science and Policy at Johns Hopkins University. Kate's marine mammal experience includes compliance and mitigation during seismic operations in Cook Inlet, Alaska specific to the endangered Cook Inlet beluga whales since 2007, marine mammal research and observation in the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas during a multi-year baseline study since 2008, and marine mammal aerial surveys during naval training events off Southern California since 2009. She has extensive non-profit and outdoor experience, previously working in Costa Rica with ASANA, rainforest conservation and marine protection organization, guiding in the rainforest of Hacienda Baru National Wildlife Refuge and is currently on the board of directors of HoWL (Homer Wilderness Leaders) in Homer, Alaska. Kate began working with Cetos in 2008 and has participated in the 2008, 2010 and 2012 Maui field seasons. In between those seasons she contributed to our publications, conference presentation work, fundraising efforts, and more. Working as both a data collector/processor and an underwater videographer in the field, she assists in data analysis, paper writing and other technical aspects of Cetos research year 'round.