PhD Candidate 

Marine Science & Conservation 

Duke University Marine Laboratory

Political Ecology of Coastal Fisheries

I am interested in human-nature relationships and developing strategies to support both environmental health and human well-being. I study the intersections of social, ecological, and political dimensions of fisheries development and coastal management. I believe that a sustainable and healthy future for coastal communities requires environmentally and socially just management and governance, developed through interdisciplenary, community-based research and collective action.

Current Research 

My dissertation research focuses on knowledge and power in coastal fishery governance. I study the integration of multiple knowledges, values, and worldviews into the governance of salmon on the west coast of Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada. I conduct research with the permission and guidance of Tla-o-qui-aht First Nations and Ha'oom Fishing Society, with the intent to support the Nuu-chah-nulth First Nations' path towards self determination through agency in fisheries governance.

I am also involved in projects regarding seafood values and oyster aquaculture in coastal North Carolina, and in the assessment of equity in social economic outcomes of coastal restoration projects in the Gulf of Mexico.

Click here for more information about my dissertation research and other projects.


As an undergraduate, I studied Biology with a Marine Biology focus and International Studies at Oregon State University. Through the OSU Novak Lab, I gained field and lab research experience in marine ecology of rocky intertidal systems and developed an independent research project studying gooseneck barnacles. My research developed into my undergraduate thesis, which in turn evolved into a collaborative project between multiple stakeholders on the Oregon coast to establish a sustainable, scientifically informed and community supported fishery. I also helped lead OSU Divest, a student organized campaign demanding OSU remove their investments in fossil fuels and redistribute those funds in investments supporting a sustainable future through environmental and social justice initiatives and renewable energy technology.


Through working with stakeholders and fishery management offices in my research and learning about intersectional environmental justice in Divest organizing, I became interested in the social sciences and decided to switch my study focus and discipline. I want to develop environmentally sustainable and socially just coastal management through participatory, inclusive, and community driven research.  In the fall of 2017, I began pursuing an interdisciplinary PhD in Marine Science and Conservation at Duke University under the mentorship of Dr. Grant Murray.