Doug Lipton has been tapped to fill the newly created position of senior research economist at NMFS. He will start on June 3, 2013.
In this new role, Lipton will provide leadership and strategic direction to the agency's economics and social science research program, the agency says. According to NMFS, Lipton's deep experience in fisheries economics will be invaluable as the agency works to support the economic vitality of the nation's coastal communities and the productivity of its ocean resources.
"Doug Lipton is a leader in bringing innovative economic thinking to bear on tough issues in managing marine resources and maintaining healthy coastal ecosystems," said Richard Merrick, NMFS' chief science advisor, in an agency news release. "Supporting the well-being of our coastal communities is one of this agency's priority missions. I am very pleased that Doug, as our senior research economist, will help point the way forward as we work to insure that coastal communities benefit from a healthy ocean, today and into the future."
Currently, Lipton is an associate professor in the University of Maryland's department of agricultural and resource economics. Much of his research has focused on valuing marine resources such as fish, shellfish, and recreation, and on understanding how water quality affects the value of those resources.
In addition, NMFS says, he's been instrumental in developing innovative policies that use economic incentives to drive environmental improvements. For example, the agency says, he has recently worked on creating market-based programs to fund oyster reef restoration in order to improve water quality in the Chesapeake Bay.
Lipton has also been program leader for the Maryland Sea Grant Extension Program for the past 20 years. This program, which is partly funded by NOAA, connects experts in aquaculture, seafood, water quality, and marine and watershed science with the government agencies, citizens groups, and businesses that stand to benefit from their expertise. Among other things, the Sea Grant Extension Program assists coastal communities in contributing to the restoration of the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem. The program has also helped the crab industry use technology to improve seafood quality control.
"I am excited and honored to be appointed NOAA's first Senior Research Economist," said Lipton, who added that economics and social science research are fundamental to maintaining a vital economy and a healthy ecosystem. Lipton is particularly interested in exploring how economic and social science can be incorporated into developing approaches for ecosystem based fisheries management, NMFS says.
"More generally, I will build on our already outstanding economic and social science research program, and to ensure that research results are used to inform our policies," Lipton said.
Lipton has worked for the agency before. Before beginning graduate studies in economics, Lipton worked as a fisheries biologist for NMFS, and later worked as an economist for the agency while pursuing his doctoral studies.
Lipton received his Ph.D. in agricultural and resource economics from the University of Maryland. He also holds a master's degree in marine science from the College of William and Mary, and a bachelor's degree in biology from Stony Brook University.
Callifornia crabbing: Here's a fun video shot on the decks of the Majestik while catching Dungeness crab off the coast of northern California.
Alaska fisherman and commercial fisheries activist Kevin Adams was elected chairman at the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute board of directors meeting on May 9 in Anchorage.
The governor-appointed board consists of seven members: five seafood processors and two industry representatives actively engaged in commercial fishing. Adams was appointed to fill a harvester seat by Gov. Frank Murkowski in 2004.
With 38 years of fishing experience in Bristol Bay, Adams has long been an active member in the Alaska fishing industry, ASMI says. He has worked for both the Alaska Fisheries Development Foundation and the Bering Sea Fisherman's Association, and represents Alaska fishermen on numerous boards.
The Northeast Regional Planning Body, a group of state, tribal and federal representatives from New England who are working to implement the National Ocean Policy and address critical New England ocean issues, is holding a series of public meetings in May and June.
The meetings are being held to discuss draft regional ocean planning goals and associated potential actions. The planning body seeks input on these goals and actions. Additional information on the group's progress can be found here.
The meetings will also provide an opportunity to review draft maps and products from initial efforts to gather information on the natural resources and diverse uses of the ocean, including fishing, transportation, energy and infrastructure, aquaculture, and recreation.