At the Helm

Dr Adam Smith

Dr Adam Smith

Founder and Managing Director

Dr Adam Smith is a dedicated scientist, manager and leader who has a lifelong commitment to the marine environment and a vision to make a positive difference for current and future generations. Adam is Managing Director of Reef Ecologic and Adjunct Associate Professor with James Cook University. Adam has almost 30 years’ experience and has initiated, collaborated and delivered many innovative and important ecological and social projects involving tourism, fisheries, ports, Defence and research in the Great Barrier Reef, Pacific and the world. He is a people person and is recognised for empowering teams and delivering excellent outcomes. Adam has a BSc (Hons), PhD and MBA and has authored over 50 Scientific papers and books.
Nathan Cook, MSc

Nathan Cook, MSc

Applied Marine Scientist

Nathan is an applied scientist and specialist in coral reef restoration and capacity building with 20 years experience working in the Pacific and Southeast Asia. Nathan has been a passionate advocate for sustainability and stewardship, working with communities, tourism businesses and governments to activate and sustain meaningful on-ground actions to build and support the resilience of coral reefs. He has developed local-specific marine monitoring and assessment programs and establishing innovative coral reef restoration programs in several key locations around the world. His decades of practical experience is underpinned by a Masters in Marine Science. He has authored and co-authored several technical reports and peer review publications.
Jo Stacey

Jo Stacey

Project Officer

Jo is an associate of Reef Ecologic and has assisted with the Whitsunday Public Art and the Reef Restoration Project and International Coral Reef Management and Leadership Course. She is passionate about sustainability and the interface between art, science and community. Her previous role of arts administrator at  Perc Tucker (Townsville) Regional Art Gallery spanned 10 years, she was part of a small dynamic team with a busy exhibition and public program schedule across 2 galleries.  Arts administration encompassed finance, the volunteer program, gallery membership, and all administrative support for the exhibitions and public programs.
Gemma Molinaro

Gemma Molinaro

Marine Scientist

Gemma Molinaro is a marine scientist with an MSc from James Cook University and background in diving and underwater photography. She has worked as on a number of projects as an associate of Reef Ecologic including assisting with reef restoration, reef health surveys and community engagement activities. Gemma has led marine surveys on the Great Barrier Reef for a number of years as the project coordinator for Reef Check and also focused on community engagement and involvement in marine conservation education. Gemma is passionate about reef conservation and learning new ways to make positive impacts on people and environment.
Al Songcuan

Al Songcuan

Environmental Research Scientist/ GIS Specialist
Al is a marine biologist from the Philippines with extensive experience in fisheries, climate change, habitat and vulnerability assessment, marine ecology, and environmental management. He has a Master of Science degree in Marine Science from James Cook University. He has skills in the applications of geospatial information using GIS and remote sensing in the coastal and marine environment. He has worked on different local and international Reef Ecologic projects such as impact assessment on corals in Mozambique, database development for the coastal and marine strategy of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, reef restoration, citizen science and reef surveys. He is very passionate in using his knowledge and skills to help manage the marine environment and save the reefs for future generation.

Our ASSOCIATES

Professor Iain Gordon

Professor Iain Gordon

Professor Iain Gordon holds honorary appointments with the Fenner School of Environment and Society at the Australian National University, Central Queensland University, the James Hutton Institute and CSIRO. He was recently the Deputy Vice Chancellor (Division of Tropical Environments and Societies) at James Cook University. Iain worked for CSIRO from 2003 – 2010, where he led the Water for a Healthy Country GBR node on grazing land management and worked with a wide range of stakeholders (agricultural peak bodies, QDPI and NRM bodies) to deliver innovative solutions in support of improved water quality flowing from the catchments into the lagoon of the Great Barrier Reef. Iain has a passion and commitment for leadership, sustainable regional development and harnessing the tropics’ enormous potential through education and research.
Dr Daniela Ceccarelli

Dr Daniela Ceccarelli

Dr. Daniela Ceccarelli is an independent marine ecology consultant with extensive training and experience in tropical marine ecosystems. Her research and review projects have included studies on coral reef fish and invertebrates, seagrass beds and mangroves, and have required a good understanding of a wide range of topics. She also continues to collaborate with colleagues in academic institutions to further her research interests on coral reefs. In her personal life, she spends her time parenting three teenage boys, practicing and teaching yoga, and indulging in music and art.
Jo Johnson

Jo Johnson

Johanna Johnson is a Partner and Senior Scientist at C2O Consulting and has 25 years’ experience in marine research and management in the Asia-Pacific region. She specialises in climate change vulnerability and adaptation, community-based conservation, marine monitoring, science synthesis and providing decision-support for management and conservation. Johanna is also a Director of the C2O Pacific division based out of Vanuatu that focuses on sustainable marine ecosystems in the Pacific region.
Terry Harper

Terry Harper

Terry Harper has more than 25 years experience managing protected areas including the Great Barrier Reef. As Director of TerraFormDesign, Terry brings his expertise and passion to build capacity of managers to deliver the best outcomes for coral reefs, and the people who depend upon them. He recognises that effective management depends on people and relationships, and brings out the best in people for lasting mutual benefit.
Katie Frisch

Katie Frisch

Katie Frisch is a social marketing specialist with a passion for using behavioural change tools and creative communication approaches to protect coral reefs. She has worked for world leading organizations such as Rare, the Nature Conservancy, the Pacific Islands Climate Change Cooperative, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority and the Australian Institute of Marine Science.  Katie has translated cutting edge climate science for residents of Hawaii, helped Australian schools take action to protect the Great Barrier Reef, and supported rural landholders in adopting “reef friendly” practices. She developed some of the first available student resources on the impacts of climate change on coral reefs.
Jon Day

Jon Day

Jon has 39 years professional experience as a marine and terrestrial park planner, park manager and ranger (including 28 years in Great Barrier Reef; 4 years in Kakadu NP). Jon worked as a Director at the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority for 16 years; major highlights included his leadership roles in the Great Barrier Reef’s rezoning and in World Heritage matters. During his career, Jon developed a variety of marine and terrestrial park policies. He is currently undertaking a post-career PhD at ARC Centre for Coral Reef Studies at James Cook University. Jon has 70+ peer-reviewed publications, including author of 12 book chapters.
Artie Jacobson

Artie Jacobson

Arthur Jacobson is an experienced international professional with broad skills and proven ability to lead teams to consistently deliver high outcomes in complex cross-cultural environments. Specific knowledge and involvement of community-driven program implementation and, importantly the interpersonal skills and tenacity to develop collaborative stakeholder engagement and an enabling operational environment. Key areas of expertise include, ‘Special’ Area Management – Marine, Terrestrial and Coastal with an emphasis on program planning and operations/project delivery; Natural resource assessment and High-level cultural competency through extensive association with Australian Aboriginal communities and the Koiari/Biage people of Papua New Guinea.
Andrew Simmonds

Andrew Simmonds

Andrew first started understanding the Great Barrier Reef through his work, in 1991. As a vessel master, environmental scientist and planner, he has 15 years experience in marine operations and protected area management in the Great Barrier Reef and Torres Strait. Through his commitment and passion Andrew has been able to bring people together to create progressive outcomes not only for reefs but the communities which rely on them. It has been his experience designing and leading marine conservation programs where he has come to recognise the importance of people and relationships in achieving any desired outcome. Andrew has authored numerous science-based and technical, statutory documents for government.
Trevor Gilbert

Trevor Gilbert

Trevor is a consultant with over 35 years in the private and public sectors working as an environmental scientist, marine pollution emergency responder, spatial data scientist, HAZMAT and analytical chemist and oil exploration geochemist.

He has worked for the CSIRO, GBRMPA, Australian Maritime Safety Authority, United Nations, Electricity Commission of Victoria, NSW State Emergency Service, Asia-Pacific ASA and numerous other private consultancies. He has successfully managed over 200 small and large project and over 40 major maritime accidents, ship groundings and marine spill incidents including Australia’s largest oil spill incident the Montara well, and numerous incidents across the Pacific Islands.

Trevor has authored 110 papers, manuals and book chapters relating to emergency management, pollution response, shipwreck response, marine pollution risk assessment, hazardous substance incident, decision support systems and oil and gas exploration geochemistry.