Editorial Board

Sylvia Earle PhD – Chair of the Editorial Board


Dr Sylvia Earle is an Explorer in Residence at the National Geographic Society, Founder of Mission Blue, Founder of Deep Ocean Exploration and Research Inc. (DOER), Chair of the Advisory Council for the Harte Research Institute and former Chief Scientist of NOAA. Author of more than 200 publications, and leader of more than 100 expeditions with over 7,000 hours underwater, Dr Earle is a graduate of Florida State University with M.A. and PhD degrees from Duke University and 27 honorary doctorates. Her research concerns the ecology and conservation of marine ecosystems and develops the technology of access to the deep sea. She is the subject of the Emmy Award-winning Netflix documentary, Mission Blue, and the recipient of more than 100 national and international honours and awards including being named Time Magazine’s first Hero of the Planet, a Living Legend by the Library of Congress, in 2014, UNEP Champion of the Earth, Glamour Magazine’s 2014 Woman of the Year, member of the Netherlands Order of the Golden Ark, and winner of 2009 TED Prize, the Walter Cronkite Award, the 1996 Explorer Club Medal, the Royal Geographic Society 2011 Patron’s Medal and the National Geographic 2013 Hubbard Medal.

Sylvia Earle is synonymous with “Her Deepness”, “the Living Legend” and “the First Hero for the Planet”. But as humble as she is heroic, she is not one to be preoccupied with material wealth or apparent fame. Coined as the true ambassador of our world’s oceans, Sylvia is an oceanographer, explorer, author and lecturer with an insatiable passion for underwater exploration and marine conservation. Sylvia still currently holds the record for a solo dive to an astonishing depth of 1,005 metres into the deep sea.

Michael AW – Publisher, CEO


Michael is a wildlife photographer, explorer and ocean advocate. He is the principal author of 38 and co-author of another 10 books about the ocean. His accolades include winning more than 68 international photographic awards and being named one of the world’s most influential nature photographers by Outdoor Photographer.

In 1999, he led a team of 44 for the world’s first 24-hour documentation of a submerged reef, Maaya Thila in the Maldives. The feature-length documentary “24 Hours Beneath the Rainbow Sea” was produced for the National Geographic Channel and a commemorative book of the same title was published in 2000. From 2010 to 2018 Michael was the project director for the Elysium Epic expedition to the Antarctic, Arctic and the Coral Triangle with 57, 67 and 49 team members respectively. The expedition team comprises some of the world’s most influential image-makers and scientists, to document the biodiversity and create a report card of the front line of climate change.

In 2008, Stan Waterman conferred Michael with the Peter Benchley Shark Conservation Award from the Shark Research Institute in recognition of his highly-effective and unrelenting campaign against shark fin soup consumption in the Asia-Pacific region. Michael AW is the founder of Asian Geographic and Ocean Geographic magazines, as well as OceanNEnvironment, a non-profit organization registered with Environment Australia. 

Evonne Ong - Chief Editor


Evonne is a multipotentialite who can more or less be described in 3 words: dancing, diving and drugs. Pharmacy is her profession; diving is her passion. A pharmacist with a background in research, education and training, she is also an avid scuba diver and free diver. Her love for the ocean and marine conservation led her to progress from land to underwater photography and videography, and eventually cross paths with Michael Aw. She started as an Editor for Ocean Geographic in April 2011, took over as Chief Editor in 2012, and has since edited 44 issues of the magazine, and six books by Michael Aw. In addition to her editorial work, she has been an integral part of OG projects and campaigns, written articles for the magazine as well as newspapers, and has been emcee, speaker, moderator and judge in several international underwater festivals and photography competitions.

Dance was her first love. She has now been an ‘ori tahiti (Tahitian dance) addict for 8 years, and now teaches the dance and founded her own dance group. She also has her own training consultancy which specialises in training and coaching for healthcare, pharmaceutical and medical device industries across Asia-Pacific.

Alex Rose – Science Editor / Assistant to Publisher


Alex Rose is the science editor and assistant to the publisher of Ocean Geographic. She is also the founder of Blue Ring. She holds a B.S. in Biology, an M.S. in Aquatic Biology, and has a wide variety of experience in the biological sciences including but not limited to bioacoustics research, exhibit construction, science writing, teaching, public presentation, and aquatic animal husbandry and breeding. Alex is also a professional violinist, photographer, PADI Divemaster, and lover of all things aquatic. Her driving goal is to find ways to protect our world’s precious marine habitats through diving, writing, photography, education, and research.

David Doubilet – Honorary Editor


David is the world’s most celebrated underwater photographer with over fifty stories published in National Geographic. David challenges himself is to redefine photographic boundaries each time he enters the water. His passion is the undersea majesty of light and how to capture it. Completely at home on a coral reef, a World War II wreck, a deep dark fjord or among the great giants in our sea, David has relentlessly pursued the many hidden layers of coral reefs around the globe. His cold water work has immersed him in the rich waters of New Zealand, Tasmania, Scotland, Japan, the Northwest Atlantic and Northeast Pacific. Recent photographic journeys have taken him into some of the largest freshwater systems on our planet such as the great Okavango Delta system in Botswana and the St. Lawrence River.

Jennifer Hayes - Honorary Editor


Jen is an aquatic ecologist who has collected a couple of graduate degrees in zoology, marine and fisheries biology. She came into underwater journalism (photography and writing) out of sheer necessity to enliven dull scientific presentations and publications. To put it simply, strong images of ancient sturgeons spawning, hatching, and migrating are infinitely more captivating to an audience than bar graphs and pie charts. Photography and science lead to natural history articles and then into popular journalism. Jen formed a partnership with David Doubilet in 1999 and co-founded the stock photo company; Undersea Images Inc. Jen and David co-photograph and write for assignment features for numerous domestic and international publications, ad shoots and book projects. Jennifer was the principal photographer for all three Elysium Epic expeditions to the Antarctic, Arctic and Coral Triangle.

Mathieu Meur – Feature Editor


Mathieu has been shooting underwater for 30 years, at first free-diving and subsequently on scuba. A certified dive instructor, Mathieu was one of the early adopters and promoters of digital technology for underwater photography, authoring presumably the first PADI-approved digital underwater photography specialty course in the world in 2001. Mathieu went on to contribute regular columns on photography techniques to dive and photography publications. In 2004, Mathieu co-authored “An Essential Guide to Digital Underwater Photography” with acclaimed photographer Michael Aw. This was the first book entirely dedicated to the techniques associated with shooting digital underwater. The book was met an immediate best-seller, quickly sold out, and an updated version was published in 2005. Following the success of this introductory book, he went on to co-author “An Advanced Guide to Digital Underwater Photography” with Michael Aw in 2007, before publishing 2 more books in subsequent years. Over the past few years, Mathieu has travelled extensively throughout the world for diving, contributed to the training of several hundred divers, conducted seminars, and had numerous articles in dive publications concerning underwater digital photography, dive travel and equipment. After several thousand dives on six continents, Mathieu's main focus is now set on discovering new destinations, hunting for undiscovered shipwrecks, and harnessing varied diving experiences. Mathieu is currently a Master Photographer in Residence and Feature Editor for Ocean Geographic.

William M. Hamner PhD and Peggy P. Hamner M.S


Bill graduated from Yale (1961), received a Ph.D. in Zoology from UCLA (1965) with a dissertation on photoperiodism in birds. Bill joined the Zoology and Environmental Sciences faculty at UC Davis (1966-‘74). Peggy received a B. A. degree in Zoology and a Master of Science degree in Marine Ecology, both from the University of California, Davis. The Hamners began blue water research in 1971, when they and students spent a year in Bimini, scuba diving in the Gulf Stream investigating gelatinous zooplankton. Subsequently they used scuba to investigate oceanic zooplankton in Australia, Palau, Antarctica, and the Pacific, based first at the Australian Institute of Marine Science, then in Palau and finally at UCLA until retirement. Bill is now Emeritus Professor.

Bill was also the Director of the SSWIMS program and a Professor at UCLA in Los Angeles. Peggy is the Project Coordinator for the SSWIMS program and a Staff Research Associate at UCLA in Los Angeles. William and Peggy have been a research team since 1972. Their research approach emphasizes the use of SCUBA or research submersibles to study individual animals in their own environment and collect undamaged live animals.

Bill and Peggy specialise in the behaviour of oceanic animals, emphasizing in situ observations at sea. Their primarily interest is in the distributions, abundances and interactions of pelagic marine organisms. The open sea is a vast three-dimensional environment, seemingly homogeneous and thinly populated when compared to benthic or terrestrial habitats, yet pelagic animals everywhere routinely occur in local aggregations at densities that exceed by far the population sizes estimated by traditional oceanographic techniques. Because most of the interesting events in the sea occur within or near these aggregations. one most focus attention on the causes for their formation and the subsequent dynamics of the organisms therein. Their research focuses on both physical and behavioural factors that generate and maintain these aggregations. Their work also focusses on the ecological role of behaviour in plankton and in fishes in the open ocean using SCUBA in the upper ocean and via submersibles and remotely operated vehicles (ROVS) in the deep sea. They have conducted behavioural studies in the Antarctic, the Gulf of California, the Caribbean, and the Pacific. In situ their research is supplemented with laboratory studies of planktonic animals and fishes maintained in specially designed aquariums.

Doug Perrine - Honorary Advisor & Editor


Doug is widely regarded as one of the world's foremost marine wildlife photographers. His photographs have been reproduced in virtually every major nature magazine in the world, as well as in thousands of books, calendars, greeting cards, posters, etc. His photography has won a number of awards, including the prestigious BBC/ British Gas Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition in the animal behaviour category and the Nature's Best/ Cemex competition in the Professional Marine Wildlife category. He is also the author of seven books on marine life, and numerous magazine articles.

Emma Camp PhD – Honorary Advisor & Editor


Dr Emma Camp is a marine biologist and the Team Leader of the Future Reefs Team at the University of Technology Sydney. Her research ranges from organism-scale molecular signatures to broad-scale ecological interactions and specializes in advancing technical solutions to support innovative scientific capacity to help preserve and rebuild “healthy reefs”. In 2018, Emma co-founded the Coral Nurture Program, a science-tourism partnership to repopulate corals on the Great Barrier Reef. Since 2013, Emma has received or been shortlisted for over 30 awards, including the 2023 WINGS Women in Discovery Award, the 2021 Macquarie University Eureka Prize for Outstanding Early Career Researcher and in 2020 was named a Next Generation Leader by Time Magazine (2020). Emma researches and advocates for the world’s marine life under threat from environmental and climate change.

Howard and Michele Hall - Honorary Advisor & Editor


Howard and Michele are perhaps best known for their underwater IMAXn films - Into the Deep 1994, Island of the Sharks 1998 respectively. In 2002 Howard was underwater sequence director and Michele was location manager for Coral Reef Adventure, a film in which both he and Michele are featured on-camera.  In 2005 they directed and produced Deep Sea 3D which was awarded Best Picture at the Giant Screen Cinema Association Conference and Best Large Format Film at Wildscreen 2006.  In 2009 the Hall’s released Under the Sea 3D.  This film won best cinematography at the Giant Screen Cinema Association Conference in 2009 and Best Documentary at the International 3D Society in 2010. Howard's career as an underwater natural history film producer, cinematographer, still photographer and writer began in the early 1970's. His photographs have been published internationally in hundreds of books and magazines including: Life, Natural History Magazine, National Geographic, GEO, Terre Sauvage, London Illustrated News, and BBC Wildlife.  Howard has authored several books including Sharks, Dolphins, The Kelp Forest, Successful Underwater Photography, and Secrets of the Ocean Realm. Michele Hall is an accomplished still photographer whose images have been published by National Geographic, Fathoms, National Wildlife, Ocean Realm, and many other magazines and books.   Howard and Michele have won seven Emmy Awards. 

Gerald Allen PhD - Honorary Advisor & Editor


Gerald is an internationally renowned authority on the classification and ecology of coral reef fishes of the Indian and Pacific Oceans. He is the author of 31 books and 400 scientific publications. He has an intimate knowledge of fish life on coral reefs, having logged more than 7,000 dives. Field studies form an integral part of Dr. Allen’s research, probably more so than any other marine biologist. He received a Ph.D. in marine zoology from the University of Hawaii in 1971, having done his thesis on anemonefishes. He served as Curator of Fishes at the Western Australian Museum in Perth for 24 years before leaving to take a position with Conservation International as their Science Team Leader. He is a past President of the Australian Society for Fish Biology, an honorary foreign member of the American Society of Ichthyology and Herpetology, and a recent recipient of the prestigious K. Radway Allen Award for Outstanding Contributions in Ichthyological Science.

Brian Skerry – Honorary Editor


Brian Skerry is a photojournalist specializing in marine wildlife and underwater environments. Since 1998 he has been a contract photographer for National Geographic, covering a wide range of subjects and stories. In 2014 he was one of five photographers named as a National Geographic Photography Fellow. In 2015 he was named a Nikon Ambassador and in June 2017 he was awarded the title of Rolex National Geographic Explorer of the Year.  He is currently at work on his 28th story for the magazine.

Brian is an 11-time award winner in the prestigious Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. He was recently honored with the NOGI Arts award for 2019.  He is the only photographer to win the coveted Peter Benchley Award for Excellence in Media. In 2010 National Geographic named one of Brian’s images among their 50 Greatest Photographs of All Time and he was awarded the 2016 National Geographic Photographer’s Photographer Award, an honor bestowed by his colleagues. Brian frequently lectures on photography, exploration and conservation issues, having presented at the United Nations General Assembly, The World Economic Forum, TED Talks, The National Press Club, The Royal Geographical Society in London and the Sydney Opera House.

Brian is the Explorer-In-Residence and a Trustee at the New England Aquarium, a founding member of the International League of Conservation Photographers, Director of The New England Ocean Odyssey for The Conservation Law Foundation and a Fellow National of The Explorers Club. He also serves as a Marine Fellow with Conservation International and serves on the World Wildlife Fund’s National Council as well as the WWF’s Marine Leadership Council.

Alice Soccodato PhD - Honorary Advisor & Editor


Dr Soccodato is a biologist and oceanographer with more than 16 years of experience in research development, technology, logistics, coordination and management of international projects related to marine resources for international institutes and organisations, private companies and NGOs. Advanced technologies applied range from genomics to satellite remote sensing to global ocean models. Her research interests are broadly focused on biodiversity exploration and conservation, biophysical interactions and ecological processes in the marine realm, with specific attention to threatened or commercially important species and fragile habitats to improve conservation efforts. She has a deep passion for exploration to find beauty in nature and art. She dreams about a more respectful, balanced and fulfilling relationship between nature and human beings.

Alice's special skills are Marine Science, Marine Biology, Marine Protected Areas, Oceanography, Biodiversity Observation, Environmental monitoring and Underwater Life Census, Sampling Design and Standard Protocols, Underwater Robotics, Remote Sensing, Marine Logistics, Diving and Boating Operations, Valorisation of Research Products and Technology Transfer, Stakeholders Engagement, Product Uptake, Co-Design, Data Management, Project Management, Grant Application Writing, Scientific Divulgation

Alexander Mustard PhD - Honorary Editor


Alexander Mustard worked as a marine biologist but now works as an underwater photographer. His photographs are widely published in magazines and newspapers and have also won many awards including being a multiple winner in both the BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year and World Festival of Underwater Photography. Alex was an early adopter of digital cameras and has pioneered several of the techniques of digital underwater photography. He is the Digital Officer for the British Society of Underwater Photographers.

Cabell Davis PhD – Oceanographic in Residence


Cabell is a Senior Scientist at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and is the Director of WHOI's Ocean Life Institute with over 30 years' of experience in plankton ecology. He has researched 50 oceanographic cruises and co-developed the Video Plankton Recorder, an underwater video microscope with automatic imaging of high-resolution fragile plankton data. He recently worked with MIT engineers to develop a small underwater digital holographic camera for imaging plankton. He is now modelling the impact of climate change on the fisheries ecosystem.

Miriam Stein Battles – Photo Editor


With a background in environmental and marine conservation policy, Miriam Stein Battles specializes as a conservation photo editor. She has worked on magazines, books and websites for nonprofits such as National Geographic Society, Ocean Geographic Society, Conservation International and The Nature Conservancy.

Miriam was an initial photo researcher on the Smithsonian Sant Ocean Hall and she photo edited the companion book, Smithsonian Ocean. She has also worked on numerous marine-themed titles for National Geographic Children’s Books. Currently the consulting photo editor for Ocean Geographic Magazine, Miriam also freelances for renowned photographers David Doubilet, Jennifer Hayes, Michael AW and has worked with Suzi Eszterhas, Frans Lanting and many others in the past.

Miriam is an Explorers Club Fellow, a founding affiliate of the International League of Conservation Photographers and a board advisor to Sea Save Foundation and Girls Who Click. She has been adopting whales since she was eight years-old and became PADI certified at the age of fifteen.

Advisors & Editors in Deeper & Higher Explorations

Emory Kristof - Honorary Editor


Emory's photography has discovered the unexplored worlds of the deep sea. In August 1998 Kristof's pictures of the Titanic were presented in the National Geographic magazine article, "Tragedy in Three Dimensions." The pictures, taken in 1991 employing high-intensity lighting systems, achieved unprecedented detail due to advances in 3-D computer video-editing. Born in 1942, Kristof studied journalism at the University of Maryland at College Park and received a bachelor's degree in 1964. Kristof was a National Geographic staff photographer from 1964 to 1994 and has produced 39 articles for the National Geographic magazine. Kristof's accomplishments have earned many awards for both writing and photography, including the NOGI Award for Arts from the Underwater Society of America in 1988 and an Explorers Club Lowell Thomas Award for Underwater Exploration in 1986. That same year Kristof received the American Society of Magazine Publishers Innovation in Photography Award for their photographic coverage of the Titanic. Kristof was presented with the 1998 J. Winton Lemen Fellowship Award by the U.S. National Press Photographers Association "for being one of our profession's most imaginative innovators with particular attention to pictures from beneath the ocean brought to the readers of National Geographic magazine."

Ernie Brooks (1935-2020) - Honorary Master Photographer in Residence (in memorium)


Ambassador of the ocean, photographer, and educator Ernest H Brooks II was the head of the renown Brook’s Institute and he carried out his duties that come with that corporate territory including keynote speaking at international conventions, working with national and international organizations and companies to enhance the industry and encouraging photographic education and promoting photography as a universal language. As a noted professional photographer, Brooks won international acclaim for underwater photography and audio/visual presentation. His pursuit of dramatic marine images has descended into the treacherous waters beneath the polar icecaps and into the depth of every ocean. Ernie photographic legacy is the evidence that has illustrated the dramatic changes in our oceans and he himself remains a tremendous voice for oceanic exploration.

Passing away in 2020 he is sadly missed by all.

Stan Waterman - Honorary Editor (in memorium)


Stan has been at the forefront of scuba diving since its inception as a recreational sport both at home and throughout the world. Stan was co-director of underwater photography and the second unit in the production of The Deep, a movie based on Peter Benchley's best-selling novel. More recent productions include documentaries for ABC's "Spirit of Adventure" series and the "Expedition Earth" series on ESPN. Stan has received numerous honours and awards for his work in television, including five Emmies, two Gold Medals from the U.K. Underwater Film Festival, four Golden Eagles, a lifetime Achievement Award from the Miami Expo and from Boston Sea Rovers, the Cousteau Diver of the Year Award, the Richard Hopper Day Memorial Medal from the Philadelphia Academy of Natural Sciences, and most recently has been inducted to the International Scuba Diving Hall of Fame.

Chris Lee - Editor Emiritus


Christopher was the co- founder of Asian Geographic and the managing editor for six years until 2005. Chris was also behind the successful transformation of Scuba Diver Australasia, and was its managing editor until 2005. He has worked on a range of marine conservation issues including the successful Say No to Shark fins campaign. Chris has also served on the board of OceanNEnvironment. Building on his early career in economic research, he is currently a Senior Economist with the Department of Environment and Climate Change (NSW) in Australia.

Joe Moreira – Editor Emeritus


Joe is an adventurer, speaker, thinker, trainer and counselor. An early career in the military, offered opportunities to learn, develop, teach, strategise and validate new ideas in the highly specialized fields of demolitions and mine warfare. Gifted with a richly timbered voice, it has been used to speak, train and facilitate with impact and conviction to audiences ranging from heads of states and foreign armies to the ordinary man. He found synergy with the Ocean Geographic Society's vision and goals. A longtime advocate that good leaders decide the fate of good corporate culture and governance, which must include the need to protect our environment and synergizing with nature, stayed the course in the face of many challenges to this belief.

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