Top of Page
Skip main navigation

2024-26 Susan L. Williams National Coral Reef Management Fellowship

The 2024 Susan L. Williams National Coral Reef Management Fellowship program is a partnership between Nova Southeastern University’s National Coral Reef Institute, NOAA’s Coral Reef Conservation Program, the U.S. Department of Interior Office of Insular Affairs, and the U.S. Coral Reef All Islands Committee.

The program recruits Coral Reef Management Fellows for the seven U.S. coral reef jurisdictions (American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Florida, Guam, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands) to address current capacity gaps and to build longer-term capacity in these locations. This is done by placing highly qualified individuals whose education and work experience meet each jurisdiction’s specific coral reef management needs. The program’s goal is to develop a thriving collaborative fellowship program that builds excellent next-generation leaders and capacity for effective local coral reef ecosystem management.

American Samoa • Riley Garvey

Riley Garvey is originally from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina and received his B.S. in Biosystems Engineering from Clemson University and has spent more than two years working in many aspects of coral restoration in the Florida Keys. As the American Samoa Coral Fellow, Riley will be working with the Coral Reef Advisory Group to install and monitor restoration interventions at sites around the island of Tutuila. He will monitor new and existing interventions for success and use what is learned to help inform updates to American Samoa’s Action Plan for Coral Reef Restoration. Riley will also build on the work of previous Coral Fellows to increase local capacity for coral restoration by continuing to engage community members in restoration work.

CNMI • Bailey Warren

Originally from California, Bailey Warren received her B.S. in Biology from California State University, Monterey Bay and her M.A. in International Environmental Policy with a focus on Ocean and Coastal Resource Management from at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies. As the Coral Fellow in Saipan, CNMI, Bailey will work to produce an updated strategic communications plan for the Commonwealth’s Coral Reef Initiative that will include a standard framework for the Initiative and an execution plan for the CRI’s various communication needs and outreach programs. The overall goal of the project being to raise community awareness of climate change impacts on the local reefs and associated ecosystems and, in turn, foster behavior changes and improve stewardship of the CNMI’s reefs. Additionally, upon completion of this plan, Bailey will assist in plan implementation by developing targeted messaging for selected outreach materials/programs.

Florida • Allison Holevoet

Raised in Northwest Indiana, Allison received her B.S. in Marine Biology from the University of Rhode Island and her M.S. in Environmental and Environmental Science at the University of the Virgin Islands. As the Coral Fellow in South Florida, Allison will draw upon her background in marine ecology, coral restoration, and mangrove restoration to help allocate funding for the expansion of Florida's coral restoration and propagation efforts. This includes working with state and federal partners, as well as universities and non-government organizations to help translate ongoing research into management practices.

Guam • Sabrina Medina

Sabrina is originally from Orange County, California, and received her B.S in Marine Biology from the University of Hawaii at Manoa and her M.S. in Conservation and Restoration Science at the University of California Irvine. As the Coral Fellow in Guam, Sabrina will be compiling strategies for best practices in coral reef related outreach and education. She will focus on organizing a forum for stakeholders to discuss collaborative opportunities and foster student engagement in educational programs to involve the community in managing Guam's natural resources. Sabrina will also be supporting Guam Coral Reef Initiative in the development of related activities and assisting in coral reef conservation programs.

Hawaii • Ellie Jones

Ellie was born in Oregon, and received her B.S. in Marine Biology from the Oregon Institute of Marine Biology at the University of Oregon. She values doing work that benefits both coral reefs and the people who depend on them and has applied this over the years in her work as a science communicator and marine researcher. As the Coral Fellow for Hawai'i, Ellie will be working with the State of Hawai'i Division of Aquatic Resources focusing on water quality monitoring and management for nearshore ecosystems. She will use a ridge to reef approach for this work, engaging various watershed organizations and stakeholders to ensure a collaborative effort.

Puerto Rico • Roxana Aslan

Roxana Aslan, born and raised in Los Angeles, CA, received her B.S. in Environmental Science and Health from the University of Southern California, her Masters in Urban and Regional Planning from UCLA and her M.P.S. in Marine Biology and Ecology from the University of Miami. As the Puerto Rico Coral Fellow, Roxana will be working with the Department of Natural and Environmental Resources through the Coral Reef Program to consolidate information regarding coral rescue and restoration efforts in Puerto Rico, establish a standard operating procedure for acquiring permits relevant to each type of coral restoration effort and continue to promote awareness regarding coral reef emergency responses. She will promote continual collaborations between research, education rescue, and management groups to promote successful coral rescue and restoration efforts on the island.

US Virgin Islands • Alexandra Fireman

Originally from Washington, DC, Alex received her B.A. in Biology and Earth & Environmental Sciences from Wesleyan University and her M.S. in Marine & Estuarine Environmental Sciences from the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science. As the US Virgin Islands Coral Fellow, Alex will work with the Division of Coastal Zone Management in the St. Croix East End Marine Park (EEMP). Alex will be facilitating the Virgin Islands Restoration of Coral Squad in implementing the USVI coral restoration plan created in 2023. This will include implementation of coral rescue software, tracking progress towards restoration targets, and summarizing annual rescue efforts. She will also assist with EEMP community engagement initiatives such as Reef Week, sea turtle nesting beach patrols, seagrass patrol, and management of the park’s demonstration coral restoration site.

Return to top of page