February/March 2019
Greetings from GCOOS
We’re gearing up for the GCOOS annual meeting in New Orleans on April 4. It will be a great meeting with plenty of time for networking with the Gulf ocean observing community, as well as learning about the latest Gulf news from U.S. IOOS Director Carl Gouldman; the National Academies Gulf Research Program Executive Director Lauren Augustine; Dr. Bill Burnette, Deputy Commander and Technical Director to the Commander Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command and others. You’ll also have the opportunity to hear how GCOOS is supporting the ocean observing community and ensuring that we’re providing the optimal data and communication services and products.

During the meeting, we’ll also be celebrating the addition of some new ocean observing assets in the Gulf!

Use the links below to register for the meeting and special room rates.

I also want to offer a special invitation for you — or a colleague — to join our Board of Directors. We have a great team and are doing great things to advance our ocean observing mission. Details about serving on the board are below and nominations close at the end of the day on March 1 — that's tomorrow! 

Until next month!

Make Your Nominations Now: GCOOS Board of Directors
Nominations for the GCOOS Board of Directors will close at 5 p.m. (CST), Friday, March 1, 2019 — that's tomorrow!

The Board seeks colleagues interested in and committed to working within an organization dedicated to provide data, information and products to the Gulf of Mexico stakeholder community.
  • Setting policy for the organization and providing direction to the Executive Director, including bylaws revisions as necessary;
  • Establishing and maintaining the structure of the Regional Association, including approval of appointments to Councils, Committees, Task Teams or other groups;
  • Approving budgets, the business model, proposals and endorsements requested by members for proposals they intend to submit.

Board Service:
  • 3-year terms
  • Two annual, in-person meetings and phone meetings every two months (the Board may also be called to meet when priority situations arise);
  • Directors are not paid but expenses related to GCOOS travel are reimbursed
  • Self-nominations are welcome.

Register Now for the Annual GCOOS Members Meeting
The GCOOS Board of Directors will be hosting the organization's annual members meeting from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Thursday, April 4, 2019, at the  Renaissance New Orleans Pere Marquette  in downtown New Orleans. All interested participants are welcome to attend, but must register in advance (registration is free and breakfast/lunch are provided).

Human Health & Safety
Latest Generation Algae-Detection Tools
Did you know that GCOOS is leading the way in next-gen toxic algae detection? Our smartphone microscope — called “HABscope” — was created by GCOOS product developer Bob Currier and uses AI technology to recognize the toxic algae Karenia brevis in water samples.
Using this tool, combined with other water sampling methods, we’re also developing a red tide respiratory forecast based on these and other measures for Florida’s Gulf Coast. This experimental forecast, now operating in Pinellas County but expected to expand, was developed by NOAA’s National Ocean Service in partnership with GCOOS, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission-Fish and Wildlife Research Institute (FWC-FWRI) and Pinellas County Environmental Management thanks to funding from the NASA Health and Air Quality Program.

Bob Currier, left, recently showcased HABscope during a “Salty Topics” talk at the Weedon Island Preserve Cultural and Natural History Center in St. Pete, Florida.
Healthy Ecosystems & Living Resources
Tracking Invasive Gulf Species
National Invasive Species Awareness Week is Feb. 25-March 3. According to the National Wildlife Federation, some 42 percent of threatened or endangered species are at risk because of invasives.
GCOOS has datasets that track the movement of two of the Gulf’s most highly invasive species: lionfish and Asian tiger shrimp. Our interactive products include layers and tools for users to customize the maps to see how observations of these two species have increased and spread across the Gulf over recent decades.

GOMA All Hands Meeting Registration Opens
Registration for the Gulf of Mexico Alliance All-Hands meeting Jun 10-13 at the Lodge at Gulf State Park in Gulf Shores Alabama is now open.
The annual meeting addresses GOMA’s six priority issues: coastal resiliency, data and monitoring, education and engagement, habitat resources, water resources and wildlife and fisheries as well as issues common to the five Gulf states. GCOOS is a meeting sponsor.

C-SCAMP Update
The Continental Shelf Characterization, Assessment and Mapping Project (C-SCAMP) steering committee met in February to showcase project successes and discuss next steps. This team of oceanographers, fisheries scientists, geologists, data managers and engineers is adding to the body of knowledge on essential reef fish and sea turtle habitat on the West Florida Shelf and has nearly doubled previous mapping efforts in this area.

U.S. HAB Symposium Website is Live
The 10th US Symposium on Harmful Algae is Nov. 3-7 at the Perdido Beach Resort in Orange Beach, Alabama. It will focus on emerging HABs in the U.S., crossing the land-sea interface in temperate and subtropical zones in the face of climate change and shifting land use. Travel awards for some participants are available.

Notable Dates:
  • Call for Abstracts: March 15
  • Deadline for Early Bird Registration: Aug. 15
  • Deadline for Abstract Deadline: Aug. 31
  • Standard Registration Rate Begins: Sept. 1

New Coral Disease Coordinator
Florida Sea Grant has named Maurizio Martinelli, a former national coral reef management fellow with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, as its new coral disease response coordinator. Martinelli will be steering the state’s collective response to stony coral tissue loss disease, which has plagued Florida’s 360-mile-long reef tract since 2014.

Coastal Hazards
2019 Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill & Ecosystem Science Conference is a Wrap
The 2019 oil spill conference was a great success and it was wonderful seeing so many GCOOS-ers during the week. Board members who presented/attended included Steve Buschang, Stephan Howden, Nancy Rabalais, Alyssa Dausman, Ruth Perry, Kirsten Larsen and Nick Shay.
Of course, GCOOS was there, presenting during the Tools Cafe and doing plenty of networking!

If you missed the meeting but want to know more, session moderators submitted summaries at the conclusion of their respective sessions; the summaries are now available and will be incorporated into the 2019 Conference Report.

New Idea: Ocean Observing System Develops Tsunami Evacuation Route App
GCOOS is one of 11 regional observing systems under the umbrella of the U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS). One of our sister systems — NANOOS — recently unveiled a new app designed to help people know in advance whether they need to evacuate in the face of tsunami warnings.

Restoration Resources
In 2010, the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon resulted in the largest man-made disaster in U.S. history. Today, each Gulf state administers restoration funds and programs. Additionally, other agencies and organizations are also tasked with administering programs designed to restore Gulf habitats and better understand Gulf ecosystems.

Marine Operations
State of Ocean Sensing Technology
The Alliance for Coastal Technologies — a partnership of research institutions, resource managers and private sector companies dedicated to fostering the development and adoption of effective and reliable sensors and platforms for use in coastal, freshwater and ocean environments — has released two new workshop reports:

New Marine Technology Society Executive Director
MTS has appointed Kathleen Herndon, Ph.D., as its Executive Director. Herdon has an extensive background in research and program evaluation and more than 10 years of experience in the nonprofit sector.

Long-Term Change
GCAN in Action
Jen Vreeland-Dawson, GCOOS Coordinator of the Gulf of Mexico Ocean Acidification Network, recently attended the Ocean Conservancy's Shellfish Grower Information Exchange Workshop that took place in conjunction with the third Oyster South Symposium. GCAN’s role is to identify direct and indirect impacts of ocean acidification on the Gulf of Mexico’s large marine ecosystem and to develop strategies to mitigate these impacts by fostering collaborations and increasing ocean observations across the region.

Job Opportunities
GCOOS maintains a jobs listing for positions and fellowships in the ocean observing community. Want to advertise a position? Email Laura Caldwell
  • University of Southern Mississippi: full-time, nine-month, tenure-track position as an assistant professor in Geological Oceanography
  • University of Florida: Ph.D. assistantship
  • VIMS: Postdoctoral research associates
  • Smithsonian Institution and University of Washington: Postdoctoral scholar
  • NASGRP: Science policy fellow

Funding Opportunities
GCOOS maintains a listing of funding opportunities. Have an opportunity you'd like to advertise? Email Laura Caldwell


11-14: Coastal GeoTools: Building on the Past to Create a Better Future , Kingston Plantation, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

Feb. 23-March 4: ASLO 2019 Aquatic Sciences Meeting , PlanetWater, Challenges and Successes, San Juan, Puerto Rico.
19-20: NOAA 2019 Emerging Technologies Workshop , at the NOAA Center for Weather and Climate Prediction (NCWCP) in College Park, Maryland
4: Annual GCOOS Members Meeting , 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Renaissance New Orleans Pere Marquette in downtown New Orleans. All interested participants are welcome to attend, but must register in advance (registration is free and breakfast/lunch are provided).
10-13: GOMA All-Hands Meeting, The Lodge, Gulf State Park, Gulf Shores, Alabama.
3-7: 2019 CERF 25th Biennial Conference, Mobile Convention Center, Mobile, AL. C onnecting science and society in the collective goals of preserving coastal and estuarine habitats, resources and heritage . Registration to open in February 2019. Abstract submission deadline May 1.
Contact Us
GCOOS is the Gulf of Mexico regional component of the U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS). Our mission is to provide timely, reliable and accurate information on the open ocean and coastal ocean waters of the Gulf of Mexico to ensure a healthy, clean, productive ocean and resilient coastal zone.

Share Your News
Meeting, job or funding announcement? Email Laura Caldwell .

Do you have news about a project? Email Nadine Slimak .
Dr. Barbara Kirkpatrick , Executive Director • Dr. Chris Simoniello , Outreach & Education Coordinator •  Felimon Gayanilo , Interim DMAC Manager • Dr. Shinichi Kobara , Assistant Research Scientist, Product Developer •   Bob Currier, Research Specialist, Product Developer • Marion Stoessel , Senior Research Associate • Dr. Steven Baum, Associate Research Scientist Jennifer Vreeland-Dawson , Research Associate •  Grant Craig , Program Coordinator • Nadine Slimak , Public Relations & Content Marketing, Vetted Communications, LLC • Laura Caldwell , Staff Assistant • Dr. Chuan-Yuan Hsu , Post Doctoral Research Associate • Akshitha Gurrala , Graduate Research Assistant • Robbie Iles, Graduate Research Assistant
info@gcoos.org 979.847.8879
In Memoriam: Matt Howard, 1952-2018