About me

Introduction I stepped into the world of right whales in 1985 when I began an unpaid internship at the Center for Coastal Studies in Provincetown, Mass. I’m from Wisconsin, and I knew nothing about right whales, or any whales for that matter. I spent the next few months in a crash course of "learning through experience (and lots of reading)". My project that summer was focused on right whales and their food (zooplankton), which I found incredibly interesting. The summer ended but I stayed on, and what began as an internship became a wonderful--and very unexpected--career. In 1994, I came to work with the Right Whale Program at New England Aquarium. By that time, I’d left the right whale foraging studies behind but found my niche in the photo-identification of individuals. The ability to tell one right whale from another adds so much to my appreciation of the species. To follow a single whale from habitat to habitat, maybe seeing it first as a calf, then years later with a calf of it’s own, is like peering through a window into another world.