Dillingham gets new Marine Advisory Program agent
DILLINGHAM, Alaska—Seafood industry expert Liz Brown began work July 1 as the new Marine Advisory Program agent in Dillingham, Alaska. The Marine Advisory Program is the statewide community extension service of the University of Alaska Fairbanks School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences.
No stranger to coastal Alaska, Brown has spent more than two decades working with the seafood processing industry in Kodiak, Cordova, and Ketchikan, and on floating processors from St. Matthew Island to Prince William Sound. Most recently, Brown served as the environmental health officer with the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) in Unalaska, Alaska.
Before becoming a health inspector, Brown was the director of Sheldon Jackson College's Seafood Technology Program in Sitka, Alaska. Through a cooperative agreement between Sheldon Jackson College and the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Brown also previously held the position of seafood technology specialist with the Marine Advisory Program.
Brown says her role in Bristol Bay will include seafood technology, but she will also provide a variety of marine and fisheries technical assistance and information to the Bristol Bay region.
"It's important that people let me know how I and the rest of the MAP program can best serve them," Brown said. "My office is open and I'm looking forward to meeting people and listening to the issues that concern them."
Brown has a master's degree in marine resource management from Oregon State University's College of Oceanography. Her professional interests include seafood quality assurance, processing regulations, and plant safety issues. Brown's first project will be to write a series of guides to help processors understand the complicated Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) regulations and requirements governing seafood handling and processing.
"Many of the boats I inspected while working as a health inspector for DEC were run by people who were great at fishing and processing but were intimidated by the alphabet soup that regulations sometimes produce," said Brown. "The guides I'm writing will help demystify these regulations."
Brown said she also plans to write several fact sheets on seafood topics, including the use of additives, the problem of parasites in seafood, and water quality.
Drawing on her experiences at Sheldon Jackson College, Brown plans to offer seafood technology training courses at the UAF Bristol Bay Campus and the Southwest Vocational Center in Naknek, Alaska.