Professor, Associate Leader and Aquaculture Specialist, UAF
Ray retired from the University of Alaska in October 2015.
My primary focus is to provide educational and technical assistance to Alaska's aquaculture industry. I also participate in applied research related to the industry.
My expertise is in salmon and shellfish aquaculture. In addition, I work with research and outreach efforts in the areas of harmful algal blooms; watershed education, monitoring, and rehabilitation; and water quality monitoring. With experience as an elementary school teacher, I dedicate effort to teaching whenever time is available to K–12 marine education.
Since 1978, I have been engaged directly with supporting the Alaska aquaculture industry. Beginning as a trainer for salmon hatchery technicians with Sheldon Jackson College in Sitka, Alaska, I now enjoy the privilege of working with my former students has colleagues in the salmon ranching program. My shellfish effort began seriously in the mid-1980s and continues. I left Alaska for three years and worked developing a large volunteer effort to work on salmon habitat rehabilitation for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, and I bring that experience to my efforts in salmon habitat protection and restoration in Alaska.
- Western Regional Aquaculture Consortium extension committee
- Board of Directors Pacific Aquaculture Caucus
- Member World Aquaculture Association
- Member National Shellfisheries Association
- B.S. Fisheries, Oregon State University
- B.S. Education, Portland State University
- M.S. Fisheries, University of Idaho
Most recent funded projects:
- Aquaculture development for Southeast Alaska
- Purple hinge rock scallop growout project
- Blue mussel aquaculture for Kachemak Bay
- Alaska oyster quality and marketing study
- Paralytic shellfish poisoning monitoring and outreach
- Capacity building for Alaska Native communities — Water quality monitoring
What I like about living in Alaska
Alaska is, as the Athabaskan Natives say—Alyeska, the great land. It is a vast, wild, and beautiful land. The seas are pristine and abundant with fish and wildlife. Alaska has the nation's longest coastline and produces the majority of American's fish harvest. For aquaculture, the vastness of coastal waters for shellfish culture is difficult to comprehend. Alaska is truly a land of opportunity for investing in the seafood industry
What I do for fun
Like many Alaskans, I fish and hunt. However, being in a country where the wilderness is literally at my back door, my family and I take the opportunity to enjoy the beauty and wildness of this great land by hiking, camping, and being on the waters.
A favorite Alaska memory
My favorite Alaska memories are the many opportunities as a biologist that I have spent with my family exploring tide pools, on the water watching whales, or in the forests relishing the lushness and variety of its plants and flowers. These are the times I remember most and likely the reason why my family, now grown, remain Alaskans
Why I love my job
As faculty member in the public service unit of the School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences Sea Grant Program I feel I have the best position in the university. I have the opportunity to interact with talented and motivated citizens working to make a living and raise their families by utilizing Alaska's marine resources. To have the opportunity to provide information that has a real and immediate benefit to the aquaculture industry is particularly rewarding. My Marine Advisory Program colleagues provide inspiration and support that originate from hearts of service. Their professionalism and dedication are a continuing source of inspiration for me to do the best that I can to support Alaskans in their effort toward development of a sustainable aquaculture industry.