O’Neill Appointed NY Sea Grant’s Interim Assoc. Director

Brockport, NY, February 5, 2010 – Charles R. “Chuck” O’Neill has been named New York Sea Grant’s Interim Associate Director effective February 1, 2010.“Chuck O’Neill has been with New York Sea Grant since 1981. As a coastal resources specialist, he brings a clear understanding of the environmental opportunities and challenges impacting New York’s environmental resources as well as the history of success of Sea Grant’s educational programming,” says New York Sea Grant Director James W. Ammerman.“I look forward to the opportunity to assist Director Jim Ammerman with educating stakeholders and legislators about the importance of New York Sea Grant. In nearly 30 years of environmental service, I have seen the success of the paradigm that connects New York Sea Grant’s professional educators with topnotch scientists and delivers information in a form that a wide variety of audiences can use to effectuate positive change,” O’Neill says.O’Neill says in the past year New York Sea Grant has seen success with programs that:· “teach the teachers” how to engage students in learning about shoreline science through hands-on training along the Great Lakes, distance learning programs, science exploration days and the new Exploring the Estuary! A teacher guide to the NY-NJ Harbor Estuary· connect recreational and charter fishing services with online travel audiences· educate and excite youth about ocean engineering· ensure seafood safety through good manufacturing practices and Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) education and training· educate the public about keeping pharmaceuticals out of water supplies· ensure healthy Long Island estuaries through Nonpoint Education for Municipal Officials (NYSG NEMO)· share the facts and fun of fishing with New York City and Long Island audiences· share trawling technology design and use expertise with international partners· communicate Cornell University’s Drs. Paul Bowser and James Casey’s research on ways to prevent and contain the VHS (viral hemorrhagic septicemia) virus in fish· provide a new-in-2009 Lake Ontario water levels update resource· inform audiences about the Eastern Lake Ontario Dunes and Salmon River ecosystems through a new-in-2009 stewardship blog· facilitate regional sediment management for New York’s Long Island ocean coastline· celebrate New York’s freshwater maritime heritage and scuba diving opportunities through the three-time award-winning Great Lakes Seaway Trail Shipwrecks and Dive the Seaway Trail project· network with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and specialists nationwide on climate change extension.O’Neill will continue to maintain his nationally-recognized leadership in the area of invasive species in addition to his new administrative and management responsibilities as Interim Associate Director. O’Neill is the founder of the New York Invasive Species Clearinghouse at http://nyis.info/.In addition to his service to New York Sea Grant since 1981, O’Neill’s career has included time as director of the Sullivan County Environmental Management Council and as an environmental analyst with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and Monroe County Environmental Management Council.O’Neill follows Robert Kent, who has served as Interim Associate Director since December 17, 2008, following the retirement of Dale Baker. Kent remains in his ongoing role as New York Sea Grant Marine Program Coordinator.

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