MEET THE TAMPA BAY WATCH CREW

Peter Clark, President

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Peter A. Clark is the founder and President of Tampa Bay Watch. Under his watch, the organization has coordinated more than 100,000 volunteers, installed 10,000 oyster reef units and 1,200 tons of oyster shell to create more than two miles of oyster shell reef communities, planted more than 1,000,000 salt marsh grasses to restore 200 acres of coastal tidal ponds to Tampa Bay. In 2005, Tampa Bay Watch completed construction of the $4 million marine and education center in Tierra Verde, Florida. Until 1993, Mr. Clark served as Director of the Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council's Agency on Bay Management, an alliance of agencies charged with protecting the Bay. Mr. Clark has a BS in Marine Biology and over fifty professional publications on natural resource restoration, water quality and environmental planning. Mr. Clark also initiated the nomination, which ultimately led to the designation, of Tampa Bay into the EPA's National Estuary Program. Mr. Clark holds a US Coast Guard Captains License, received the Outstanding Environmentalist of the Year award from the Florida Marine Research Institute Environmental Excellence Awards program in 1994, and the NOAA Fisheries / American Fisheries Society Nancy Foster Habitat Conservation Award in 2005.

 

John Anderson, Groundskeeper

John Anderson was introduced to Tampa Bay Watch through its volunteer programs and ended up in the oyster dome program. John won the position of part-time grounds keeper in mid-December 2012. John's background includes being a hardhat construction worker, a stockbroker and picking up a B.A. in Zoology along the way. The stated goals of Tampa Bay Watch give John, a native Floridian, something he can enjoy working for and believing in. Hobbies include writing, martial arts, and snow skiing.

 

 

 

Pamela Arbisi, Director of Development

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Pamela Arbisi joined Tampa Bay Watch, Inc. in 2017 as the Development Director. Her responsibilities include stewardship of corporate and individual support, major gifts, donor acquisition and business development. Pamela has an extensive background in the nonprofit sector spanning over 15 years. Her passion for this industry took hold when she  realized the positive impact she could make in the community through her efforts of advocating for cause. Pamela majored in Business Administration at St. Pete College and USF. When not in the office, she enjoys traveling, boating, gardening, and cooking with her family and friends.

 

Rachel Arndt, Communications Manager

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Rachel Arndt has worked on Tampa Bay Watch communications since 2007. Her primary responsibilities include coordinating volunteers through weekly announcement of activities, writing the quarterly newsletter and gaining media interest for restoration projects. She has lived the majority of her life in Florida. Rachel received her undergraduate degree from the University of Florida and graduate degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has a wealth of working experience with non-profit and governmental agencies. Rachel is a runner and enjoys jogging along the downtown St. Pete waterfront and the Pinellas Trail. She is an avid sports fan and follows all of the local teams, especially the Florida Gators.

 

Jordan Findley, Education Specialist

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Jordan joined the Tampa Bay Watch team in September 2016 as an Education Specialist. She is involved in the Estuary EDventures education programs and Tampa Bay Watch Summer Camp. Jordan received a B.A. in Zoology from Miami University and will soon be earning her Master’s in Biology. She comes from a background of various experiences in the biological field, including environmental consulting, animal husbandry, wildlife rehabilitation, and environmental education. Her passion is nature, and in her free time she can usually be found outdoors, hiking, kayaking, fishing, swimming, or camping.

 

Matt Flynn, Environmental Specialist

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Matt started working with Tampa Bay Watch in June 2017 as a full-time Environmental Specialist helping to coordinate and facilitate the Bay Grasses in Classes program. He received a degree in marine science from Eckerd College with a biology track as well as a music minor. Among many other things, he has been involved with aquaculture monitoring in the Republic of Palau, coral reef ecology in the Roatan Peninsula and sargassum research aboard SSV Corwith-Cramer in the Sargasso Sea. He is also greatly interested in sustainability and is in the process of building an off-grid tiny house on a trailer in which he plans to live. An ex-flying trapeze instructor and springboard-diving high school All-American, his time off is filled with acrobatics as well as performing guitar, flute, bass, and vocals at local bars and restaurants.

 

Madison Frank, Development and Administrative Coordinator

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Madison Frank joined Tampa Bay Watch, Inc. in 2017 as the Development and Administrative Coordinator. Her responsibilities include assisting with the planning, development, and organization of special events. She also assists with the stewardship of corporate and individual support, major gifts, donor acquisition, and overall business development. Madison is a people-person through and through who has spent her entire professional career helping to grow businesses and interacting with patrons. She has extensive experience in the high-end retail space and most recently worked in the buying field for Home Shopping Network for the Fine Jewelry department. She graduated from Florida State University with a BS in Retail Merchandising and Product Development. Madison spends her off time kickboxing, enjoying the local scene in downtown St. Petersburg, hanging out with her beloved dachshund, Lucy, and embracing her Italian roots in the kitchen.

 

Melanie Grillone, GIS/Environmental Specialist

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Melanie joined Tampa Bay Watch in 2015, and is responsible for the management and creation of all GIS data and restoration maps. She assists in various habitat restoration efforts and oversees the Storm Drain Marking program. With a fiery passion to inspire environmental stewards for the protection of our waterways and wildlife, she is chair for Surfrider’s Suncoast Rise Above Plastics Coalition, aiming to reduce marine debris and our reliance on single-use plastics. Graduating from Millersville University of Pennsylvania, she holds a B.S. in Biology with minors in Marine Biology and Animal Behavior. She enjoys exploring all that the sunshine state has to offer and singing karaoke to her cat, Prim.

 

Serra Herndon, Habitat Restoration Director

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Serra joined the Tampa Bay Watch team in May 2006. She holds a Master of Marine Affairs degree from the University of Washington and B.S. in Environmental Science from the University of Oregon. In addition to being the Habitat Restoration Director, Serra manages the oyster restoration program, the seagrass transplanting program, and the derelict crab trap program. In her free time, Serra enjoys spending time running around after her daughter, hanging out with family and friends, and enjoying the estuaries and beaches she is working to protect.

 

Jill Kunesh, Office Administrator

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Jill was born and raised in the Chicago area and with a bachelor’s degree in marketing from University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana, and is an avid Chicago Bears fan. Before joining the Tampa Bay Watch team, she worked for a few large corporations as Credit Manager and Cash Applications & Billing Manager. Jill got her start with TBW by doing volunteer clerical work and has been on the team as the Office Administrator for since 2012. She loves kayaking, bike riding, and sea turtles. She is very involved in sea turtle volunteer work and has partnered with the Sea Turtle Conservancy to get turtle-friendly lighting retrofits completed at several condo and hotel properties on St. Pete Beach.

 

Andy Lykens, Environmental Scientist

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Andy got his start with Tampa Bay Watch in 2007 as an environmental intern. Upon his graduation from Eckerd College in 2008 with a degree in Environmental Studies, he began working full time with Tampa Bay Watch in the Estuary EDventures education program. Recently, Andy's passion for marine and habitat restoration practices led him to his current position with the organization, Environmental Scientist, where he conducts oyster shell bar restoration projects, seagrass restoration projects, and scallop restoration projects, among other duties. In his free time, Andy loves standup paddle boarding, snorkeling, fossil shark tooth hunting, and fishing.

 

Katie Mastenbrook, Director of Education

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Katie Mastenbrook runs the Marine Education Center at Tampa Bay Watch.  She is in charge of the Estuary EDventures field trip programs and Tampa Bay Watch Summer Camp. She joined Tampa Bay Watch in September 2014 bringing with her more than seven years of experience in the Marine Science and Environmental Science field. She has held instructional and coordinator positions at the Newfound Harbor Marine Institute, MarineLab, FWC Florida Youth Conservation Centers Network, and was even a state park ranger. Katie received a B.S. Degree in Marine Science, with a minor in Environmental Science from Coastal Carolina University. She holds a USCG Master Captain License and loves spending time out on the water.

 

Audrey Mitchell, Marine Science Educator

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Audrey joined Tampa Bay Watch in September 2016 as a part-time Marine Science Educator and joined the crew full-time Spring 2017. She is involved in the Estuary EDventures education programs and Tampa Bay Watch Summer Camp. Audrey received a Bachelor of Science in Marine Biology from Auburn University and aspires to continue her education in her field. She is truly passionate about educating people of the importance of preserving and restoring our bays and oceans. In her off time she can usually be found out on the water or beach; she also enjoys reading, painting, and her cat Manu.

 

Ian Pike, Membership Coordinator

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Ian Pike began at Tampa Bay Watch in 2017 as a Membership Coordinator where he oversees the cultivation, retention, and stewardship of our members and works to continue growing Tampa Bay Watch’s membership base. After graduating from The New School University in New York City, Ian spent the next four years working in membership and fundraising for Rainforest Alliance, an international nonprofit organization. Ian moved to Florida in 2016 to escape the cold winters and be in a place where he can scuba dive year-round. When he’s not restoring the waterways, or diving in them, Ian enjoys baking bread and cooking authentic Thai cuisine for family and friends.

 

Eric Plage, Environmental Specialist

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Eric Plage graduated from Eckerd College in 2007 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Environmental Science and a minor in Geology. Here at Tampa Bay Watch, he facilitates our Oyster Dome Program. He also facilitates the Oyster Bar programs presently taking place at Honeymoon Island and MacDill Airforce Base. He has a passion for the outdoors and can be found most weekends fishing, birding, kayaking, or boating around the Tampa Bay area.

 

 

Melinda Spall, Environmental Specialist

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Melinda Spall joined the Tampa Bay Watch team in 2011. Melinda manages the Bay Grasses in Classes program where she enjoys planting native species while molding the environmental stewards of the future. She also manages our regional monofilament recycling program, with seasonal cleanups and close to 200 “monotubes” recycling an estimated 1,000,000 feet annually. She graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelor’s degree in Geology. She comes from a background of diverse experiences in the environmental field, including environmental consulting, water quality sampling, springshed delineation, and community outreach/environmental education.  As a Tampa Bay area native, she loves any time spent in the sunshine and near the water.

 

 

Michelle Yepez,  Special Events Manager

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Michelle joined Tampa Bay Watch in 2014 to help Tampa Bay Watch raise awareness through special events including the Bay Life art show, Annual Evening for the Bay dinner and auction, and Ed Alber Tarpon Rodeo all-release tournament. She has nearly two decades of experience in hospitality relations and events, as well as degrees in elementary education from Miami Dade College and hospitality/technology management from the University of South Florida. A Florida native, Michelle advocates for conservation and sustainability and loves being outdoors shelling, camping, and discovering Florida's best-kept secrets with her husband, two vibrant sons, and beautiful daughter.

 

Rachel Zafar, Administrative Assistant

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Rachel Zafar joined the Tampa Bay Watch team in 2015 as the Administrative Assistant. Interested in marine life conservation and new to the area from New Jersey, Rachel discovered Tampa Bay Watch while researching volunteer opportunities nearby. She earned a B.A. in International Relations from the University of Delaware, and she worked in project management in the logistics industry prior to moving to Florida. In her free time, Rachel loves traveling, gardening, and spending time at the beach.

 

Jon Ziegler, Bay View Community Room Coordinator

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Jon came on board with Tampa Bay Watch in 2015. Originally from Illinois, he moved to Florida in 2005 to escape the cold winters and be closer to his family. Jon is our Bay View Community Room coordinator, planning the weddings that take place here at Tampa Bay Watch. When not planning weddings, Jon enjoys gardening, cooking and playing with his dogs.

©TAMPA BAY WATCH, INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

3000 Pinellas Bayway South, Tierra Verde, FL 33715

Tel: 727-867-8166 | Fax: 727-867-8188

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