Staff

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Kate Masury

Program Director

Kate Masury is the program director at Eating with the Ecosystem. As the organization’s only full time staff member, Kate performs many roles from organizing and running educational and outreach events, to conducting research, building relationships with and coordinating with partners such as chefs, fishermen, scientists, economists, seafood businesses, and citizen scientists, to communications and graphic design. Kate is also coauthor of the cookbook, Simmering the Sea: Diversifying Cookery to Sustain Our Fisheries, as well as the recently published report, Eat Like a Fish: Diversifying New England's Seafood Marketplace. A life long seafood lover, Kate’s enthusiasm for the marine environment stemmed from her upbringing on the coast of Maine. She earned a Bachelors of Arts in Environmental Studies from College of the Holy Cross before spending five years in the non-profit world teaching marine science to students of all ages on both the east and west coast. She then decided to pursue a career that combined her passion for marine science with her love for seafood and returned to school and received her Masters of Advanced Studies in Marine Biodiversity and Conservation from Scripps Institute of Oceanography where she focused on sustainable seafood and fisheries. While lobster will always be her favorite food, she enjoys exploring the wide variety of seafood that comes out of our New England waters.

Kate can be reached by email at kate@eatingwiththeecosystem.org

 

 


Board 

Kira Stillwell  President/Treasurer  Kira grew up in Rhode Island as the daughter of a shark biologist, where she formed strong connections with the fishing community and a love of seafood. In her day job, Kira is Program Administrator at the Rhode Island Natural History Survey, where she supports the Survey's numerous programs, from wildflowers to coyotes to turtle. In her heart she is “a water girl” whose favorite ecological zone is the shore and marine environment. She brings a rich knowledge of nonprofit administration to Eating with the Ecosystem's board.

Kira Stillwell
President/Treasurer

Kira grew up in Rhode Island as the daughter of a shark biologist, where she formed strong connections with the fishing community and a love of seafood. In her day job, Kira is Program Administrator at the Rhode Island Natural History Survey, where she supports the Survey's numerous programs, from wildflowers to coyotes to turtle. In her heart she is “a water girl” whose favorite ecological zone is the shore and marine environment. She brings a rich knowledge of nonprofit administration to Eating with the Ecosystem's board.

Chris Dodge  Secretary  Chris developed a love of all things marine at an early age, bouncing between the beaches of southeastern CT and Lieutenant Island in Wellfleet, MA. He holds a BS in Marine Vertebrate Biology from Southampton College of LIU and a MS in Biology from Southern CT State University, where he has served as adjunct faculty for over two years. He has been a marine science educator for over a decade in eastern Long Island Sound and a captain for the last seven. He currently fulfills both those roles with Save the Bay, and is thrilled to now call the Ocean State home. His love of marine science and spending time in the kitchens has made Eating with the Ecosystem a perfect fit.

Chris Dodge
Secretary

Chris developed a love of all things marine at an early age, bouncing between the beaches of southeastern CT and Lieutenant Island in Wellfleet, MA. He holds a BS in Marine Vertebrate Biology from Southampton College of LIU and a MS in Biology from Southern CT State University, where he has served as adjunct faculty for over two years. He has been a marine science educator for over a decade in eastern Long Island Sound and a captain for the last seven. He currently fulfills both those roles with Save the Bay, and is thrilled to now call the Ocean State home. His love of marine science and spending time in the kitchens has made Eating with the Ecosystem a perfect fit.

 
Rodman Sykes    Rodman has been a full-time fisherman for 43 years. He fishes on his 68-foot dragger, the Virginia Marise, out of Pt. Judith, RI. Rodman is on the boards of the Point Judith Fishermen’s Memorial Foundation and the RI Commercial Fishermen’s Assocition. He also participates in collaborative research projects with Brown University. He has been invited to speak on several panels about the effects of climate change on fisheries. Rodman spoke at a private Eating with the Ecosystem dinner for the Brown Club at Hourglass Brasserie in April 2013.

Rodman Sykes

Rodman has been a full-time fisherman for 43 years. He fishes on his 68-foot dragger, the Virginia Marise, out of Pt. Judith, RI. Rodman is on the boards of the Point Judith Fishermen’s Memorial Foundation and the RI Commercial Fishermen’s Assocition. He also participates in collaborative research projects with Brown University. He has been invited to speak on several panels about the effects of climate change on fisheries. Rodman spoke at a private Eating with the Ecosystem dinner for the Brown Club at Hourglass Brasserie in April 2013.

Syma Ebbin   Syma Ebbin serves as both a professor at the University of Connecticut’s Avery Point campus and the Research Coordinator for Connecticut Sea Grant. Her research has focused on subsistence harvesting, marine spatial planning, and participatory management in coastal communities. She has served on multiple fisheries management and research committees and has worked with Native American tribes in the Pacific Northwest. During graduate school she also spent time commercially fishing in Alaska.

Syma Ebbin

Syma Ebbin serves as both a professor at the University of Connecticut’s Avery Point campus and the Research Coordinator for Connecticut Sea Grant. Her research has focused on subsistence harvesting, marine spatial planning, and participatory management in coastal communities. She has served on multiple fisheries management and research committees and has worked with Native American tribes in the Pacific Northwest. During graduate school she also spent time commercially fishing in Alaska.

 
Sharon Benjamin   Sharon has been fascinated by marine life since as long as she can remember, and is motivated by her love of the outdoors and the coastal landscape to work for a better relationship with our environment. She works as Spatial Data Analyst at NOAA Fisheries Social Sciences Branch in Woods Hole, MA, and has a master's degree in Coastal Environmental Management from Duke University's Nicholas School of the Environment. She tries to take advantage of living in beautiful Cape Cod by kayaking, birding, and occasionally fishing for bluefish.

Sharon Benjamin

Sharon has been fascinated by marine life since as long as she can remember, and is motivated by her love of the outdoors and the coastal landscape to work for a better relationship with our environment. She works as Spatial Data Analyst at NOAA Fisheries Social Sciences Branch in Woods Hole, MA, and has a master's degree in Coastal Environmental Management from Duke University's Nicholas School of the Environment. She tries to take advantage of living in beautiful Cape Cod by kayaking, birding, and occasionally fishing for bluefish.

Maria Vasta   Maria has loved the ocean for as long as she can remember, taking advantage of every opportunity to be in or around the water. Driven by a desire to help sustain New England’s vibrant coastal communities, Maria completed a B.S. in Zoology from the University of New Hampshire and a M.A. in Marine Affairs from the University of Rhode Island. She currently works as a Social Scientist contracted with the Northeast Fisheries Science Center in Woods Hole, MA. Her work there focuses on the commercial groundfish fishery, and she spends much of her time analyzing the impacts that fishing regulations have on fishermen, their families, and their communities.

Maria Vasta

Maria has loved the ocean for as long as she can remember, taking advantage of every opportunity to be in or around the water. Driven by a desire to help sustain New England’s vibrant coastal communities, Maria completed a B.S. in Zoology from the University of New Hampshire and a M.A. in Marine Affairs from the University of Rhode Island. She currently works as a Social Scientist contracted with the Northeast Fisheries Science Center in Woods Hole, MA. Her work there focuses on the commercial groundfish fishery, and she spends much of her time analyzing the impacts that fishing regulations have on fishermen, their families, and their communities.

 
Elizabeth Blank   Elizabeth grew up on Aquidneck Island where she developed an interest in issues concerning her local coastal community at an early age. Her interests led her to earn a B.S. in Biology from Boston University before she sought to apply her scientific knowledge in a legal application. Thereafter she moved back to Rhode Island to pursue a dual degree in law from Roger Williams University School of Law as well as earning a M.A. in Marine Affairs from the University of Rhode Island. Now a full-time Newporter, she is a Commissioner on the Newport Energy and Environment Commission and a lawyer by day.

Elizabeth Blank

Elizabeth grew up on Aquidneck Island where she developed an interest in issues concerning her local coastal community at an early age. Her interests led her to earn a B.S. in Biology from Boston University before she sought to apply her scientific knowledge in a legal application. Thereafter she moved back to Rhode Island to pursue a dual degree in law from Roger Williams University School of Law as well as earning a M.A. in Marine Affairs from the University of Rhode Island. Now a full-time Newporter, she is a Commissioner on the Newport Energy and Environment Commission and a lawyer by day.

Chase Hogoboom    Chase believes that many of our world’s problems would be solved if people simply ate the foods they are supposed to eat. As Co-Founder and past President of Farm Fresh Rhode Island Chase enjoyed learning about, identifying and developing purposeful, sustainable, and local food systems; he spawns this passion and experience at Eating with the Ecosystem. As president of Goetz Composites, Chase’s professional career has been symbiotic with the ocean, including the development and production of 6,000 m (19,685 ft) depth Unmanned Underwater Vehicles (UUV) and zero emissions watercraft.

Chase Hogoboom

Chase believes that many of our world’s problems would be solved if people simply ate the foods they are supposed to eat. As Co-Founder and past President of Farm Fresh Rhode Island Chase enjoyed learning about, identifying and developing purposeful, sustainable, and local food systems; he spawns this passion and experience at Eating with the Ecosystem. As president of Goetz Composites, Chase’s professional career has been symbiotic with the ocean, including the development and production of 6,000 m (19,685 ft) depth Unmanned Underwater Vehicles (UUV) and zero emissions watercraft.

 
Ken Payne   Ken Payne is currently president of the Civil Alliance for a Cooler Rhode Island and a founding member of the Rhode Island Green New Deal – Research Council; he is also on the board and executive committee of the Rhode Island Public Health Institute, and a member of the network team and the steering committee of Food Solutions New England. He serves on the national Council on Agriculture Research Extension and Teaching. He was administrator of the RI Agricultural Partnership from 2012 -2017 and was chairperson of the RI Food Policy Council from 2014 through 2016.  His public service includes serving as chairman of the Distribute Generation Board (2013- March 2019), administrator of the RI Office of Energy Resources (2010 -2011), senior policy advisor to the Rhode Island Senate (1997-2007), federal projects coordinator for Unites Senator Claiborne Pell (1988-1996), executive director of the Rhode Island League of Cities and Towns (1977-1986), and executive director of the Blackstone Valley Council of Governments (1974-1977).  He has a Ph.D. in regional planning from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and earned a BA in history and a master’s degree in Community Planning at the University of Rhode Island.

Ken Payne

Ken Payne is currently president of the Civil Alliance for a Cooler Rhode Island and a founding member of the Rhode Island Green New Deal – Research Council; he is also on the board and executive committee of the Rhode Island Public Health Institute, and a member of the network team and the steering committee of Food Solutions New England. He serves on the national Council on Agriculture Research Extension and Teaching. He was administrator of the RI Agricultural Partnership from 2012 -2017 and was chairperson of the RI Food Policy Council from 2014 through 2016.

His public service includes serving as chairman of the Distribute Generation Board (2013- March 2019), administrator of the RI Office of Energy Resources (2010 -2011), senior policy advisor to the Rhode Island Senate (1997-2007), federal projects coordinator for Unites Senator Claiborne Pell (1988-1996), executive director of the Rhode Island League of Cities and Towns (1977-1986), and executive director of the Blackstone Valley Council of Governments (1974-1977).

He has a Ph.D. in regional planning from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and earned a BA in history and a master’s degree in Community Planning at the University of Rhode Island.

Margot Wilsterman   Margot grew up on Cape Cod fishing with her mother and father. From a young age, she was hooked by the incredible diversity of fishes living in the waters around her. After graduating from Connecticut College, Margot worked in sustainable seafood sales in New York City. She is currently working towards her Master’s degree in Marine Science and Technology from the University of Massachusetts in Dartmouth. Her main interests are diversifying seafood markets and educating consumers about underutilized species. In her spare time, Margot loves to explore different methods of fish cookery.

Margot Wilsterman

Margot grew up on Cape Cod fishing with her mother and father. From a young age, she was hooked by the incredible diversity of fishes living in the waters around her. After graduating from Connecticut College, Margot worked in sustainable seafood sales in New York City. She is currently working towards her Master’s degree in Marine Science and Technology from the University of Massachusetts in Dartmouth. Her main interests are diversifying seafood markets and educating consumers about underutilized species. In her spare time, Margot loves to explore different methods of fish cookery.

Cathy Pedtke   Cathy comes from a culinary background, with a Bachelor's in Culinary Arts & Restaurant Management from Paul Smith's College, and a Master's in Gastronomy from Boston University. She is now focused on issues of food equity and sustainability, and works as Education Coordinator for the Boston-based nonprofit Lovin' Spoonfuls. Always on the lookout for new foods to try, Cathy was really excited to explore the seafood scene in Boston, and jumped at the chance to join Eating with the Ecosystem's Citizen Science project in 2017. She got completely hooked on sustainable and underutilized seafood, and had to get more involved. Grilled bluefish is her favorite seafood dish, followed closely by scup ceviche and stuffed squid.

Cathy Pedtke

Cathy comes from a culinary background, with a Bachelor's in Culinary Arts & Restaurant Management from Paul Smith's College, and a Master's in Gastronomy from Boston University. She is now focused on issues of food equity and sustainability, and works as Education Coordinator for the Boston-based nonprofit Lovin' Spoonfuls. Always on the lookout for new foods to try, Cathy was really excited to explore the seafood scene in Boston, and jumped at the chance to join Eating with the Ecosystem's Citizen Science project in 2017. She got completely hooked on sustainable and underutilized seafood, and had to get more involved. Grilled bluefish is her favorite seafood dish, followed closely by scup ceviche and stuffed squid.

 

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Eating with the Ecosystem's Advisory NETwork consists of fishermen, chefs, supply chain businesses, scientists, and other issue experts who share our our vision and offer guidance towards creating a New England seafood system that supports regional ecosystems and the people who depend on them. 

Fishermen

  • AARON GEWIRTZ - F/V Nancy Beth, Point Judith, RI

  • AL EAGLES - F/V Katherine Ann, Newport, RI

  • CHRIS MORRIS - Hoxsie Fish Trap, Point Judith, RI

  • DAWN MCALISTER - End O'Main Lobster, Wickford, RI

  • DOUG FEENEY - F/V Noah, Chatham, MA

  • KATIE EAGAN- Bristol, RI

  • MIKE MARCHETTI - F/V Mister G, F/V Captain Robert, Point Judith, RI

  • PJ RUSSO - F/V Steel Pulse, Bristol, RI

  • SARAH SCHUMANN - Warren, RI

 

Seafood Supply Chain Businesses

  • JARED AUERBACH- Red's Best, Boston, MA

  • MARK PIRRI- Tony's Seafood, Warren, RI

  • STU METZLER- Fearless Fish Market, Providence RI

  • TOM LAFAZIA- Narragansett Bay Lobsters, Narragansett, RI

  • VALERIE ROSENBERG- Red's Best, Boston, MA

Scientists and Researchers

  • GAVIN FAY- School for Marine Science and Technology, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth

  • HIRO UCHIDA- Dept. of Environmental and Natural Resource Economics, University of Rhode Island

  • JEREMY COLLIE- Graduate School of Oceanography, University of Rhode Island

  • JOE ZOTTOLI- Graduate School of Oceanography, University of Rhode Island

  • JOHN MANDERSON- NOAA/NEFSC Oceans & Climate & Cooperative Research Programs

Chefs

  • ANDREW MCQUESTEN- North, Providence, RI

  • ANDY TEIXEIRA- Brix Restaurant, Newport Vineyards, Newport, RI

  • ASHLEY VANASSE- Easy Entertaining Inc., Providence, RI

  • CHRIS JONES- The Mooring, Newport, RI

  • CRAIG HUTCHINSON- Olmo, New Haven CT

  • DAVE SNOW- Stoneacre Brasserie, Newport, RI

  • DEREK WAGNER- Nick's on Broadway, Providence, RI

  • GILL STANSFIELD- Johnson & Wales University, Providence RI

  • GREG COCCIO- Avvio Ristorante, Cranston RI

  • HENRY BOUSQUET- Greater New Bedford Regional Vocational Technical High School, New Bedford MA

  • JASON HEGEDUS- Dune Brother's Seafood, Providence, RI

  • JASON TIMOTHY- Troop and Laughing Gorilla Catering, Providence, RI

  • JON CAMBRA- Roger Williams Univeristy, Bristol RI

  • JOSHUA RIAZI- Ripe Hospitality and the Genesis Center, Providence, RI

  • LISA LOFBERG- Little Moss Restaurant, Dartmouth, MA

  • KRISTOFER HARDING- Harding Catering, Amesbury, MA

  • KYLE HENDERSON- Oberlin, Providence RI

  • MATT TORTORA- What's Good, Providence RI

  • MAX PETERSON- Hemenway's Restaurant, Providence, RI

  • MIKE MELLO- M & C Cafe, New Bedford, MA

  • NICK GILLESPIE- Dune Brother's Seafood, Providence, RI

  • NOAH METNICK- Waterman Grille, Providence RI

  • RICH SILVIA- White Horse Tavern, Newport, RI

  • RIZWAN AHMED- Johnson & Wales University, Providence, RI

  • SAMANTHA KUNDRAT- North, Providence, RI & Blackfish Cape Cod, Wellfleet, MA