Staff

Kelly Harrell
kelly_staffpageExecutive Director
kelly@akmarine.org // 907.277.5360

Kelly’s strong passion for the ocean was ignited at a young age growing up in coastal Virginia where she fished, crabbed, boated, and spent many hours on the beach. Part of Kelly’s family hails from a small fishing village in the Outer Banks of North Carolina, where they instilled in Kelly a strong connection to and understanding of the livelihoods of fishermen and small coastal communities. Arriving in Alaska during the summer of 2005, Kelly was an intern with AMCC through the Alaska Conservation Foundation’s internship program and knew immediately that she had found her new home. Since that time, she has directed AMCC’s Friends of Bristol Bay program and has served as Executive Director since 2010.

Kelly holds a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and political science from Virginia Tech, and completed graduate work in fisheries policy at the University of British Columbia. She received her MBA with a focus in entrepreneurship and leadership at the University of Alaska in 2015. Kelly serves on the Alaska Sea Grant advisory committee, the steering committee for the Community Fisheries Network, and advisory board for localcatch.org.


Shannon Carroll
Deputy Director
shannon@akmarine.org // 907.277.5357IMG_0406

Shannon was raised in coastal Maine, where his passion for fishing developed while fishing for stripers at the local beaches. He attended school in Washington State, spending summers seining in Southeast Alaska. After graduating, Shannon continued to fish in Southeast Alaska and also worked as a fly fishing guide in Washington and Oregon. His passion for healthy fisheries brought him back to Maine, where he attended law school.

During his time at the University of Maine school of Law, Shannon focused on ocean and coastal law. He served as the Editor-in-Chief of the school’s Ocean and Coastal Law Journal, and worked at the Conservation Law Foundation and NOAA Office of General Counsel, Alaska Section. He returned to Alaska in 2012 and has spent time working for the State of Alaska and Wild Salmon Center. Shannon currently serves on the board of the local Trout Unlimited chapter, on the Advisory Panel for the North Pacific Fishery Management Council, and is an avid fly fisherman and skier.


Rachel Donkersloot
rachel_staffphotoWorking Waterfronts Program Director
rachel@akmarine.org // 907.277.5357

Rachel joined AMCC in 2011 after earning her doctorate in cultural anthropology from the University of British Columbia. For her dissertation fieldwork, she spent a year living in the Irish fishing community of Killybegs studying rural youth out-migration from fishery dependent regions. As AMCC’s Working Waterfronts Program Director she is engaged in research, education and policy work on fishing community sustainability, marine resource governance and rural youth issues in the Global North.

She is currently co-principal investigator on a three year (2014-2017) study, The Graying of the Fleet in Alaska Fisheries: Defining the Problem, Assessing Alternatives, carried out in Bristol Bay and Kodiak Archipelago fishing communities in partnership with University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) and Alaska Sea Grant. Rachel is also an affiliate faculty member at UAF’s School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences. She was raised in the fishing community of Naknek.


Theresa Peterson
TheresaKodiak Outreach Coordinator (Kodiak Office)
theresa@akmarine.org // 907.539.1927

Theresa is an active fisherwoman and long-time resident of Kodiak, Alaska, home to the nation’s largest fishing fleet. Theresa has a diverse fishing portfolio: setnetting for salmon, fishing for tanner crab, longlining for halibut, and jigging for cod. Fishing is a family business for Theresa and her husband Charlie and their three children. A tireless advocate for local fishermen, Theresa supports many aspects of AMCC’s Working Waterfronts and Fisheries Conservation programs. She currently serves on the Advisory Panel for the North Pacific Fishery Management Council, an important and influential body in Alaska’s fisheries management decisions.


HannahHannah Heimbuch 
Community Fisheries Organizer
hannah@akmarine.org // 907.299.4018

Hannah was born and raised in Homer, growing up on her father’s fishing boats and enjoying the ocean-driven life of one of Alaska’s many coastal communities. After receiving a bachelor’s in journalism from the University of Montana, she returned to Homer, where she now spends her time fishing and writing. Hannah has fished salmon across Alaska — including drifting in Bristol Bay, set netting on the Alaska Peninsula, and now drifting again from her home port in Cook Inlet. She also fishes for halibut on a longlining crew out of Homer. Whether it’s through her work as a fisherman, her nonfiction writing or in the day-to-day life of an average Alaskan, the marine environment plays a central role in Hannah’s life.

As our Homer-based Community Fisheries Organizer, Hannah focuses on connecting members of the fisheries community to one another, and to the causes that support sustainable fisheries and the health of Alaska’s marine ecosystems.


Jen Leahy
Communications & Engagement ManagerJen bio pic
jen@akmarine.org // 907.277.5357

Jen is a recovering research consultant who spent several years working as a wilderness tour guide in Southcentral Alaska before deciding to plant her roots in the coastal town of Seward. She cares deeply about the wild fisheries on which she and her neighbors depend. In her role, Jen helps share the story of AMCC’s innovative programs that support vibrant, ocean-dependent coastal communities across Alaska.

Hailing from the salmon culture of the Pacific Northwest, Jen earned her bachelor’s degree from Washington State University with an emphasis in sustainable development. She launched her career as a research and communications consultant in Washington, DC and received graduate-level training at The George Washington University before returning to her native Seattle to focus on progressive causes. Prior to joining AMCC, Jen supported a variety of conservation efforts during her 10-year career for clients such as Sierra Club, The Nature Conservancy and Bristol Bay Native Corporation. She lives a short walk from Resurrection Bay and enjoys the endless fishing and foraging opportunities around the Kenai Peninsula.


David Flemingprofilepic
Local Seafood Sales & Operations Manager
david@akmarine.org // 907.277.5357

David is a third-generation fisherman who was born and raised in Anchorage. He spends his summers fishing Prince William Sound alongside his father and brothers, who are actively involved in the setnet, drift and seine fisheries. David earned his bachelor’s degree in international business from California State University Dominguez Hills. New business ventures drew him to Washington D.C., Germany and Mexico City before returning to Alaska. David is excited to help AMCC expand the Catch of the Season program to connect more Alaskans with sustainable seafood caught by local, independent fishermen.


Connie Melovidov
Membership & Administrative Coordinator
connie@akmarine.org // 907.277.5357

Connie was raised in the remote Bering Sea community of Saint Paul Island. Growing up in the Pribilof Islands, which are culturally and economically influenced community by both a rich subsistence lifestyle and the commercial halibut industry, she became interested in science and fisheries. Her father and brothers are commercial halibut fishermen, and Connie has enjoyed a few long-lining trips herself. Currently, Connie is a senior attending the University of Alaska Anchorage majoring in biology. She first came to AMCC as an intern during the summer of 2016. In her new role, Connie provides critical support to AMCC’s development and operations teams.


Dorothy Childers
DorothyConsultant
dorothy@akmarine.org // 907.277.5357

Dorothy joined the Alaska Marine Conservation Council in 1995, eventually serving as Executive Director until 2005. She received a Pew Fellowship in Marine Conservation for a project addressing fisheries management in the eastern Bering Sea as warming ocean temperatures cause commercially valuable species to move northward into ecologically and culturally sensitive areas. Dorothy’s main focus now is on assisting the Bering Sea Elders Group and supporting our ocean acidification efforts. Dorothy serves on the North Pacific Research Board.

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