Salish Sea Expeditions in the News

Salish Sea Expeditions Press Release

Salish Sea Expeditions’ Board of Directors Welcomes New Members

June 14, 2018


Bainbridge Island, WA – Salish Sea Expeditions announces three new members joining its Board of Directors this spring. They are Alex Adams of the Port of Seattle, Grant Novak of Confluence Environmental Company, and Caitlin Olmsted of bgC3.

Salish Sea Expeditions is an experiential education organization that engages middle and high school students in hands-on marine research expeditions in Puget Sound. Its Board of Directors provides strategic leadership and financial oversight to sustain the organization’s core educational services, and to support a vision to increase service to a greater number of students from throughout the region, and to more students from low-income and underserved communities.

“We’re grateful for the enthusiasm, leadership and relevant expertise our new board members bring to Salish Sea Expeditions,” said Board President Katharine Wellman. “As a region that represents marine resources, innovation and science-based industry, we’re eager to work as an education organization committed to engaging our local youth in science-based inquiry and hands-on learning, and creating a pathway for future-ready employees and engaged citizens.”

Alex Adams is a senior environmental program manager at Port of Seattle, where he works on maritime air quality and sustainability issues. Prior to working for the Port, Alex led sustainability, climate change and energy initiatives for King County and also served as captain and crew on King County’s Water Taxi. He is a licensed captain, with over a decade of experience leading students of all ages on semester-long ocean education trips aboard tall sailing ships in the Great Lakes, and waters between Canada and Trinidad.

Grant Novak is a natural resources management specialist with Confluence Environmental Company where he applies his knowledge of aquatic ecology and the regulatory landscape to help clients reduce or avoid impacts to the aquatic environment. He has also worked as a commercial fisherman and NMFS-certified fisheries observer.

Caitlin Olmsted is a communications professional with experience developing and executing marketing strategies for brands spanning the education, travel, lifestyle, and sports industries. She is presently working on a variety of projects at bgC3, a Seattle think tank founded by Bill Gates.

The 2018 Salish Sea Expeditions Board of Directors are: President, Katharine Wellman, Northern Economics; Secretary, Debra Peat, Intellectual Venture Labs; Treasurer, Bruce Jones, Lake Union Drydock; Alex Adams, Port of Seattle; Pegeen Mulhern, Nicoll, Black & Feig; Grant Novak, Confluence Environmental Company; Caitlin Olmsted, bgC3; Erin Purcell, Finance Consultant at PATH; Sally Goetz Shuler, S.G. Shuler and Associates, LLC; Intern, Sarah-Jane Bailey, Holland America Group.

About Salish Sea Expeditions

Salish Sea Expedition, established in 1994, is a not-for-profit education organization dedicated to engaging middle and high school students in marine science research aboard a 61-foot sailing vessel on the waters of Puget Sound. Students design their own research project, gather and analyze data using professional oceanographic equipment, learn and lead navigation and boat handling for data collection, and work as a team to better understand the environmental health of the Salish Sea and its connected waterways. For more information, visit

# # #

Press Release

Students Share Science Research at 10th Annual Salish Sea Student Science Symposium

May 17, 2018


Bainbridge Island, WA — On Wednesday, May 23, student scientists will present marine research on Puget Sound during the 10th annual Salish Sea Student Science Symposium. This year the event will be held at Bainbridge Island Museum of Art from 5 to 7:30 pm, and will include Islandwood graduate students, Youth Maritime Collaborative, NOAA and Salish Sea Sciences.

“This is the chance for students to take the stage in the role of scientist and researcher, and will include students who have conducted marine research on one of our recent boat-based science learning programs, and students from regional partner organizations,” said Salish Sea Expeditions Education Director Stephanie Burns.  “This kind of capstone experience reinforces student ownership of science learning, and gives them the opportunity to practice invaluable presentation and communication skills.”

Read more ›

Press Release

Students Present Marine Science Research at Salish Sea Student Science Symposium

June 9, 2017

For Immediate Release

Seattle, WA — On Monday, June 12, student scientists will present original marine research on Puget Sound during the ninth annual Salish Sea Student Science Symposium at the UW Center for Urban Horticulture.

“Every student should have the chance to feel what it’s like to discover something about our natural world,” said Salish Sea Expeditions Executive Director Seth Muir. “This event is the culmination of student-led exploration of Puget Sound, and showcases the science these students have used to answer real questions they have about our marine environment.” Read more ›

Expedition urges kids to learn about sea, science

Expedition urges kids to learn about sea, science

May 24, 2017

A group of 28 fifth- and sixth-graders from Mount Erie Elementary School, plus a few of their teachers, took their classroom to the water last week as part of a Salish Sea Expedition.

The young scientists were out on the water to study something of their own choosing. After a couple days in the classroom with the staff from the expedition group, the kids decided to study the relationship between copper in the water and the plankton living there. Read more ›

Bainbridge Island maritime nonprofit gets youth on the water

BI maritime nonprofit gets youth on the water

April 11, 2017

More than 100 high school students participated in a day of experiential learning at the Seattle Maritime Academy on Thursday, March 30 as Bainbridge Island-based nonprofit Salish Sea Expeditions, and others, were on hand to introduce them to maritime career opportunities, a key economic sector for our region and one currently threatened by an aging employee pool.

Salish Sea Expeditions educators led marine science lessons aboard one of the Maritime Academy vessels, and also a weather monitoring exercise on the pier. Read more ›

Salish Sea Expeditions Press Release

Salish Sea Expeditions Partners with Seattle Maritime Academy for Maritime Career Day

March 31, 2017

For Immediate Release

Seattle, WA. — More than 100 high school students participated in a day of experiential learning at Seattle Maritime Academy on Thursday, March 30. The event was sponsored by Seattle Maritime Academy and the Youth Maritime Collaborative (YMC). Bainbridge Island-based nonprofit Salish Sea Expeditions was among organizations on hand to introduce students to maritime career opportunities, which drive a key economic sector for our region. Read more ›

Seattle maritime industry looks to high schools for new work force

Seattle maritime industry looks to high schools for new work force

March 30, 2017

SEATTLE — High school students, across the area, got a first-hand look on Thursday at life in the maritime industry.

It was all part of an effort to address the need for young mariners as the industry faces an aging work force.

“It makes me want to jump on board to do things like this in life,” said Malcolm Dunston, who’s a junior at Rainier Beach High School.

Dunston joined more than 100 students at Seattle Maritime Academy on Thursday morning where they explored the maritime industry and future job opportunities through demonstrations and lectures. Read more ›

Press Release

Anacortes Sixth Graders Learn About Local Watersheds with Salish Sea Expeditions

November 11, 2016


Anacortes, WA – Teams of sixth graders at Mount Erie Elementary are huddled around tables wearing safety glasses and gloves. One student holds up a container of stream water taken from Fidalgo Bay, while another carefully adds reagents that will show if the water sample contains trace pollutants. They’re wondering if the nitrate levels they found in a sample taken at Ace of Hearts Creek might show up “downstream” in the marine environment.

Anacortes schools recently concluded three weeks of hands-on “SOURCE” programs led by Salish Sea Expeditions, a regional leader in hands-on marine science and maritime education. The program served students in nine classes from Mount Erie, Island View and Fidalgo Elementary schools. Read more ›

Carlyn and Kids with Salish Sea Expeditions

Salish Sea Expeditions: Aquatic adventures on the Puget Sound

October 16, 2016

On March 9-11, I joined a group of Rainier Beach students that went on the Salish Sea Expeditions Field Trip. The group experimented with water samples from the Puget Sound, learned how a sailing ship operated and cooked delicious food.

As we departed from the Elliott Bay Marina early Wednesday morning, the rain started to come down softly. Captain Ryan Downs and his crew taught us safety procedures and how the ship was run. The class sat quietly on the deck as the crew undocked us from the marina and then proceeded to bring the ship out of Elliott Bay. Read more ›

Raising the mainsail with Salish Sea Expeditions

Sailing the Salish: Lessons Learned on the High Seas

March 15, 2016

She is sixty-one feet bow to stern with a thirteen foot beam, the sleek, white yawl rig called Carlyn. Sails taut with Northwest breeze, she plies the waters of Puget Sound, also known as the Salish Sea, from Olympia  to the San Juan Islands. Salish Sea Expeditions calls the Carlyn their floating classroom, loading her with, among other tools, plankton nets, microscopes, colorimeters, Niskin bottles for taking water samples, and Secchi disks to measure water clarity, all to give kids in grades five through 12 the exciting, real-life experience of doing science. Read more ›

1 2

Media Inquiries

For Media Inquiries please contact Brenna Sowder at (206) 780-7848 or