I am a Professor in the Marine Sciences Program at Savannah State University with a focus on conservation biology and ecology of large marine vertebrates. I earned a Master’s in Coastal Environmental Management and Ph.D. in Ecology from Duke University. I gained policy experience as the Assistant Scientific Program Director at the U.S. Marine Mammal Commission in Bethesda, Maryland. At Savannah State University, I acted as the PI for the Bridge to Research in Marine Sciences REU program, which focuses on training and building the confidence of younger (i.e., freshmen and sophomores) under-represented minorities in marine science. I have served as co-chair of the Committee on Diversity and Inclusion for the Society for Marine Mammalogy for the past 6 years. More recently, I have developed an internship directly aimed at increasing representation of under-served minorities in marine mammal science, funded by the Office of Naval Research and U.S. Marine Mammal Commission; the internship ties multiple Minority-Serving Institutions with private partners to host interns during the academic year and summer.