Dr. Ron Felthoven (AFSC) was appointed on an interim basis for the remainder of the year to replace Dr. Matt Reimer, who will be on sabattical. Dr. Felthoven’s appointment, conditional on confirmation by the Council in October, will continue through December, at which time the position will revert to the regular nomination process.
The Council appointed Ms. Lisa Hillier (WDFW) to serve on both the Bering Sea and Gulf Groundfish Plan Teams, with her time participating on those two bodies based on the issues under consideration by each team. Ms. Hillier is a scientist in the WDFW Marine Fish Science Unit with a background in population assessment for both groundfish and shellfish management, and ecosystem investigations. Her experience includes work with trawl and ROV surveys.
Also appointed to the BSAI Plan Team is Dr. Steven Barbeaux, Dr. Kalei Shotwell, and Ms. Jane Sullivan. Dr. Barbeaux (AFSC) has strong quantitative skills and knowledge of flatfish, pollock, and Pacific cod, population dynamics. In addition, he has authored stock assessments for Greenland turbot, Aleutian Island pollock, and GOA Pacific and publications on fisheries dependent sampling, spatial modeling and acoustics. Dr. Kalei Shotwell, (AFSC), will replace Dr. Dana Hanselman who is now on the SSC. Dr. Shotwell has strong quantitative skills and knowledge of stock assessment and has authored and co-authored numerous rockfish SAFE chapters for over ten years and has recently worked on integrating ecosystem and socio-economic considerations with stock assessment through the development of Ecosystem and Socio-economic Profiles (ESP) is a major step to bring ecosystem-based science to the NPFMC. Ms. Sullivan, (ADF&G), has been participating in a temporary role on the Plan Team since Dave Barnard’s retirement. Jane is currently a biometrician responsible for various groundfish stock assessments and is assisting in developing an age-structured Pacific herring model.
The Council appointed Dr. Peter Hulson (AFSC) serve on the NPFMC Gulf of Alaska Groundfish Plan Team to replace Dr. Jon Heifetz who is retiring. Dr. Hulson has strong quantitative skills and knowledge of rockfish population dynamics, and has authored rockfish SAFE chapters, and other publications on spatial modeling, tagging data, and age composition sampling. Pete also has extensive at-sea fieldwork experience having participated in AFSC longline and acoustic surveys as well as working directly with the rockfish trawl industry.
Dr. Cody Szuwalski (AFSC) is appointed to serve on the NPFMC Bering Sea Crab Plan Team. Dr. Szuwalski has strong quantitative skills and knowledge of crab life history, spatial modeling, snow crab stock assessment, fish and shellfish population dynamics. He recently authored the Bering Sea snow crab SAFE chapter, and has published papers on climate ready fisheries management, trophic cascades, spatial models and next generation stock assessment techniques.
The Council appointed members of the newly formed Salmon FMP Committee: Erik Huebsch, Dan Anderson, Dino Sutherland, Hanna Heimbuch, and Mike Casseri. The Council Chair will appoint a Council member to Chair the committee before their first scheduled meeting. The Chairman provided a statement explaining his choice of committee composition. The rationale for his initial appointments was spoken into the record and is provided below and on the Council website.
In October last year the Council decided to form a Salmon FMP Committee to assist in the development of measures necessary to satisfy Section 303(a) of the MSA and related MSA provisions. At this time, the focus of the analytical and technical work to revise the Salmon FMP is on Cook Inlet only. The detailed structure of the analysis has not been developed: The Alternatives are very generally identified as 1. No Action; 2. Cooperative management with the State; and 3. Federal management.
My selection of this initial group of Salmon FMP Committee members focuses on the primary affected stakeholders, the Cook Inlet drift gillnet permit holders, who fish in the EEZ waters of Cook Inlet. The tasking that the NPFMC has given to the Salmon FMP Committee is also primarily focused on measures related to management of the drift gillnet salmon fisheries in the EEZ. I recognize that these management measures may affect other stakeholder groups and that there is strong interest from a wide range of those groups to join the Salmon FMP Committee. I expect that at a future date the Council could determine, based on the progress of FMP development, that additional tasks for the Committee warrant selection of representatives from other stakeholder groups. The analysis, scheduled for December, could provide the impetus for those selections. Until that time, all interested stakeholder groups are welcome and encouraged to attend the Committee meetings, these meetings are open to the public. Members of the public can participate and engage with the Committee consistent with our established processes for Council committees. One of the main goals at the first Committee meeting, which would occur sometime prior to the December Council meeting will be to orient the Committee members to the federal fisheries management process, especially those who are new to it.
Finally, I expect to discuss appointment of a Committee Chair with Council members over the next few months and may be able to make that appointment before my term ends in early August.
This selection of Committee members is consistent with standard Council practice and Council SOPPs, which is to solicit names from the public for appointment by the Council Chairman. Appointments to committees and other subsidiary bodies are always announced at the end of Council meetings. Selection of the initial Committee members at the June Council meeting gives them time to prepare for review of the initial FMP analysis.
Staff contact is Jim Armstrong.