Dylan Faulkner - President & Founder
Promoting higher education of marine organisms with passion to inspire others for an informed and positive community.
Dylan Faulkner moved to St. Petersburg, Florida from New London, Connecticut. He served in the United States Navy and spent most of his life growing up along the Chesapeake Bay on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. His passion for the water lead him to study for his degree in Marine Science at Eckerd College. With encouragement from his family and friends, Dylan started the Shark Conservation Center in 2015. Dylan's energetic and motivational drive has taken the SCC team to great lengths. He envisions this organization to continue to grow and allow more colleges to participate in the educational undergraduate programs provided by the SCC. On his free time, he enjoys shark/fossil diving, action sports, and dancing. Graduate school is on the horizon as he aims to continue his education.
Henry Sadler - SCUBA Coordinator & Co-Founder
Helping others understand the value and complexity of marine life through first hand experiences of their world.
Henry Sadler moved to Florida as a child from London, England and fell in love with the ocean. He later moved north to Vermont. In New England Henry established a deep connection with the environment; its forests, mountains, streams, and lakes. These values followed him back to Florida where he began studying Marine Biology at Eckerd College. As a longtime diver, Henry became a Divemaster in his freshman year and utilized this in his position at the Island School in Eleuthera, Bahamas, where he assisted in SCUBA instruction and taught a Marine Ecology class. He continued his SCUBA education and became a Dive Instructor, and has at this point certified or assisted in certification of over 200 students. Henry strongly believes in the power of education to shape public attitude, and that hands-on experience is the key to shifting our worldview to a sustainable reality.
Preserving our natural world and resources to conserve and protect the world’s biodiversity through field based research, hoping to instill this passion for conservation of wildlife in others.
Jo Campo moved to Saint Petersburg, FL from Acton, MA. She grew up in the suburbs of Boston surrounded by the woods, developing a fascination and passion for the outdoors at a young age, along with a passion for wildlife. Inspired by a marine biology class in high school, she joined her school’s Marine Science Team, which sparked her passion and desire to learn more about the marine world: and how to preserve its unique creatures. This lead her to Eckerd College to pursue a degree in Biology (Ecology Track) and Environmental Studies, with a focus on Marine Ecology, earning her degree in December of 2016. Wishing to play an active role in the conservation of an integral keystone species, she joined SCC in the spring of 2016. After having the opportunity to travel and perform research at the Bimini Biological Field Station in March 2016, she realized her desire to continue working with sharks in the future. Through the SCC, she spread messages of the importance of shark conservation through education and outreach at several different events and facilities throughout the Tampa Bay Area. In her free time, she enjoys running, wake boarding, surfing, rock climbing, playing with dogs, diving, and essentially any outdoor activity. She is currently working as a field research technician in conjunction with a Professor at Eckerd College, and hopes to continue to pursue a career in conservation ecology.
Nick DeGennaro - Shark fishing/tagging coordinator
Teaching how to sustain a species through proper practice of tagging, and catch and release.
Nick DeGennaro is currently a freshman who studies Marine Science at Eckerd College. His interest in marine life comes from living along Long Beach Island in New Jersey. There, he has followed in the footsteps of his family members and took on a strong passion for fishing. Now he has taken that passion further, turning towards the conservation side of the sport. Nick hopes to promote how fishing can become a strong benefit to science while continuing to be a popular pastime but only when it ends with a live, healthy release
Originally from Frederick, Maryland, moved to the Tampa bay area in 2013 to pursue a degree in Biology. She utilized her love for marine life by doing eco-tours for a paddleboard and kayaking company where she taught people about the organisms that inhabit the waters of Florida. She discovered her love for educating people about marine life when she became a docent at the Mote Marine Aquarium’s marine mammal center. In her free time, she loves to paddleboard, go to the beach, and discover new restaurants. After graduation she plans to enter graduate school and pursue a career in conservation research.
Ironing boards are just surf boards that gave up on their dreams. Don't be an ironing board
Tye Petrotta lived in Rochester, New York before moving to St. Petersburg, Florida. He is a marine science major with a visual art minor at Eckerd College. At Eckerd he works as an RA and a barista at Starbucks. Tye's passion of the ocean comes from watching Free Willy countless times when he was kid and from that time he saw a shark. He likes to have fun and enjoy whatever it is he's doing whether its being with friends or doing research. Most of his life, Tye has been actively involved in foster care and other various programs working with kids. He hopes to get a job with kids and marine biology after college. In his free time Tye enjoys watching films, playing soccer, Star Wars, and looking at memes. Tye's favorite band is One Direction but is not entirely sure if he likes them better post-Zayn or when he was in the band. Anywho, Tye wants to continue to be involved and to branch out in his field to gain more experience to find out what could be in store for him in the future.
Kyle Bradshaw: CO-Head Researcher
Kyle is currently a sophomore at Eckerd College pursuing a major in marine science, biology track. Kyle is mainly interested in elasmobranchs and their role in our ecosystem. He is involved in many extra-curricular activities outside of the Shark Conservation Center. He participates in the Eckerd College Search and Rescue team, which is the only maritime search and rescue program in the country. He also participates in the mixed martial arts club on campus. Kyle has been to the Sharklab at Bimini to complete a week of shark research and in the winter of 2017 traveled to Isla de Juventud, Cuba to participate in marine science projects the current faculty at the University of Havana is working on. Kyle has been with the Shark Conservation Center since it started in the fall of 2015. He plans on creating various research projects and maybe even a scientific paper by the time he graduates.
Undergraduate Student at Eckerd College pursuing a degree in Marine Science with a concentration in Biology. He was born and raised in sunny South Florida and was lucky enough to grow up around his favorite animals, sharks. The mission of the SCC, the educating of the public on these magnificent creatures and the promotion of their conservation, is a subject that is near and dear to his heart as he hopes to one day work on studying these awe-inspiring creatures in the field for the rest of his life.
Rachel Stephenson, Head of Research/Event Coordination
Rachel's passion for the ocean began well before her undergraduate studies, for she grew up in Santa Rosa, California. Living just outside of the Bay area, she was able to visit the Pacific Ocean often throughout her childhood. After moving to northern Virginia, she continued to pursue her passion for the ocean by participating in marine science education programs, such as SeaCamp in both San Diego and the Florida Keys. She was certified as a Junior Open Water diver at age 12 and later recieved her Master Diver certification at age 15. Rachel is currently a junior at Eckerd College, pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology with two minors in Computer Science and Psychology. She has been with the Shark Conservation Center since its establishment in 2015 and plans to continue working with the organization beyond graduation. She plays a variety of roles within the SCC, though she mainly works with research and event coordination throughout the school year. Outside of the SCC, Rachel enjoys reading, muay thai/mixed martial arts, and volunteering at animal shelters. Last summer, she was a youth development intern for the 4H program, where she organized STEM programs and workshops for kids ages 5-18 years. Rachel loves working with kids, conducting/organizing research projects, and studying marine and terrestrial animals, so the SCC has been a truly incredible experience for her over the years.
Grace Koziol - Co- Head Researcher
Grace is a new edition to the Shark Conservation Center as well as Eckerd College. She transferred into Eckerd in the Fall of ’16 to pursue a degree in Marine Science. She has had the amazing opportunities to study bull sharks while diving and working in collaboration with marine biologists at Shark Reef Marine Reserve located in Viti Levu, Fiji. During the summer of 2016 Grace was a docent at the New York Aquarium educating guests on shark biology, conservation, and current research conducted by the aquarium. She has also worked with Cuban students and professors in a joint program with The University of Havana studying the effects of invasive lionfish on Cuban coral reefs and assisted in the deployment and retrieval of BRUVS. Grace aspires to pursue a career in research, examining the roles different species of sharks play in regulating the health of the oceanic habitats they thrive in. It is paramount to identify critical species and create legislation that offsets negative impacts shark populations face produced by external pressures.
I am currently a freshman at Eckerd College studying marine science and environmentalism. I am from Grand Rapids, MI which is where I first fell in love with the water from snorkeling around Lake Michigan. My love for sharks came from watching shark week with my dad and then making it a goal to go out and see them in their natural habitat. My first shark encounters happened my junior year of high school in the Bahamas on a week long diving trip where I got to experience my first hands on feeding, along with other random sightings. The winter of my freshman year of college I got the opportunity to visit the Bimini Shark Research lab and do shark tagging, measuring, blood sampling, and a dissection. My goal now is to further my knowledge and others about sharks and study more about their behaviors.
A junior at Eckerd College and is majoring in marine science and minoring in psychology. He is interested in shark behavior towards humans, as well as the effect of non-lethal shark deterrents on behavior as well. He is an avid fisherman who enjoys tagging sharks as well as teaching youth anglers about shark biology and proper handling techniques at the summer camp he works at. Jason spent a week in the spring of 2016 at shark lab in Bimini where he helped tag new sharks for the team and learned about various projects. In January of 2017, he spent two weeks in Cuba helping out with various marine biology related projects with faculty from the University of Havana. He joined the team with intentions of helping to preserve shark populations in hopes that future generations can have a similar experience!