Meet the QARTOD Board of Advisors! The BoA broadly represents the oceanographic observing and data management communities. Responsibilities include: setting priorities for work efforts; ensuring that requirements are addressed; guiding overall progress; providing recommendations for approval of QA/QC manuals to the IOOS Program Director; and, identifying subject matter experts for the working groups/sensor committees. These well-regarded BoA members have diverse interests and skills, so as to span all aspects of real-time quality control. They provide highly valued guidance and vision to the QARTOD project, author/co-author papers, conduct outreach, and contribute case studies or examples to be included in manuals. Members meet quarterly to review project status and suggest future activities.

Kathleen (Kathy) Bailey -

Kathy is with the NOAA U.S. Integrated Ocean System Program Office, where she manages the Data Management and Cyberinfrastructure (DMAC) program. DMAC activities include management of a model output visualization and analysis tool (the IOOS Model Viewer), QARTOD project management, and oversight of data access and delivery of nonfederal observation data through federal systems and products. She joined the QARTOD BOA in 2015.

Jim Behrens -

Jim joined CDIP in 2016, and works in program management. A specialist in oceanographic and geophysical instrumentation and field operations, he has logged over 1,000 days of sea time on research and exploration projects spanning the globe, plus two years of Antarctic deep field expeditions. He studied physics at Purdue University, and completed his Ph.D. at the Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego in 2005, with a focus on measuring and modeling electromagnetic properties of the seafloor and associated plate tectonic processes. 

Mathew Biddle -

Matt is with the NOAA U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System Program Office, where he works in the DataManagement and Cyberinfrastructure (DMAC) program. Matt specializes in data management of marine life observations,primarily from the Marine Biodiversity Observation Network (MBON) program, and long-term archival of IOOS in-situoceanographic data at NCEI.

Julie Bosch -

Julie is with NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information. She is the author or co-author of many papers focusing on oceanographic data structure, data mining, information science and process improvement, and all facets of data quality. She is a Gulf of Mexico Regional Science Officer, and a charter member of the QARTOD Project.

Eugene Burger -

Eugene was elected as the Chair of the QARTOD Board of Advisors in 2022. He is the Associate Director for Information Technology for the NOAA Pacific Marine and Environmental Laboratory Office of the Director, where he supports PMEL’s Science Data Integration project. He joined the QARTOD BOA in 2015.

Mark Bushnell -

Mark, National Coordinator for the QARTOD project, is a physical oceanographer. He served as chief scientist on 23 cruises aboard NOAA research vessels, managed the NOS Ocean Systems Test & Evaluation Program, retiring from NOAA after 30 years. He is a charter member of the IOC Ocean Best Practices System Project Steering Group and the U.S. CLIVAR Uncertainty Quantification Working Group. He assisted in forming the QARTOD Project.

Jennifer Dorton -

Jennifer, Deputy Director for the South East Coastal Ocean Observing Regional Association (SECOORA) Regional Coastal Ocean Observing System, is responsible for overseeing the development of SECOORA’s updated regional observing plan, managing data and communications, coordinating SECOORA’s Principal Investigators (PIs), and growing their observing system. Jennifer has years of experience leading grant funded programs and projects at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, starting in 2004. She has served as a PI on the SECOORA-funded UNCW Coastal Ocean Research and Monitoring Program and as the lead PI on the Marine Weather Portal web development project. Jennifer has worked as the coordinator for NOAA teams such as NOAA in the Carolinas and the North Carolina Sentinel Site Cooperative. Jennifer and her husband, Jay Styron, also own and operate Carolina Mariculture Co., an oyster farm where they use off-bottom mariculture techniques to farm raise oysters. She joined the QARTOD BOA in 2018.

Regina Easley -

Regina, Research Chemist for the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), Chemical Sciences Division of the Materials Measurement Laboratory, co-manages the electroanalytical chemistry laboratory, which produces pH Certified Reference Materials, and works to improve methods to measure inorganic carbon dioxide in seawater. She is an affiliated faculty member at Georgetown University / Environmental Metrology and Policy, a collaboration between GU, NIST and the Environmental Protection Agency. She joined the QARTOD BOA in 2020.

Karen Grissom -

Karen is the Lead Scientist and an oceanographer at NOAA’s National Data Buoy Center (NDBC). In this role she assists NDBC in mission requirements refinement and bridges the gap between scientific research and the operational observing community. In addition, she leads the NDBC Tropical Atmosphere Ocean observing group, and is the NDBC project manager responsible for data management quality assurance processes that govern the quality control of all NDBC data. She has served as co-PI on the NOAA funded pilot study to enhance ocean boundary layer observations in support of the Tropical Pacific Observing System and serves on a number of WMO groups, including OceanSITES, DBCP, SG-OOIS, and ET-QTC. Prior to joining the NWS, Karen worked as an oceanographic application engineer for a sensor manufacturer, a hydrogeologist for the State of Florida, and an oceanographer within NOAA’s National Ocean Service. She joined the QARTOD BOA in 2020.

Robert Heitsenrether -

Bob, Manager of the Ocean Systems Test and Evaluation Program (OSTEP) at NOAA’s National Ocean Service / Center for Operational Oceanographic Products and Services (CO-OPS) facilitates the transition of new technology into CO-OPS’ suite of operational tools, including microwave water level sensors, global positioning systems for vertical leveling of water level sensors, and easily deployed buoys for current surveys. Bob joined the QARTOD BOA in 2018.


Bob is a research hydraulic engineer at the US Army Corps of Engineers, Engineer Research and Development Center, Coastal and Hydraulics Laboratory. He has 40 years of experience in wave modeling, wave climatology studies, Navy operational wave forecasting, and analysis of met-ocean data.  He is the chair of the WMO/Joint Technical Commission for Oceanography and Marine Meteorology’s Data Buoy Cooperation Panel Moored Buoys and Wave Measurements task team. Bob first joined the QARTOD BOA in 2013, and he joined again in 2021.

Mario Tamburri -

Mario, Director of the Alliance for Coastal Technologies and Director of the Marine Environmental Resource Center at the University of Maryland / Chesapeake Biological Laboratory, has expertise in sustainable urban waterfronts, environmental technologies and observing systems, chemical ecology of aquatic organisms, and prevention and management invasive species ecology. He received the Faculty Award for Excellence in Public Service by the University System of Maryland Regents Faculty in 2017, and the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science President’s Award for Science Application in 2015. He is a charter member of the QARTOD Project.

Christoph Waldmann -

Christoph, Senior Scientist at the University of Bremen (MARUM), is the past chair of the German Strategy Group on Ocean Observatories and a member of the GEO Blue Planet Steering Group. He is a current member of the expert team on WMO and IOC information systems, the national representative to the International Organization for Standardization technical committee 8 sub-committee 13 (marine technology standardization), and a past member of the Belmont Forum Steering Committee on E-Infrastructures. He joined the QARTOD BOA in 2018.