CCWG staff has several full time staff, but also works with other research affiliates, faculty, and students at Moss Landing Marine Labs and CSUMB. CCWG also is a host site for the Americorps and Conservation Coprs Watershed Stewards Program interns.
Ross Clark, Program Director
Ross Clark has 20 years of experience drafting and implementing California’s Nonpoint Source Control Program both as a university researcher and as state agency staff. He is currently charged with developing regional programs to improve the restoration and management of state wetland resources and implementing programs to reduce nutrient loading to Central Coast surface waters. Ross manages a team of field scientists supporting the development and implementation of the State’s wetland monitoring program and the integration of wetland restoration activities into regional and State water quality and land use planning efforts. Since 2008 he has also been tasked with developing the City of Santa Cruz strategic plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and identify key threats from, and appropriate responses to climate change and sea level rise.
Kevin O'Connor, Program Manager
Kevin O’Connor is an ecologist specializing in wetland restoration, monitoring and assessment, and is the Program Manager for CCWG. He received his Bachelors degree in Biology and Environmental Studies from UC Santa Cruz in 2004 and his Masters degree in Biology from San Diego State University in 2007 where he investigated the effects of kelp forest disturbance on kelp associated fishes on Santa Catalina Island. Kevin joined CCWG in December 2007 and is currently involved with wetland and upland restoration in the Moro Cojo Slough, the development of a rapid assessment method (CRAM) for seasonally tidal estuaries and depressional systems, and participation with the California Wetlands Monitoring Workgroup.
- NGO Co-Chair of the California Wetlands Monitoring Workgroup
- Chair of the Science and Data Committee for the Pacific Marine and Estuarine Fish Habitat Partnership
- Member of the Waters Committee for the West Marin Environmental Action Committee
- Member of the San Lorenzo Valley Water District Engineering and Environmental Committee
Sarah Stoner-Duncan, Research Coordinator
Sarah Stoner-Duncan is an environmental scientist with a background in wetland ecology and restoration, conservation biology, and environmental education. She has been working at CCWG since 2011 and in her current role is a Project Manager for several upland and wetland restoration projects. She also participates in monitoring and assessment activities, and provides GIS, graphic design, and grant writing support to the CCWG team. Previously, she spent several years working in the San Francisco Bay as part of a project studying the effects of mercury contamination on waterbirds. She has also worked on conservation projects in Mauritius and Guatemala. Sarah received her BA in Environmental Studies from UC Santa Cruz in 2004 and her MS in Environmental Studies from Antioch University New England in 2010, where she studied Conservation Biology and Environmental Education and how these two disciplines can intersect to meet the goals of each. Besides wetland ecology, Sarah is interested in community based conservation, curriculum development, and graphic design. She enjoys living by the ocean, visiting the mountains, and spending time with family and friends.
Jenny Balmagia, Water Resources Scientist
Jenny is a water resources scientist with a background in ecology, wetland restoration and assessment, and water quality monitoring. She received her Bachelor's degree in Biology in 2014 from Reed College in Portland, Oregon and her Master's degree in Environmental Science and Management, specializing in water resources management, from the Bren School of Science & Management at UC Santa Barbara in 2020. For her Master's project, she helped design a decision support tool to aid groundwater managers in California's Central Valley in identifying the most suitable sites for managed aquifer recharge projects that have the potential to provide additional benefits to communities and ecosystems. Jenny began working for CCWG in 2015 as a Watershed Stewards Program member assessing watershed health using CRAM and RipRAM, and continued working as a research assistant constructing and studying treatment wetlands and woodchip bioreactors. After leaving to earn her Master's degree she rejoined CCWG in 2021 as the Lower Salinas Valley Watershed Coordinator. In her current role she is responsible for coordinating the implementation of multiple benefit watershed projects through facilitating interagency coordination and partnership development with regional stakeholders including surface and groundwater managers, agricultural entities, and community-based groups. Jenny has also been rock climbing for over 15 years, and when not trying to create healthier watersheds, she can often be found on the side of a rock in the mountains or desert.
Jessica Turner, Water Quality Research Assistant
Brooke Fulkerson, Data Analyst
Brooke is a data analyst with a background in marine ecology and water quality monitoring. She received her Bachelor's degree in Marine Science in 2018 and her Master's degree in Environmental Science in 2022, both from CSU Monterey Bay. As a graduate student, she worked on multiple projects including monitoring water quality in the Central Coast Region, modeling fish populations in estuaries, and analyzing changes in kelp forest biomass along the California Coast over time. Brooke is also an avid SCUBA diver and does research diving for various projects and leads dive tours in Monterey Bay.
Steve Cunningham, Lab Technician
Steven is a marine scientist with a background in biological and physical oceanography. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Biology (marine emphasis) from Humboldt State University in 2012, and his Master’s degree in Marine Science at Moss Landing Marine Labs in 2019. Steven has worked on a wide range of research projects including ecosystem modeling, aquaculture, water quality processing, and ballast treatment systems. These experiences led Steven to have a broad knowledge of analytical instrumentation and how it can be applied to study complex ecosystems.
Kamille Hammerstrom, Research Associate
After completing a Bachelor's of Science in Marine Biology and a Master's of Science in Marine Science, I made my way to benthic infauna of California via some stops in seagrasses of North Carolina and Florida and tidal creek communities of South Carolina. I'm interested in disturbance ecology, from erosion and habitat loss in benthic infaunal communities to iceberg scour in Antarctic sponge ecosystems. I also work in restoration, where my tasks range from research and permit writing to planting and monitoring coastal wetland and terrestrial flora. When I'm not analyzing data I can often be found knitting or weaving with naturally dyed fibers.
Erick Partida, MLML Student Assistant
Athena Lynch, CCC Watershed Steward
Elizabeth Allen, CCC Watershed Steward
Previous CCWG Staff
- Charlie Endris
- Aubrie Heckel
- Cara Clark
- Hannah Travers
- Jason Adelaars
- Jessica Williamson
- Kim Null
- Sierra Ryan
- Walter Heady
- Kellie Ray
Previous MLML Student Assistants
- Roxanne Garibay
- Ryan Chiu
- Fuller Gerbl
- Jacquie Chisholm
- Tyler Barnes
- Justin Peglow
- Maureen Wise
- Miranda Baker
- Jasmine Ruvalcaba
Previous CCC Watershed Steward Program Members
- Jay Ryan and Ashley Baillie (2021-2022)
- Maya Vavra and Alex Johanson (2019-2020)
- Sara Galindo and Maddy Luthard (2018-2019)
- Rachel Stump and Emily Cain (2017-2018)
- Blair Libby and Madeline Chavira (2016-2017)
- Jenny Balmagia and Kyle Monper (2015-2016)
Previous CCWG Interns
- Magnolia Morris
- Mason Leandro
- Andre Joseph-Witzig
- Rachel Pausch
- Ria Mukerji
- Hester Fan
- Devon Anderson
- Rae Taylor-Burns
- Emma Arago
- Paige Griggs
- Cabrillo College:
- Patricia Clark
- Colorado College:
- Maret Smith-Miller