Program: Neil Richmond Award


Oregon Institute of Marine Biology


Danielle is a senior studying marine biology at the University of Oregon's Oregon Institute of Marine Biology. She completed three years of study at Oregon State University (OSU), and after she completes her Bachelor of Science degree, she hopes to return to OSU to complete a masters in Marine Resource Management. She plans to use these degrees as a tool for public outreach and community education. During Danielle's Junior year, she traveled to Australia with the Pacific Whale Foundation. While there, she was able to photograph and study the migrating humpback whales. This was defining life moment for her.

Professional and Research Interests: 

Danielle's ultimate goal is to use her love for the ocean as a tool to educate people on why it is so important and ways they can protect it. She is also interested in creating an ocean conservation curriculum for elementary and middle school children. She believes that teaching our children at a young age about the importance of caring for our coastlines is vital in raising a new generation of environmentally aware Americans.

Danielle grew up in Salem, Oregon. Her father is an avid fisherman, so her experience with the water started young. Growing up in Oregon allowed her to explore so much of what the ocean has to offer – she investigated tide pools early on, learning about native species and fostering her curiosity. Family trips to Hawaii also allowed Danielle to explore an oceanic world so different from her own. The colorful species and sense of urgency Hawaiians put on protecting their waters set her path in motion. When she was a sophomore in high school, her marine biology teacher showed her that she could take this passion and turn it into a career.