News

NOAA Appoints Dr. Clay Porch as New Science and Research Director for the Southeast Fisheries Science Center

Feature Story
03/20/2018
Southeast Fisheries Science Center Director Clay Porch.

Today, NOAA announced the appointment of Dr. Clay Porch as the new Science and Research Director for NOAA’s Southeast Fisheries Science Center which includes the main laboratory in Miami, Florida, and labs in Galveston, Texas; Pascagoula, Mississippi; Panama City, Florida; and Beaufort, North Carolina; and field stations in Lafayette, Louisiana; and Stennis Space Center, Mississippi. He will assume his new role on April 2, 2018.

NOAA leadership looks forward to the opportunities ahead as Dr. Porch leads the Science Center’s expert staff in their mission to develop and manage research programs to better understand the living marine resources in the Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean, and internationally.

“I am pleased to announce Clay as NOAA’s new Southeast Fisheries Center Director,” said Dr. Cisco Werner, Chief Science Advisor for NOAA Fisheries. “His unique expertise and strategic mindset will forward the science center’s focus on domestic and international research as well as the people and communities who depend on robust, sustainable marine resources now and in the future.” 

Dr. Porch has long-standing experience at NOAA, having held various positions with the agency for more than 25 years, winning multiple awards for his leadership and administrative capabilities. He has served as a member of the Science Center’s leadership team since 2006. He has overseen population assessments and research for vitally important domestic fish populations in the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean, as well as some in the South Atlantic and internationally for the International Commission for the Conservation of Tuna. He is also an internationally recognized expert in the field of fishery stock assessments having written more than 160 technical reports and peer-reviewed journal articles.

Clay received his Ph.D. Marine Biology and Fisheries and Physical Oceanography from the University of Miami's Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science in 1993, where he also received his bachelor’s in Biology/Marine Science and Mathematics/Chemistry and master’s degree in Biological Oceanography. He has worked for NOAA Fisheries' Southeast Fisheries Science Center since 1993 and started his career serving as the lead assessment scientist for Atlantic Bluefin Tuna, one of the world’s most iconic species.

Dr. Porch and his family currently reside in Miami, Florida, where he is an avid angler and scuba diver.