Lobster Institute Board of Advisors

The Lobster Institute’s Board of Advisors is a volunteer group that provides advice and counsel to the Institute regarding its research and programming priorities; and supports the Institute in implementing its activities.  They come from a wide variety of lobster industry sectors and geographic regions, and help keep the Institute in touch and in tune with the needs of the lobster industry.

  • Marianne LaCroix – Chair
    Director, Maine Lobster Marketing Collaborative
  • Kathleen Reardon, Vice Chair
    Maine Department of Marine Resources Lobster Scientist
  • Kathy Heanssler – Secretary/Clerk  Conary Cove Lobster
  • William Adler – Massachusetts lobsterman – Green Harbor
  • William Anderson – Maine lobsterman – Trescott
  • Curt Brown – Ready Seafood Chief Biologist, Maine
  • Jim Dow – V.P. Maine Lobstermen’s Association
  • Robert Fortin, President and Sheila Dassatt, Executive Director – Downeast Lobstermen’s Association
  • Melanie Giffin – PEI Fishermen’s Association Marine Biologist
  • Heidi Henniger – Atlantic Offshore Lobstermen’s Association
  • Herbert Hodgkins – Lobster Products, Inc., Maine
  • Geoff Irvine – Director, The Lobster Council of Canada
  • Jason Joyce – Lobsterman, Swans Island, Maine
  • Luc LeBlanc – Maritime Fishermen’s Union Representative
  • Bart Mansi – Guilford Lobster Pound, Connecticut
  • Ben McKinney/Luke Holden – Cape Seafood/Luke’s Lobster, Maine
  • Jack Merrill – V.P. Maine Lobstermen’ s Association
  • Joseph Pratt, Bar Harbor Bank and Trust
  • Dana Rice – Downeast Lobstermen’s Assn., Lobster Dealer, Maine
  • Remy Rochette – University of New Brunswick, Faculty of Biological Sciences
  • Arthur “Sookey” Sawyer/Beth Casoni – President/Executive Director Massachusetts Lobstermen’s Assocation
  • Melanie Sonnenberg – Eastern Fishermen’s Federation
  • Joshua Stoll – UMaine Faculty in Marine Sciences
  • Annie Tselikis – Maine Lobster Dealers Association Executive Director

Lobster Institute Staff

Richard Wahle

Research Interests

I am broadly interested in the influences of the ocean’s physical and biotic environment on the population dynamics and distribution of marine benthic organisms. Much of my research integrates the fields of ecology, oceanography, and fishery science toward a better mechanistic understanding of marine populations and communities. I have a particularly long-standing research program on the American lobster for which I and my collaborators are striving to develop predictive tools for population trends through an understanding of larval transport, settlement, and post-settlement processes.


Ph.D., Zoology, University of Maine, 1990 M.S., Biology, San Francisco State University, 1982 B.A., Zoology, University of New Hampshire, 1977

Curriculum Vitae: Richard Wahle CV (PDF)


Christina “Chris” Cash is the Assistant Director for Outreach and Communication at the Lobster Institute at UMaine. Chris was an advancement officer for Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences since 2019, and she served as program and development director at the Frances Perkins Center and director of outreach at the Institute for Broadening Participation, both in Damariscotta.

Chris is also a former lobster boat owner/operator based on Monhegan Island, a pilot boat and tuna boat first mate, and holds an active captain’s license. 


B.A. English Literature, University of Maine, 1994

Chris Cash