CEINC is governed by a Board of Directors that provides strategic direction and oversight for the organization.  To inquire about serving on the Board of Directors, please contact one of the Board members below. 

Darren Mierau



Darren is the current CEINC board president. Darren is a biologist, with many years of experience and involvement in coastal estuarine and Humboldt Bay strategic planning, resource management, and wetland/salmonid restoration efforts. These efforts have primarily focuses on fishery and water resource issues, as well as bringing a whole-watershed approach to management and restoration efforts. Darren is the north coast program manager for California Trout, a science-based conservation organization dedicated to restoring salmon and steelhead and their waters throughout California.

Mary Ann Madej

Vice President


Mary Ann is a geomorphologist with 40 years of experience in erosion and sediment transport in the Pacific Northwest and California. She retired in 2013, after working for the U.S. Geological Survey and National Park Service as a research scientist. Mary Ann is an Adjunct Professor at Humboldt State University. Her recent work focuses on carbon fluxes from the terrestrial environment to rivers and estuaries, and eventually to the ocean. She also evaluates the effectiveness of watershed restoration programs and has been monitoring river channel changes over decades. Mary Ann believes in the importance of public scientific literacy, and teaches classes, organizes workshops, and leads field trips to groups of all ages.

Dr. Sharon Kramer, PhD



Sharon is a Principal at H.T. Harvey & Associates where she leads their fish ecology division and North Coast office in Arcata, CA. Sharon’s expertise spans over 25 years and her recent professional research and work has focused on integrating watershed and coastal processes and the freshwater, estuarine, and coastal ecology of fishes. Sharon was an active Humboldt Bay Initiative Core Team member during the development of their strategic plan and one of the founding CEINC board members.

Jeff Anderson


Jeff Anderson, Northern Hydrology & Engineering, is a civil engineer with more than 25 years of experience, including 20 years of experience as an independent consultant .  His consulting experience includes hydrology, river, lake, and estuary hydraulics/hydrodynamics, water quality and sediment transport modeling, assessing the effects of sea level rise and climate change on water resources, stream and wetland restoration, watershed hydrology and water quality, surface water quality studies, watershed management, urban stormwater technologies, onsite and small community wastewater systems, and wetland treatment systems.  Mr. Anderson has applied and/or developed 1-D and multi-dimensional models for hydrologic, hydraulic/hydrodynamic, and water quality studies of rivers, estuaries, lakes, and watersheds and has designed numerous channel restoration projects.  He has worked on hydrologic, hydraulic, sediment TMDL, and sediment transport issues.  His experience includes serving as project or principal engineer on projects for the City of Arcata, Oregon Trout, EPA, the Nature Conservancy, and the Bureau of Reclamation as well as serving as part-time faculty of Humboldt State University’s Department of Environmental Resource Engineering.

Whelan Gilkerson


Whelan has been involved with the Humboldt Bay Initiative since 2009 and joined the CEINC Board of Directors in 2017. He is a landscape ecologist and GIS analyst/modeler with 13 years of professional experience involving marine, estuarine, and watershed resource management issues in coastal northern California. Whelan holds degrees in Ecology and Natural Resources Planning and currently works as a Senior Biologist for Merkel and Associates, Inc. He has worked  with a broad range of entities in addressing eelgrass resource management and conservation issues and has been involved in supporting sea level rise (SLR) effects assessments for eelgrass ecosystems along the Pacific Coast from Alaska to Baja California. In his free time, Whelan enjoys biking, hiking, kayaking, gardening and spending time with his family in the Humboldt Bay area.

Marissa Adams

Treasurer, Administrator


Marissa is an environmental communications specialist with over 15 years of experience in the field of water resources and environmental planning. She specializes in watershed conservation, regional environmental planning, environmental communication, and public involvement and participation. Her previous experience includes work for the San Francisco Estuary Partnership, Association of Bay Area Governments, and various private consulting firms. Marissa is a hydrophite who thrives on making environmental processes and information more understandable and approachable in order to get back to the core intent of our environmental laws and regulations.  She is currently a Project Manager with California Trout. In addition to serving as Treasurer, Marissa provides administrative and program support to CEINC.

Adam Wagschal


Adam as been working on Humboldt Bay related policies and projects since 2008. He has background in conservation planning, fisheries, environmental regulation, spatial analysis, and project management and currently serves as a conservation planner and regulatory specialist for ICF. Adam has a B.S. in Marine Fisheries and an M.S. in Geography/Spatial Analysis.

Aldaron Laird


Aldaron Laird has been a consulting environmental planner for 30 years. He specializes in regulatory compliance for aquatic enhancement projects, historical research of coastal waters, and sea level rise vulnerability assessments and adaptation planning, with an emphasis on the Humboldt Bay region. In 2013, Aldaron produced a comprehensive shoreline inventory and mapping of Humboldt Bay and completed a sea level rise vulnerability of the shoreline. He has since prepared sea level rise vulnerability assessments covering the entire Humboldt Bay for Local Coastal Program authorities and Caltrans. Aldaron is co-chair of Humboldt State University’s Sea Level Rise Initiative, founding member of the Coastal Conservancy’s Coastal Resiliency Network, and has contributed to California’ Climate Change Assessments. In his spare time he hikes and paddles throughout Humboldt Bay photographing, which he loves to share with the community.

Advisory Board Members:

  • Mike Wallace, California Department of Fish and Wildlife ("Retired") (2019-present)

A huge “Thank you” to our previous board members:

  • Jill Demers (2016-2019)
  • John Driscoll (2012-2014)
  • Bob Gearheart (2012-2014)
  • Becky Price-Hall (2010-2017 - Founding Board member)
  • Dr. Frank Shaughnessy (2010-2017 - Founding Board member)
  • Susan Schlosser (2010-2017)