Dr. James E. Eckman, a biological oceanographer and longtime senior science administrator at the Office of Naval Research in Arlington, Va., has been named director of La Jolla-based California Sea Grant.
"Jim Eckman brings a fine mix of stellar leadership skills and excellent research credentials that will enable Sea Grant to continue its upward momentum," says Scripps Institution of Oceanography Director Dr. Tony Haymet.
Eckman comes to Sea Grant having led ONR’s flagship Marine Mammals and Biological Oceanography Program (and its predecessor programs) for the last 13 years. The marine mammal program, with an annual budget of about $14 million, supports basic and applied research related to understanding the effects of sound on marine mammals and the interactions between marine biota and sound or light.
“I genuinely miss an academic environment, and the stimulation of day-to-day contact with research, students and scientific colleagues,” Dr. Eckman says, explaining his interest in California Sea Grant, which is based at the world-renowned Scripps in La Jolla. “I have a sincere wish to apply my skills to research that can solve serious societal problems related to our oceans.”
His official first day at the helm of California Sea Grant will be Jan. 3.