ReefDoctor was founded by Roderick Stein-Rostaing and Daniel Presman in July 2000.
The ReefDoctor team is made up of International and Malagasy staff who are professionals in their respective fields, students from the Marine Institute (IH.SM) and local Malagasy from villages within the Bay of Ranobe.
Roderick has BSc in Marine Biology from Swansea University. He is a PADI Dive Master and has worked previously on reef conservation projects in the Philippines and as a divemaster in the Whitsunday Islands, Australia. As co-founder and director, Rod provides the direction and impetus for all of our overseas operations.
Shane M Abeare, MSc, MSc, PhD candidate
Certified Visual Cylinder Inspector and Bauer Compressor Technician
Shane is the on-site Director of the ReefDoctor team, and a PhD student in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of New Orleans. He earned a BSc in biology (chemistry minor), from the University of Michigan, an MSc in African Mammalogy at the University of Pretoria, South Africa, and another MSc in Oceanography and Coastal Science (statistics minor) at Louisiana State University. Shane has assisted/led wildlife research projects all over the world, working on subjects as diverse as fungi in the Amazon, bats in Papua New Guinea and Australia, buffalo and Great White sharks in South Africa, and grizzly bears in the American West. In addition to field research skills, Shane brings to RD his experience in protected area management and sustainable development gained while a Peace Corps volunteer in Togo, West Africa, then as national park manager in Togo, and while working in the management of a national park in the Republic of the Congo. For his PhD research, Shane will be addressing coastal fisheries management issues in the Bay of Ranobe, Madagascar. In particular, he will be assessing the state/productivity of the artisanal coral reef fisheries, and the role of seagrass and mangrove habitats in reef fish population dynamics.
(1964 – 2004)
Co-founder of ReefDoctor Daniel sadly passed away in 2004. He will surely be missed by his friends, family, the ReefDoctor team and the local community he helped. His memory lives on in the work of ReefDoctor, in particular the reef restoration programme which he worked passionately on to implement.
Robert has been a strong supporter of ReefDoctor since its inception and became a director in 2004. He comes from a background in the technology industry where, as an entrepreneur, he built and sold his first company by the age of 24. He now has a wide variety of interests and directorships with a recent focus on the TV & Film industry where he has his own production company. Robert has a Geography Degree from King’s, London, is a PADI Advanced diver, and an active member and ambassador for the Royal Geographical Society.
Head Science Officer
Since her arrival at ReefDoctor in 2005, Emma has gained the experience, tools and resources to become a specialist in the field of marine research, project management and community development. These skills provide her with the ability to develop long-term strategies for tangible poverty alleviation and ecosystem conservation to benefit coastal communities and safeguard biodiversity of the region.
Lucy began her career as a marine biologist by studying Marine Biology at the University of Plymouth where she volunteered with the Marine Biological Association developing and teaching marine ecology courses for local schools. This is where she acquired her love for teaching and found it a great medium for accomplishing her goal of marine conservation through education. After completing her degree she decided to develop these interests and volunteered with Coral Cay Conservation in the Philippines, Lucy’s first real taste of basic living and she found she excelled in this environment. During her time in the Philippines Lucy provided high quality environmental and conservation education for young adults, passing on her knowledge of the reef system (fish, corals and invertebrates) as well as qualifying as a PADI divemaster. This was the start of Lucy’s diverse marine education career that included shark research station in the Bahamas, Coral Cay Conservation in Cambodia, and Operation Wallacea in Mozambique teaching reef ecology programs and co-ordinating all survey dives.
Beth graduated from Plymouth University with a first class degree in Marine Biology (BSc Hons) where her research focused on the ecology of kelp-associated marine ecosystems and biologically generated habitat. During her time at university, Beth completed her HSE commercial diving license and assistant instructor, provoked by her interest of the ocean and diving. After completing her degree, Beth travelled extensively in Indo-China, where she completed her SSI Divemaster in Koh Tao, Thailand. As a dive professional, Beth is now utilising her marine biological background and diving experience as a Science Officer at ReefDoctor. Here, Beth is following her aspiration of combining marine biology with diving by teaching volunteers and interns about marine conservation and leading projects to better understand the Bay of Ranobe.
Having grown up in Canada, Scott has since settled in the UK where he completed his degree in Marine Biology (BSc Hons) at Plymouth University. During his time at university, Scott found research interests in the paradoxical adverse effects of oxygen on marine organisms, particularly on anemones and corals. Whilst studying the ocean, he developed a keen interest in diving, and completed his HSE commercial diving license, divemaster and assistant instructor. After enjoying work experience as a divemaster in Iceland guiding tours in the world class dive site Silfra, Scott went on to complete his PADI instructor course in Phuket, Thailand. By joining ReefDoctor, Scott has brought his keen interests of marine biology and diving together as a Dive Officer, a great opportunity to start a lifetime career teaching and aiding conservationists in their diving endeavours.
Dan started his career in diving in the UK after which he completed a 6 months divemaster internship working with the marine conservation organisation ‘Global Vision International’, based in the Seychelles. Following his conservation/dive instructor career path, in 2011 Dan completed a 2 month instructor course in Mexico and has since worked as a dive instructor in Mexico and Peru. Dan has also experiance the underwater world of Florida, North Carolina, Spain, Canary Islands and Greece and aims to keep combining his love of teaching and diving with conservation of the marine environment.
Originally from Tamatave (main port city on the east coast of Madagascar over 1,000km north east of Toliara), Christina initially came to ReefDoctor to work with the primary school teachers in Ifaty and to develop ReefDoctor’s marine and environmental curriculum. Christina is now responsible for on-site administration and running the family planning clinic at ReefDoctor. She also works with the women’s association FIVETAMI, helping to develop future business projects and teaching embroidery. Additional she works with the villagers on developing alternative livelihoods designed to reduce fishing pressure on the marine environment and promotes conservation issues in the village including workshops on AIDS, family planning and health and hygiene practices.
Marie Alice Rosine
Accounting and Administration
Alice is a new member of staff from Toliara. She is in charge of accounting and helps out with administration.
Jack is a freelance conservation journalist who has written many articles for magazines such as The Ecologist. After years in the competitive market of freelance journalism, Jack developed a growing concern for the lack of clear and concise information on the effects of environmental and climate change. Jack found a growing need for journalists to translate scientist information into an easy-to-read format that the general public would understand. Therefore, Jack decided to turn his skills to conservation, communication and awareness. This brought him to the attention of ReefDoctor where he has been working for the past 8 months. Jack joined the research team in Madagascar in the beginning of November in an attempt to provide up-to-date information on the amazing projects taking place at ReefDoctor, Madagascar, saying ‘One of the major problems at ReefDoctor is that the staff, being scientists, are focused on conservation and the local community, it leaves little time to tell the rest of the world what a great job they are doing.’
Local Malagasy Staff
ReefDoctor’s boatman extraordinaire, Manjo, is responsible for running boat excursions start-to-finish, assessing sea conditions for dives and surveys and for ongoing technical maintenance. His boating skills are second to none and are only exceeded by his can-do attitude and constant smile.
Victor is our head chef and is responsible for cooking all of our meals, combining Malagasy and Western cooking styles
Azy, our cook, is from Ifaty and lives on the property with her family. She cooks in a traditional Malagasy style using regional produce brought in from Toliara.
As the person in charge of ReefDoctor’s marine museum, Lebon guides tourists and provides them with information about the museum exhibits. Additionally, he assists the education staff with school visits and ReefDoctor’s kids club program.
Jonny is from Ifaty village and is ReefDoctor’s grounds keeper.
External Scientific Consultants
Dr Vivienne Johnson, PhD
Viv holds a BSc (Hons) in Marine Biology and a MSc in Tropical Coastal Management from Newcastle University. She completed her PhD, researching the effects of ocean acidification on marine ecosystems, at Plymouth University in 2012. Viv has worked as a science officer at ReefDoctor in 2008 and 2012. She has also gained marine research experience from a variety of other locations around the world such as Honduras, Thailand, Seychelles, South Africa and North Madagascar. She is currently based in the UK where she acts as a support officer to the ReefDoctor program.
Maria is a PhD fisheries research student at Plymouth University. She acts as a marine research, marketing and NGO funding consultant for ReefDoctor.