Monthly Archives: April 2016

Skidaway Island shredding event, Saturday April 16

A shredding event in honor of recently deceased Skidaway Island resident Flip Boggs will be held on Saturday, April 16, from 9:00 a.m. to noon at the Skidaway Island Presbyterian Church. The shredding services will be provided by Savannah Shredding. Donations will benefit the local SAFE Shelter for victims of domestic violence. For additional information, contact Ray or Diane Krstolic at 598-8303.


New grad student in Frischer lab

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERALauren Lampoley is a new graduate student in Marc Frischer’s lab.

Lauren was born and raised in Fort Wayne, Ind., and received her undergraduate degree in biology in December 2015 from Purdue University. In January of this year, she began graduate school at Savannah State University studying marine science. Lauren is working on Marc’s doliolid project.

Lauren enjoys cycling, hiking and watching movies.

“I am really excited to be here at Skidaway,” Lauren said. “Everyone is kind and treats me like family. I could not have imagined a better place to do research.”

Gray’s Reef to host MATE ROV competition

The Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary will host the Southeast Regional MATE ROV completion on Saturday, April 30, at the Chatham County Aquatic Center on Sally Mood Drive.

The theme of this year’s event is “ROV Encounters in Inner and Outer Space – NASA’s mission from the Gulf of Mexico to Jupiter’s moon Europa.”

ROV Pic w

The primary mission of the Marine Advanced Technology Education (MATE) Center is to provide the marine technical workforce with appropriately educated workers and to use marine technology to create interest in and improve STEM education.

The participating teams are typically students from middle school through college. There are four classes of competition, the winner of the RANGER-class (intermediate competition aimed at middle and high school teams) will move up to the MATE International Competition at NASA’s Johnson Space Center.

Organizer Jody Patterson is looking for volunteers to help with the event. Contact her at 598-2431.

Aaron joins Skidaway as IT Director


Wayne Aaron joins Skidaway Institute as the new Information Technology Director. Wayne comes from Savannah Country Day School where he worked for 25 years, as Director of Information Services and, most recently, Director of Facilities and Security.

Wayne is a graduate of Eastern Kentucky University with a B.S. in Geology and an M.S.  Geochemistry.

Wayne is married with three daughters and three grandsons. He also coached girls’ soccer at Savannah Country Day School.

Julia Diaz receives faculty research grant

Skidaway Institute scientist Julia Diaz has received a $10 thousand faculty research grant from the UGA Vice President of Research. Julia will use the grant to continue her research into diatom exoenzymes as potential drivers of marine biogeochemistry.


According to Julia, diatoms are critical members of marine phytoplankton communities, where they are responsible for roughly 40 percent of global primary productivity. By shaping the global biogeochemical cycles of carbon, oxygen, and nutrients such as phosphorus, diatoms influence marine ecosystem health, control the ocean’s ability to absorb the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide, and thereby shape the ocean’s role in the global climate system.

“Over the past decade, I have been studying the cellular fluxes and large-scale environmental implications of phosphorus acquisition and reactive oxygen species (ROS) production by diatoms,” Juia said. “Through my previous research, I have identified key diatom-driven biogeochemical transformations of phosphorus and reactive oxygen species for which no enzymatic mechanism is currently known. However, these data indicate a clear role for extracellular enzymes.”

Julia’s larger goal is to develop a research program examining the biogeochemical processes that shape marine ecosystem health, natural resources and climate. “The aim of this proposed research is to uncover the molecular underpinnings of these key, diatom-driven transformations of phosphorus and ROS,” she said.

Skidaway building repurposing project on Governor’s desk

The Georgia General Assembly approved a $3 million bond package in the FY17 state budget to renovate and re-purpose the old Roebling cattle barn. The budget currently awaits the governor’s signature.

The circa-1947 building is in poor condition and is not currently functional as laboratory, teaching or meeting spaces. Renovations will allow UGA Skidaway Institute to re-purpose the 14,000 square foot facility to include research laboratories, a teaching laboratory and lecture space for students and community groups.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The renovated facility will become home to the Center for Coastal Hydrology and Marine Processes (CHAMP), with a focus on research and education directed toward understanding influences on coastal systems and the wise stewardship of coastal resources.

The governor has 40 days to approve or reject all or parts of the budget, which will go into effect on July 1.