About our Faculty


Dr. Sean Anderson

Associate Professor of Environmental Science and Resource Management

California State University Channel Islands


c (805) 732-2732

Sean AndersonMini Biosketch

Dr. Sean Anderson is a broadly trained ecologist who has tackled environmental questions from Alaska to the South Pole.  Sean joined the then three-year old California State University Channel Islands in 2005, creating both his PIRatE Lab and a unique coastal restoration curriculum.  His novel approach to teaching emphasizes community service and includes signature courses wherein students travel to distant communities such as New Orleans, Louisiana and in the Cook Islands to assess coastal systems.  His annual class to New Orleans, Louisiana pushes undergraduates to examine drivers of wetland loss and policy failures, conduct post-Hurricane Katrina (and post-Deepwater Horizon) environmental impact assessments, rebuild homes, install community food gardens, and embed themselves within local communities and cultures.  Sean’s energetic and innovative teaching efforts have garnered several local and national awards and spawned the eponymous “Sean Anderson” character (played by Josh Hutcherson) in Warner Brother’s Journey film franchise.

Sean’s research centers around restoring degraded ecosystems and improving the management of the coastal zone.  His large-scale ecological restoration projects across California, Louisiana, and eastern Turkey usually focus on wetland, riparian, or coastal strand systems.  His coastal zone management work includes quantifying the effects of roads on mobile animals in southern California (now using a citizen science iPhone app), evaluating the sustainability of seafood options available for purchase in California, assessing the efficacy of Marine Protected Areas with Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs), longitudinal research into opinions and understanding of coastal management, monitoring coastal health with of aerial robotic sensor platforms, cultivating and recovering endangered plants, developing the first rapid assessment protocols to measure the health of sandy beaches, and assessing the impact of pollutants on marine and estuarine systems.  He created and now co-leads the NCEAS National Working Group on the Ecotoxicology of Gulf Oil Spill, the only independent national body investigating the long-term ecological consequences of the largest marine oil spill in history.  Sean is an elected or appointed member of several working groups, boards, joint power authorities, and Scientific Advisory Panels.

Dr. Clare Steele

Lecturer of Environmental Science and Resource Management

California State University Channel Islands


Dr. Clare Steele is a marine ecologist with extensive experience in marine and coastal environments around the world, conducting research and rapid resource assessments to enable informed management decisions. Clare’s research has focused on assessing the benefits of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) and community-based resource management to reef fish assemblages and artisanal fisheries. In southern California, her research has focused on fish productivity within natural kelp and artificial reefs as well as quantifying the impact of beach grooming and nourishment on sandy beach infaunal communities. She is also a dedicated teacher inside and outside the classroom. She has a long commitment to providing research opportunities to her undergraduate students in the lab and in the field. Clare is currently working with various student groups, including CI classes, CI capstone students, Project ACCESO’s Summer Research Institute and NOAA’s B-WET program. All of these funded research opportunities allow students to delve more deeply into educational and research experiences across California’s coastal zone and at CSUCI’s underg\research station on Santa Rosa Island.

Dr. John Lambrinos

Associate Professor of Horticulture

Oregon State University


Dr. Lambrinos


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