Island Institute "staff portrait" showing our personal and professional passions and commitments


Click on a staff member's name to read their full bio:


  • VP of Media and Communications

    Marydale sets and guides the strategy for all communications, websites, social media and public relations messages to consistently articulate the Island Institute’s mission.

  • Kathy Allen
    Executive Assistant

    Kathy Allen is the Executive Associate at the Island Institute, serving as an assistant to Rob Snyder and performing administrative duties, scheduling, and logistical and operational functions.

  • Chief Talent Officer

    Karen works across teams at Island Institute to maximize the contributions of individuals through personal and organizational professional development. She also oversees the technical and administrative aspects of our human resources operations.

  • Nancy Carter
    Human Resources

    Nancy is responsible for the Human Resource management functions at the Island Institute.

  • Heather Deese
    Executive Vice President

    As Executive Vice President, Heather plays a critical role in assisting the Island Institute’s president, serving as the second-in-command, and providing strategic leadership and professional guidance to the organization.

  • President

    Rob is responsible for working with island and remote coastal leaders to identify innovative approaches to community sustainability.

  • Vice President, Development

    Michelle Tussing oversees all fundraising and development activities, and helping build the Institute’s visibility, impact, and financial resources.

  • Eric Waters
    Senior Vice President and CFO

    Eric Waters oversees all financial operations of the Island Institute and also leads the organization’s day-to-day operations.


  • Kendra Denny
    Archipelago Product Coordinator

    Kendra is responsible for managing Archipelago’s product inventory, updating the store website, processing web orders, and assists in wholesale purchasing.

  • Leslie Glover
    Archipelago Customer Service Associate

    Leslie’s primary responsibilities include customer service, merchandising, and organizing the stock room.

  • Frances Holdgate
    Assistant Manager

    Frances coordinates and participates in the retail store and gallery’s day to day activities, including vendor recruitment and relationship management; merchandising; purchasing; and management of Archipelago’s staff.

  • Lisa Mossel Vietze
    Archipelago Director

    Lisa is responsible for creating an arts-oriented retail and gallery space that promotes island and coastal artists in support of Archipelago’s mission as a program of the Island Institute.


  • Tom Groening
    Working Waterfront Editor
  • Media Specialist

    Kim is responsible for managing our website and supports the media team through the execution of online editorial projects including our “What Works” solutions library.

  • Media Associate

    Jack supports the media team through the execution of online editorial projects, including our “What Works” solutions library, and produces journalistic and visual content to support our work with island and coastal communities.


  • Cathy Frederick
    Finance Associate

    Cathy provides general clerical assistance to the Finance Department staff, including the performance of accounts payable, data entry, filing, and administrative tasks.


  • Development Associate - Membership

    Hannah is responsible for maintaining and growing our annual fundraising through management of the Island Institute’s membership program.

  • Janet Bosworth
    Grants Associate

    Janet provides support to the Grants Director.

  • Kate Elmes
    Major Gift Associate

    Kate supports the president, vice president of strategic development and the donor relations director in their roles as major gift officers. She coordinates all aspects of major donor events and other major donor contact.

  • Joyelle Jones
    Development Associate

    Joyelle is responsible for gift processing, information management, and administrative support for the organization’s fundraising activities.

  • Campaign Director

    Beth is responsible for leading the implementation and successful completion of a three-year comprehensive capital campaign that garners support from individuals, foundations, corporations, and government agencies. As a …

  • Julia Maher
    Director of Foundation and Government Support

    Julia is responsible for expanding grant and government funding for all our programming areas, working with each program director to ensure that the Island Institute continues to grow funding in ways that directly respond to our communities’ needs.


  • Community Energy Associate

    Ben partners with Maine island communities to support the development of renewable energy projects, strategic energy planning initiatives, and community-based energy efficiency projects.

  • Susie Arnold
    Marine Scientist

    Susie works primarily on the impacts of climate change and ocean acidification on marine resources and fisheries dependent communities.

  • Nick Battista
    Marine Programs Director

    Nick spends his days helping fishermen and coastal communities understand emerging issues that impact the fisheries resource, fishermen, and the economics of the industry.

  • Education Associate

    Tess provides broad support for the Education Program with an emphasis on collaborative networks among educators through the use of distance learning technologies in innovative educational environments.

  • Rebecca Clark Uchenna
    Marine Programs Associate

    Rebecca works on regional ocean planning in the Northeast, and provides information and support to fishermen interested in aquaculture.

  • Kristin Collins
    Operations Director

    Kristin coordinates and supports ongoing collaboration between the Programs, Finance, and Development teams through information systems and process management. She manages the efficient administration and reporting of federal grants compliance, IT systems and integration, and building operations.

  • Marine Economic Development Associate

    James works closely with the marine resources and economic development teams to assist island and remote coastal fisherman with their businesses through increased marketing, value-added products, and aquaculture.

  • Community Energy Director

    Suzanne leads the Institute’s award-winning initiatives on community-based energy efficiency, locally-owned renewable energy, offshore wind, and energy education.

  • Economic Development Associate

    Stephenie provides support for programs that address island and remote coastal communities’ priorities related to strengthening diverse economies and workforce development initiatives.

  • Caroline Moore
    Community Development Associate

    Caroline provides outreach to students from Maine's year-round islands through coordinating our scholarship and transition support programs, including the Geiger Scholarship and our MAP (Mentoring, Access, and Persistence) Program. She also provides programmatic support for other community development efforts, including the Island Fellows program and the Maine Islands Coalition.

  • Sally Perkins
    Programs Associate

    Sally assists in planning and coordinating events for all programs departments.

  • Community Energy Associate

    Harry assists the Gulf of Maine’s year round islands in implementing numerous programs focused on efficiency upgrades, education, and community owned renewable energy.

  • Kate Tagai
    Community Development Director

    Kate oversees the Institute’s core community development programs including Island Fellows, scholarships and transition programing, and the Maine Islands Coalition.

  • Community Development Associate

    Andy is responsible for providing support for programming related to strengthening diverse community development initiatives, including the Island Fellows program and alumni network, the Maine Islands Coalition, and mentoring and transition support programing.

  • Education Director

    Yvonne works closely with island and coastal schools to develop and implement education programs that address their unique educational challenges and opportunities.

  • Economic Development Director

    Briana is responsible for overseeing programming that addresses island and remote coastal communities’ priorities related to strengthening diverse economies, and workforce development initiatives.

  • Community Energy Manager

    Brooks works closely with island communities to assist with programming in energy efficiency, community-owned renewable energy, offshore wind and energy education.


  • Swan's Island Fire and Rescue Fellow

    Gideon works with the Swan’s Island Fire and Rescue services to provide community outreach, education, volunteer recruitment, training, and retention.

  • Eastport Arts Center Fellow

    Naphtali works to engage community partners to build a Makers Space in Eastport that will foster creative expression while supporting the arts based economy.

  • Deer Isle Stonington Fellow

    Dana works with the Deer Isle Stonington Elementary School to bring place based aquaculture education and mentoring opportunities to middle school students, and with the Historical Society training volunteers to use technology and catalogue the extensive collection of oral histories

  • Vinalhaven Fellow

    Hillary works with the Vinalhaven School and Partners in Island Education to build capacity in after school programs, adult learning options and parent support programs.  Hillary is a graduate of the University of Maine, …

  • Long Island Fellow

    Angelique works with the Town of Long Island developing a cohesive plan and initiatives around telemedicine and aging in place as well as networking between islands and outside agencies also interested in on-island aging.