bio cropped2I am the aquatic ecologist of the Pacific Island Network (PACN) of the Inventory and Monitoring Division (IMD) of the U.S. National Park Service (NPS). My job is to collect data on ecosystem status and trends, and report that data to parks. I work in all the parks in the pacific, collecting data on groundwater, water quality, streams, and anchialine pools. I’m stationed at Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park on the big island of Hawai’i, and travel to Maui, Moloka’i, Guam, Saipan, and American Samoa. I earned a Ph.D. in Zoology and Ecology from Michigan State University in 2002, an MS in Biology from the University of Pittsburgh in 1996, and also have a BS in Biology and BA in the History and Philosophy of Science.

Before coming to NPS, I was a research ecologist at the National Exposure Research Laboratory of the Environmental Protection Agency in Cincinnati, OH. There I worked on PCB transfer from aquatic to terrestrial food-webs, mercury cycling in aquatic food webs, and development of resource shed analysis. Prior to that I was a research aquatic biologist at the Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in Ann Arbor, MI. While there I worked on evaluating methods to prevent invasive species introductions, and supported the NOAA National Center for Research on Aquatic Invasive Species.

I am exploring a career-change into NPS management, in order to have a larger influence on scientifically-based stewardship of natural resources. I initially became an ecologist to have a positive impact on environmental issues, if indirectly, running basic-science studies through their full lifecycle. As a federal researcher I managed projects and small programs and communicated applied-science. I’m now using this experience to monitor natural resources, improve protocol implementation, supervise staff, and lead programs. Over time my work has become more directly focused on natural resource stewardship. Hence a change to management is a natural progression of evolving professional goals now aligned with the NPS’s mission.

This website was established to summarize my professional experience. To learn more about scientific studies I’ve implemented glance through my science portfolio. To better understand the program I am currently running look through my management portfolio. My scientific products are listed under communication. I discuss personnel management under supervision, and program management under leadership.

I’m also on Linked-In, ResearchGate, Academia.edu, Twitter, Facebook, and have some other blogs: River Continua, and Pacific Panoramas.  To learn more about PACN you can go to both our website and blog. The Inventory and Monitoring Program is quite large, consisting of 31 networks that organize all 401 National Park units. But while you’re at it go outside visit a national park – I fully agree they’re one of America’s best ideas.

To contact me call 808-985-6325 (Hawaii time!), email me at david_raikow@nps.gov, or use the contact form.