Dr. Russell Brown

Population Dynamics Branch Chief

Before becoming PopDy chief, Dr. Russell Brown served as the Woods Hole Laboratory Director and Deputy Director of the Northeast Fisheries Science Center from 2012 – 2016. He joined the Northeast Fisheries Science Center in 1994, working initially as a stock assessment biologist studying Georges Bank and Gulf of Maine haddock and Georges Bank winter flounder. From 1999 – 2002, he focused his research on U.S. Atlantic salmon populations and contributed to international efforts to assess and manage North Atlantic salmon populations. He was a member of the U.S. Atlantic Salmon Assessment team and ICES North Atlantic Salmon working group. He served as the Chief Science Advisor for the U.S. delegation to the North Atlantic Salmon Conservation Organization, which negotiates international regulations and research programs affecting Atlantic salmon.

From 2002-2012, Dr. Brown led the Ecosystem Surveys Branch. He planned and coordinated a large scale research calibration program as the Northeast Fisheries Science Center transitioned its multispecies bottom trawl surveys to a modern research vessel platform and utilize highly standardized gear and survey methods. He also oversaw the transition of two major shellfish surveys (sea scallop and surfclam/ocean quahog) from government research vessels to UNOLS and industry vessel platforms. He served as the Chief Scientist on the initial research cruise that NOAA Fisheries launched to investigate the impact of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. He has worked extensively with stakeholders to enhance communications and stakeholder knowledge through the Mid-Atlantic and New England Trawl Survey Advisory Panel and the Marine Resource Education Program.

Dr. Brown earned a B.S. in Fisheries and Wildlife Science at Cornell University, an M.S. in Fisheries Science and a Ph.D. in Fisheries Science and Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Michigan State University. During his graduate studies, he focused on environmental factors affecting the early life history and recruitment of lake whitefish and rainbow smelt in the Great Lakes.