Suncoast Waterkeeper’s Executive Director, Justin Bloom, got his JD at Tulane Law School and has been a practicing environmental attorney specializing in prosecuting pollution cases and representing communities for over 18 years. His experience includes investigation, enforcement and litigation of Clean Water Act violations and “Toxic Tort” cases. He has successfully represented many plaintiffs affected by the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill and other oil spills in the US. Prior to returning to the Suncoast, he worked in New York City as Waterkeeper Alliance’s Eastern Regional Director. Justin’s family first came to the area in the ‘70s. He attended New College, where he graduated with a concentration in environmental studies in 1991.
The Suncoast Waterkeeper is Andy Mele, former Executive Director of a major Hudson River environmental group that was instrumental in forcing General Electric to remove 300,000 pounds of toxic PCBs from the Hudson. He is author of Polluting for Pleasure (W.W. Norton), the book that rendered the old two-stroke outboard motor all but extinct, keeping millions of gallons of oil and gasoline from American waterways every year. Andy has an MS in environmental science, Bard College.
Charles Kovach is Chief Scientist for Suncoast Waterkeeper and science advisor to several other environmental organizations. Charles was educated in marine biology at the Universities of South Florida (MS) and Miami (BS), and served as Senior Scientist for the Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Southwest District Office in Tampa for 17 yrs. He has successfully implemented aerial and satellite remote sensing projects in the Gulf of Mexico region for the past decade, including the development of coastal nutrient criteria with the assistance of NOAA and NASA in particular. He spent 180 days at sea chasing oil from Key West to the Macondo wellhead over the year-and-a-half following the Deepwater Horizon disaster.