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NOAA names new leader for NOAA's National Sea Grant College Program

NOAA names new leader for NOAA's National Sea Grant College Program

Jonathan Pennock has led Sea Grant Program in New Hampshire for last decade

NOAA today announced that Jonathan R. Pennock, Ph.D., the director of New Hampshire Sea Grant and a longtime coastal scientist, will be the new leader of NOAA's National Sea Grant College Program. 

The announcement comes as Sea Grant is celebrating 50 years of serving America’s coastal and Great Lakes communities by providing innovative science to address a range of environmental and economic issues.

“Jonathan will bring to NOAA Sea Grant a strong scientific background and significant experience creating vibrant research programs and forging partnerships that are making a difference for coastal communities,” said Craig McLean, NOAA assistant administrator for NOAA Research.

In addition to serving as director of New Hampshire Sea Grant for the last 10 years, Pennock has been the deputy director of the School of Marine Science and Ocean Engineering at the University of New Hampshire.

He previously worked with both the Delaware and Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant programs, served as president of the National Sea Grant Association, and served on the NOAA Research’s Senior Research Council as the SGA representative.

Pennock fell in love with the ocean growing up in Delaware and spending part of his summer vacations exploring tidepools on the coast of Maine. While earning a bachelor’s in biology from Earlham College in Indiana, he did a semester of study on the west coast of Florida. He received a master’s in marine studies and a Ph.D. in oceanography from the University of Delaware. His connection and appreciation of Sea Grant goes back to his graduate school days when he received Sea Grant support for his doctoral research on how estuaries are affected by nutrient runoff from our land use.

Pennock will take the reins of the National Sea Grant College Program in mid-summer.

Go online to learn more about NOAA's National Sea Grant College Program. 

For more information, please contact Monica Allen, director of public affairs for NOAA Research, at 301-734-1123 or by email at

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Oceanic and Atmospheric Research (OAR) - or "NOAA Research" - provides the research foundation for understanding the complex systems that support our planet. Working in partnership with other organizational units of the NOAA, a bureau of the Department of Commerce, NOAA Research enables better forecasts, earlier warnings for natural disasters, and a greater understanding of the Earth. Our role is to provide unbiased science to better manage the environment, nationally, and globally.


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