The Offshore New Harbor Expedition Team

Steve Pekar Photo

Stephen Pekar – Professor and team leader of the ONH expedition
Dr. Steve Pekar is a geology professor at Queens College and team leader of the Offshore New Harbor Expedition. His research focuses on studying past climate and oceanic changes that have occurred millions of years ago when the Earth was much warmer than today. This will be his third season to Antarctica. 


Marvin Speece PhotoMarvin Speece – Professor and lead geophysical scientist
Dr. Marvin Speece is a professor of geophysical engineering at Montana Tech in Butte, Montana. He specializes in seismic reflection data collection, processing and interpretation. This is his third field season in Antarctica and he is the Co-Principal Investigator of the Offshore New Harbor Project. Dr. Speece leads the seismic data collection effort this field season.



Shakira Brown PhotoShakira Brown – Middle school teacher
Raised by a single mom in a impoverished section of Newark, N.J., Shakira Brown has become a nationally known teacher and advocate for science education in urban schools. Shakira is a middle-school science teacher at the Harlem Children’s Zone Promise Academy and will accompany the ONH team to Antarctica.  She will lead the educational outreach while in Antarctica effort for the Offshore New Harbor Expedition. This will include doing video conferencing and webcasting to schools and blogging about her experiences to organizations that work with inner city school children. Ms. Brown also works with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory to develop new science curricula for inner-city classrooms across the country.


Howard Koss PhotoHoward (Howie) Koss – graduate student at Queens College
Howie is a graduate student at Queens College, New York, studying sediments from Antarctica that are between 16 and 18 million years old in order to unravel past climate variability. In addition to the daily tasks he will be doing as scientific support as an on-ice member of the ONH Project expedition, his main focus will be educational outreach through blogging that will be available on the ONH website and through the non-profit organization Reach The World. He will also be doing video blogging for the Ice Stories program sponsored by the Exploratorium in San Francisco, California.


Andrea Balbas Photo


Andrea Balbas
Andrea Balbas grew up on the San Andreas fault in rural California. Captivated by the power of the earth she always loved Earth Science. She is currently a Queens College student studying towards her Bachelors of Science in Geology. At New Harbor she will be taking weather measurements, assisting with geophysical measurements, and producing internet media for education outreach.






Brian Williams Photo

Brian Williams
Brian is a 22 year old graduate student at Montana Tech. He am pursuing a master's degree in geophysical engineering and will assist Dr. Marvin Speece in collecting the New Harbor Antarctica seismic data. My thesis is processing last year's Granite Harbor seismic data.



David Sunwall Photo


David Sunwall
David is pursuing a M.S. in Geophysics at Montana Tech. On the ice, and will assist Dr. Marvin Speece with the seismic survey. Off the ice, he will be processing the seismic data from New Harbor.





Christy Tinto Photo


Christy Tinto
Christy is 28 years old and from Northern Ireland and is currently living in New Zealand doing a PhD in Geology at Otago University. This will be her third ANDRILL expedition and this seasin will be carrying out the gravity survey, as well as helping on the seismic project.




Eric J. Sturm PhotoEric J. Sturm
During the course of his 13-year career, Eric has worked as a Cameraman, Director, Producer and Editor.  Six of those years, including one austral winter season, were spent working for the U.S. National Science Foundation in Antarctica’s McMurdo and South Pole Stations.  His work has aired on CNN, ABC, CBS, BBC, NBC, PBS and television networks in New Zealand and Russia.  Eric will provide film and technical support on the ONH Expedition.



Arlene Nelson
Arlene has been a cinematographer, director, producer on a number of movies, which includes serving as director and producer for the acclaimed award winning HBO movie called Positively Naked. She will work off ice in collaboration with Eric in pre expedition film theme development and post expedition film production.


Joanna Lauren Cyprys Photo

Joanna Lauren Cyprys
Joanna joins the team from Global Nomads Group (GNG). She will be assisting with educational outreach as a filmmaker as well as helping to facilitate videoconferences with students in the U.S. Joanna had been with GNG for over 3 years, traveling the globe and creating educational documentaries."




Luke Wagner and Luciana Pandolfi Photo


Luke Wagner and Luciana Pandolfi – Camp manager and field cook
Luke Wagner is from Maine and Luciana Pandolfi is from Milan, Italy. Together they are the support staff for the expedition; Luci the cook and Luke the camp manager. This will be their sixth expedition to the Antarctic.






National Science Foundation

NSF Office of Polar Programs






Queens College
City University of New York
Montana Tech
Harlem Children's Zone
NY Hall of Science
Urban Science
The GLOBE Program
Reach the World
Global Nomads Group
International Polar Year
History of Winter   Ice Stories   KGNU
Center for Teaching and Learning   Blogging at Queens College