Randy Donowitz has been keeping aquariums most of his life. During the mid 1980s and 90s he was consumed with the breeding of African Cichlids. In 1994 he purchased his first marine system- a simple 55 gallon reef setup and he has been an incurable coralholic ever since. Randy's articles have appeared in numerous hobbyist publications including Aquarium Frontiers, Advanced Aquarist, Marine Fish and Reef USA Annual and Aquarium Fish magazine. Currently, he curates and maintains the 3 system, 700 gallon coral reef display at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, NY where he enjoys the privilege of sharing his knowledge and love of the hobby with students, staff, and community members from around the Tri-State area.
Brian Cook is an artist and graphic designer from South Florida, presently living in New York City. He is pursuing his graduate degree in the History of Art at Hunter College and is currently employed in the Writing and Tutorial Center at the Pratt Institute. In March of 2014, he finally started up his first 20 gallon reef tank, learning much from many of the best hobbyists in the country.
Lemon TeaYK is a Singaporean aquarist with a deep interest for reef fish. His passion and pursuit for rare and exotic fish species has fueled his travels all across Southeast Asia, Japan, Australia and the United States, where he’s seen firsthand some of the best private home collections anywhere. His travels have allowed him to meet and talk to a myriad of industry experts, divers with niche specialization as well as relevant authorities of their respective fields, which bides his unquenchable thirst for knowledge. He is also an accomplished photographer and his photos are often used in magazines, books and other publications. At 22, Lemon is one of the youngest minds of the industry with a well-traveled repertoire and a deep understanding and knowledge on his expertise. Although well versed in other aspects of the hobby, his interests primarily lie in fish and he’s currently the senior editor for that department on ReefBuilders.
Ret Talbot is an award-winning freelance writer and photographer who frequently covers fisheries at the intersection of science and sustainability. He is best known for his data-centered, investigative pieces in publications like Discover Magazine and CORAL Magazine. His multi-part series on the sustainability of the aquarium trade in CORAL, as well as his book Banggai Cardinalfish (Reef to Rainforest Media 2013), has brought attention to the socio-economic and environmental benefits of a sustainable aquarium trade, as well as the need for comprehensive aquarium trade reform. He lives in coastal Maine, where he blogs regularly at his own Good Catch Blog (www.GoodCatchBlog.com).
Richard Aspinall has worked in the conservation field for over two decades and has been photographing the underwater world since he learnt to dive seven years ago. Richard is now a freelance writer and photographer and works for a number of magazines. Richard is also the editor of UltraMarine Magazine, the UK’s premier magazine for marine aquarists . Richard also shoots the world above the water line and runs another photography and journalism business: Aspinallink along with his wife Angela, he is based in Yorkshire, England. See more at: www.triggerfishphotography.com www.aspinallink.co.uk
Joe Rowlett has a B.Sc. in zoology and an entirely unhealthy obsession with evolutionary biology and phylogenetics. He oversaw the marine livestock at Old Town Aquarium for many years, and before that he serviced aquaria (including Michael Jordan's). He currently studies prairie insect ecology at the Field Museum of Natural History. At home, Joe has an algae-filled reef tank stocked with three Chrysiptera.
Austin Lefevre installs and maintains upscale aquariums and works closely with a local aquaculture facility propagating corals. Austin has been in the aquarium industry since 2003, working with marine fish and invertebrates, along with freshwater fish, plants and invertebrates. He's been an avid SCUBA diver since the age of 12 and consistently seeks new aquatic adventures.
Todd Gardner has been studying marine life since he was old enough to walk. He has an extensive background in marine sciences and has written numerous scientific and popular articles about his research and experiences collecting, keeping, and culturing marine organisms. In 1993 he graduated from East Stroudsburg University with a Bachelor of Science degree in biology and marine science. After graduation he spent a year working for Blue Earth Films, assisting in the production of a National Geographic Explorer feature film about coastal marine life. Todd spent the next 3 years working at the world's largest marine ornamental fish hatchery, where he worked on developing technology for the production of new marine species. In 1998 Todd left commercial aquaculture to pursue a Master of Science degree in biology at New York's Hofstra University where he completed a thesis on the early nutrition of the lined seahorse, Hippocampus erectus. Todd is currently working as an aquarist at Atlantis Marine World where he cares for a number of exhibit tanks, leads collecting expeditions, and continues his aquaculture research behind the scenes. In his spare time, Todd dives, photographs marine life and plays in a blues band.
Adrian Shirk is a writer and radio producer. She’s a columnist at Catapult, and her work has otherwise appeared in The Atlantic, Atlas Obscura and The Morning News, among others. She teaches English and Gender Studies at Pratt Institute, and is working on a book about American women prophets and spiritual icons. Follow her @adrianshirk.
Josh Saul is a consultant for Fortune 500 finance and banking companies. He has been involved in the aquarium hobby for 15 years and has been SCUBA diving for over 20. He spends his spare time planning dive trips, designing websites, DJing, and finding new and exciting ways to flood his apartment.