The Seaside Seabird Sanctuary is lucky to have a wonderful team of dedicated staff and volunteers. Meet the Seaside Family below!
Melissa joined the Sanctuary in October of 2017, and she is a state and federally licensed wildlife rehabilitator. Melissa earned her Bachelor of Science in Integrative Animal Biology from the University of South Florida, and spent several years volunteering and working with different wildlife organizations. Her first internship was at the MARS Wildlife Centre on Vancouver Island, and she then went on to volunteer with Owl’s Nest Sanctuary for Wildlife while finishing her degree. Melissa completed a Fellowship at the Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife (CROW) on Sanibel Island where she worked under their veterinary team and gained advanced experience in wildlife medicine. While she has worked with a variety of species, from Harbour Seal pups to sea turtles to opossums, birds have always been her favorite and her specialty. Her favorite species are Laysan Albatrosses, but the list goes on and on. When she’s not working in our hospital, you can find Melissa tending to her garden or birding with her camera.
Justin joined the Seaside family in January of 2018. He is a US Navy veteran, it was during his time in the service that he fell in love with the ocean. Justin began his career at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium in early 2010. At the Aquarium, Justin worked in their hospital rehabilitating sick and injured marine wildlife. Now, he shares his passion for the ocean and aquatic life with our visitors here at the Sanctuary in our Eco-Discovery Center. In his spare time, Justin also volunteers for the Florida Aquarium in their sea turtle rehabilitation center and nurtures his green thumb in his native plant gardens at home.
Dylan joined the Seaside family in December of 2019. Prior to Seaside, Dylan worked at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium from 2015-2017, and as a Laboratory Technician at Marinco Bioassay Lab from 2017-2020. In addition, Dylan worked intermittently for the Florida Audubon Society since 2014. Dylan graduated from Eckerd College in 2012 with his Bachelor of Science degree and a minor in Music. When not working, Dylan can be found spoiling his pets Ozzie and Armani or enjoying Thai food.
Amy has been with the Seaside family since 2016 as an Avian Hospital Technician. Prior to coming to the Sanctuary, Amy worked as an ophthalmic technician at the Eye Institute of West Florida for over a decade. She also spent four years volunteering with the St. Petersburg Audubon Society working in their Black Skimmer Protection and Education program. Amy played a huge role in training Rufous, the Eastern Screech Owl, who was our very first Avian Ambassador after he was admitted into our hospital for treatment and deemed non-releasable. Amy and Rufous give several educational presentations a year as well as “Reading with Rufous” on the weekends. She also has begun assisting in training one of our newest residents - Cybil, the Red-shouldered Hawk. When Amy isn’t at the Sanctuary, you can find her birding or watching movies with her cat, Irban.
Bailey has volunteered in our hospital and as one of our Avian Ambassador handlers since 2020, and she was hired onto our staff in July of 2022. She graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Science degree in Wildlife Ecology & Conservation.
Chris has been with Seaside since its founding in 2016. Prior to joining Seaside, Chris worked for the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary from 2011-2016. You can find Chris outside caring for all of our permanent resident birds!
Sydney has volunteered with the Sanctuary as one of our Avian Ambassador handlers since 2020, and was hired onto our staff in December of 2022. She graduated from Eckerd College in 2022 with a degree in Animal Biology.
Diana joined the Seaside family in April of 2022 and she has finely curated our gift shop into a must-stop during your visit to the Sanctuary!
Keegan joined Seaside in March of 2023. Before joining the team, they ran teams of fundraisers for groups like The Nature Conservancy and Defenders of Wildlife. Keegan is very happy to bring their work back home and contribute to our fight for the environment on a more local scale.
When not working, you can find Keegan doing aerial acrobatics, curating collections of vintage clothing, or advocating for disability rights on behalf of Fulbright.
For partnerships, fundraising, & events please contact them at Keegan@seasideseabirdsanctuary.org
Jim joined the seaside family August of 2023.
We are so lucky to have such amazing volunteers who dedicate their time to supporting the Sanctuary and our mission. From responding to rescue calls, to assisting in the hospital, caring for our permanent resident birds, or assisting in our gift shop, they are absolutely vital to our mission!
Seaside Seabird Sanctuary
18328 Gulf Blvd., Indian Shores, FL 33785
The Seaside Seabird Sanctuary is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
Federal Tax ID #: 81-3774704
Copyright © 2020 Seaside Seabird Sanctuary - All Rights Reserved.