Ryan Fikes


I’m gay and I’m a coastal scientist. //

I serve as Staff Scientist for the National Wildlife Federation’s Gulf of Mexico Restoration Program. I provide in-house scientific expertise to identify and evaluate restoration projects in the Gulf of Mexico that are scientifically sound, integrate with other projects, and have measurable milestones and outcomes. In addition, I advise the program on issues associated with the effects of oil spills on habitats and wildlife, I assist in evaluating the merits of state and national restoration plans, and I help to prioritize various restoration projects across the region. Prior to this position I worked with federal, state, and local agencies, NGOs, businesses, industry and private citizens to conserve, protect, and restore vital ecosystems of the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean. Through management of strategic partnerships, I worked to leverage existing resources to promote and facilitate conservation of the health and productivity of these ecosystems and their resources. My past research experience includes Lab Operations Manager for the Harte Research Institute, Research Assistant at the Center for Coastal Studies, Texas Parks & Wildlife Department’s Coastal Fisheries Division, and Research Coordinator for the Pollution Prevention Partnership. I also served as a fellow for the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Bocas del Toro, Panama.