Meet Our People
At the heart of our organization is a profound love and appreciation for the amazing world under the surface of the sea.
In witnessing the systemic imbalance where we live, our love for the sea became an organization intent on taking action.
We’re a team of indispensable volunteers, generous experts, astounding apprentices, a motivated board of directors and administration support system that continues to keep pressing our organization ever forward.
Doug Marcy, Founder
Primed for a life of adventure and passion for the world, Doug traveled from Colorado to explore the Caribbean coast of Panama in the mid 2000’s. For the last 6 years, he has called the islands of Bocas del Toro his home.
When he saw what was happening to the coral reefs around him, and realized he could bring people together to help, it was only natural that he spearheaded the founding of Caribbean Coral Restoration Center.
Emillio Hooker, Foreman
Emillio was born and raised in Panama not far from Bocas del Toro. He is the backbone of our operation – handling all kinds of projects from master captain of MUSA to building and fixing whatever it is that we need. He is an invaluable part of our team.
Recently he assisted teaching during our Community Build and is helping train an additional series of apprentices.
Randy Cinski, Biologist, Office Manager, Diver
Randy became involved with CCRC when she met Doug in 2019. Her love and knowledge of conservation, marine life and wildlife, along with her ability to organize and delegate, made her a perfect fit for the coral restoration team. She has worked for over thirty years in the animal science fields as a veterinarian technician and wildlife biologist. She is also an avid swimmer and diver helping with whatever task needs to be completed for CCRC.
Dale Cinski, Creative Design, Diver
Dale’s passion for the arts and love of nature is the perfect combination for his role at CCRC. He is involved with daily operations, always carrying a camera when snorkeling or diving to document the mission of CCRC.
Heliberto Julian, Construction Supervisor
Born and raised in Panama, Julian came to work for CCRC in 2018. He is skilled at carpentry and artificial reef construction. Always ready to learn new techniques, he is a valuable member of the CCRC team.
Dagoberto Enrique Venera-Pontón, Biologist, Advisor, Marine Ecologist
Dago is a biologist with a doctorate in environmental and evolutionary biology. He has vast experience on coral reef ecology and his research projects extend from the Caribbean coral reefs to salt domes in the Gulf of Mexico and the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. Dago grew up in the Caribbean coast of Colombia, became a biologist at Universidad del Magdalena, and obtained his PhD from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, USA. He previously worked as a scientist at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute and currently teaches marine ecology at the School for Field Studies Center for Tropical Island Biodiversity Studies in Bocas del Toro, Panama. From his current teaching position, Dago developed a strong collaboration with Caribbean Coral Restoration, bringing students to do research in our facilities, and soon he joined our team as a scientific advisor.
Fauster Vittone, Dive Master
Fauster has been diving since 1982 and has witnessed the dramatic changes across the world’s oceans. Through his work as a Scuba Instructor and Diver for Caribbean Coral Restoration he is dedicated to preserving and restoring the waters of the Bocas Del Toro archipelago for future generations to enjoy.
Robin Perreault, Construction
Robin’s devotion to the environment was fostered at sea. She learned to scuba dive in Maine and spent much of her adult life sailing in Rhode Island and Massachusetts. She instilled a similar passion in her family and even inspired her daughter to pursue a degree in marine biology.
Since relocating to Bocas, Robin has made a huge impact on Coral Restoration Panama. Her craftsmanship, positive attitude and passion for marine conservation make her a huge asset to the team.
Vladimer Downer, Community Relations
Mr. Downer is the communications link between Coral Restoration and the residents most affected by our efforts. His practical experience and formed meaningful relationships within the industry and regulatory agencies by working in Panama City, Colon, and the Bocas Del Toro region. He’s learned the laws and become an active participant in helping residents and expats be able to navigate within the parameters of the system.
Mr. Downer has been influential in the establishment and ongoing success of Caribbean Coral Restoration from its very beginning. His ultimate intentions and goals evenly match those of our mission statement. We are very happy and very lucky to have him as a member of the team.
Angie Whittemore Brutto, Website Management
Angie, born and raised in Panama, is an entrepreneur and travel marketing enthusiast. Living in Bocas del Toro since 2005, Angie owns a small bed and breakfast and is a digital marketing freelancer for over ten years. Her love for the ocean has kept her in the Bocas archipelago where you can find her paddling and surfing.
Jessica Perreault, Marine Biologist
Jess holds a degree in marine biology from the University of Rhode Island. Her research has taken her all over the world. Most notably, she spent time studying coral reef disease and immune health as it relates to eco-tourism in the British Virgin Islands.
She is an avid diver, sailor, fisher(wo)man and swimmer. She currently works in an advisory capacity to Caribbean Coral Restoration.
Yana Pikulak, Research
Yana is a Masters student specializing in Environmental Studies at York University in Toronto, Canada. She is focused on anthropogenic impacts on tropical ecosystems, topics covering ecology, biological conservation, human-animal relations, climate change, habitat loss and degradation, protected areas, wildlife tourism, and sustainable development.
Yana conducts research for the project covering coral health, impacts, degradation, restoration, and management, helps to design and construct coral sculptures, and occasionally assists with social media activities.
Ruben Navarro, Legal Counsel
Ruben was the legal representative and manager of the International Blue Lagoon, S.A. company; he was a contractor and consultant to the International World Conservation Union (IUCN) and The National Conservancy for Central America (TNC).
Rubin is enthusiastic about the possibilities of coral restoration nurseries and immediately agreed to become a legal advisor for us. Using his professional skills and experience, he is helping us through the process of securing the administrative approvals to make our project truly effective.
Anne-Michelle Wand, Bookkeeping, Accounting
Anne MichelleWand is the Treasurer of the Panama coral restoration Ayuda a la Tierra SA which is a licensed DBA for CCRC, Inc. practicing in the Bocas del Toro archipelago of Panama. Her experience as a successful businesswoman and entrepreneur along with her enthusiasm for the project and ability to work with complex logistics makes her a perfect fit and necessary part of our fast moving team.
Alexander Jairo Keppel, Water Nursery Maintenance Manager, Diver
Born in the Netherlands, Alex has called Bocas del Toro home for most of his life. A professional diver since the age of 18, Alex is now a Padi Master Scuba Diver Trainer and co-owner of the Bocas Diving Pirates dive center. Alex started helping Doug and CCRC approximately 4 years ago, cleaning and maintaining the coral nurseries. He fell in love with the project and has continued to be a leader for CCRC as a water nursery maintenance manager.
We are delighted to be supported by volunteers of all types – construction help, divers, tending the coral, building a structure, asking for donations… what we do isn’t possible without our volunteers. Our gratitude is immeasurable.