Captain Lindsey Parker has served UGA as a marine resource specialist, a fisheries extension agent, and captain of the University’s research vessel, the R/V Georgia Bulldog for 35 years. His strong relationships with commercial fisherman and researchers helped to establish UGA Marine Extension and Georgia Sea Grant as an important resource for marine research and education on the coast of Georgia.
Since the start of his career at the Brunswick Station in 1981, Parker has played a key role in advising major research projects aboard the R/V Georgia Bulldog, particularly those involving sea turtle conservation practices and techniques. For 17 years he has worked with scientists at South Carolina Department of Natural Resources to assess and monitor sea turtle abundance. He also played a key role in developing and implementing Turtle Excluder Devices (TED), which are devices that allow sea turtles and other bycatch to escape when caught in a fisherman’s net.
According to Bryan Fluech, associate director of marine extension, some of the first TED designs were inefficient. “Lindsey brought fishermen to the table to help with design and implementation to ensure the new gear met conservation goals and kept fishermen in business,” said Fluech. “This is a huge accomplishment and is why he’s so well respected among the industry.”
Parker’s involvement with TEDs even led to the naming of a nationally‐certified TED, “The Parker,” in his honor. Every legal TED in the United States has been tested in the wild onboard the R/V Georgia Bulldog under Parker’s direction.
Parker’s research accomplishments are equally matched by his notable contributions in extension and outreach. He’s been instrumental in developing connections with commercial fisherman and maintaining those connections by providing routine updates on fisheries, regulations and research. He fosters cooperation between managers and others in the seafood industry by encouraging collaborative, pro‐active approaches to solving issues. His efforts earned him the South Atlantic Sea Grant Extension Program Award for Excellence in 2001 and the David L. Harrington Appreciation Award from the Southeastern Fisheries Association in 2010.
Parker walks with an unwavering respect for the university and the principles of public service. He’s a steady reminder to faculty and staff at Marine Extension and Georgia Sea Grant to stay focused on what truly matters, serving people on the coast and listening to local concerns in order to inform cutting‐edge research.