• Meet the UCI Staff


    Tony MacDonaldTony MacDonald is currently the director of the Urban Coast Institute (UCI) at Monmouth University and was previously the Executive Director of the Coastal States Organization (CSO) from 1998-2005. CSO, based in Washington, DC, represents the interests of the Governors of the United States’ 35 coastal states and territories on coastal and ocean policy matters.

    Prior to joining CSO, Mr. MacDonald was the special counsel and director of Environmental Affairs at the American Association of Port Authorities, where he represented the International Association of Ports and Harbors (IAPH) at the International Maritime Organization on negotiations on the London Convention. Tony has also practiced law with a private firm in Washington, DC working on environmental and legislative issues, and served as the Washington, DC environmental legislative representative for the Mayor of the City of New York.


    Jim NickelsJim Nickels is the Marine Scientist for the Urban Coast Institute. Jim obtained his M.S. in Environmental Studies from Montclair State University and has 25 years of academic and professional experience in designing, implementing, and directing a variety of marine and inland water field research and sampling programs. He has managed and operated research vessels, scientific crews, and associated equipment. His expertise includes survey work in fisheries, plankton, benthic organisms, sediment, water quality, mitigation, and geophysics. He has an extensive background in Geographic Information Systems (GIS), use and integration of Global Positioning System (GPS), and real-time mapping and data logging. He has held the position of Vice President at Aqua Survey Inc., and as Director of Marine Operations at the New Jersey Marine Sciences Consortium.


    Ryan OrgeraRyan Orgera has a PhD in Environmental Geography from Louisiana State University in 2012, and received his BA and MA in Romance Languages from University of South Florida. While at LSU, Ryan served as Assistant Project Manager for Research at the Disaster Science & Management Center. Ryan was awarded a prestigious Sea Grant Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship and worked for the past year at the office of U.S. Senator Bill Nelson of Florida.

     Ryan will help translate and apply the best available science and tools to assist communities recover from Superstorm Sandy and take actions to become more resilient to future coastal hazards, the impacts of sea level rise and changing climate. Ryan will work to enhance the capacity of the UCI and NJSGC’s extension program by improving public understanding of community hazard mitigation and making climate resilience science, data products, information, and decision support tools more accessible.
      

    Lorraine Jordan is currently the Administrative Assistant for the Urban Coast Institute (UCI) at Monmouth University in West Long Branch, New Jersey, USA. Ms. Jordan joined the UCI in 2006 after supporting the Dean’s office in the School of Science. Ms. Jordan’s early professional career in private industry included roles in human resources, marketing, civil engineering and R&D support. Ms. Jordan has acquired more than fifteen years of experience in educational administrative support in both public and private education, and is candidate for her Master’s in Corporate and Public Communication at Monmouth University, West Long Branch, New Jersey.

    Urban Coast Institute Mission Statement:

    Supporting Stewardship of Coastal Ecosystems


    Mission: To serve Monmouth University and the public interest as a forum for research, education, and collaboration in the development and implementation of science-based policies and programs that support stewardship of healthy, productive, and resilient coastal ecosystems and communities.

     

    • The Urban Coast Institute (UCI) was established in September 2005 as one of Monmouth University's "Centers of Distinction."
    • The UCI builds on the University's program in Marine and Environmental Biology and inter-departmental strengths in marine biology, environmental science, business, economics and real estate, public policy, and the arts and social sciences.
    • The UCI maintains a principal focus on the interactions between humans and the coastal and ocean environment, and sustainable coastal development along New Jersey's coasts and watersheds. Monmouth County and the New Jersey-New York region is an ideal "laboratory" for study of these issues.
    • The UCI has a unique focus on how good science can inform public policy and the "human dimensions" of coastal ecosystem-based management, including the impacts of human use and development on coasts.
    • The UCI seeks to foster collaboration among citizens, watershed and community organizations, governmental agencies, business, the scientific community, and other parties interested in coastal and watershed management, conservation, and restoration.