Jonathan Stern Research Grant

Dr. Jonathan Stern    photo: © Dr. Frances Robertson

Dr. Jonathan Stern

photo: © Dr. Frances Robertson

The San Francisco Bay Chapter of the American Cetacean Society has established an annual grant to continue Dr. Jonathan Stern’s legacy of groundbreaking research focused on minke whales, humpback whales, bottlenose dolphins and harbor porpoises found in the Northeast Pacific Ocean.

Jonathan Stern (1955 - 2017) was a highly esteemed and beloved member of the marine mammal research community. A marine ecologist and whale expert, Jon was co-founder of Golden Gate Cetacean Research, past Conservation Chair for the National Board of Directors for the American Cetacean Society, a Biology professor at San Francisco State University, and a long-standing researcher at the University of Washington’s Friday Harbor Laboratories.

Jon was one the world’s experts regarding the foraging habits and movements of whales.  In his study of minke whales in the Salish Sea, Jon was the first scientist to apply photo-identification techniques to a baleen whale. His work resulted in the longest running longitudinal study of the species. He later created a computer model that simulates whale behavior and ship traffic, with the aim of determining how to decrease the frequency of ship strikes. His 2008 discovery of the return of harbor porpoises to San Francisco Bay inspired him to co-found Golden Gate Cetacean Research.

Jon grew up in San Rafael and obtained a B.A. in biology at Sonoma State University. He earned an M.A. from San Francisco State, and a Ph.D. from Texas A&M University. 

American Cetacean Society San Francisco Chapter is grateful to Dr. Stern for his tremendous contributions to cetacean science.  We look forward to supporting future cetacean research efforts in his honor. 


please Donate today to support cetacean research and the legacy of Jonathan Stern

Rus Hoelzel and Jon Stern 1980    photo: © Laura Norris

Rus Hoelzel and Jon Stern 1980

photo: © Laura Norris

Jon Stern    photo: © Frances Robertson

Jon Stern

photo: © Frances Robertson