Alaska SeaLife Center Announces New Science Director
April 22, 2015

Seward, Alaska (April 7, 2015) - The Alaska SeaLife Center (ASLC) is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Markus Horning as Science Director effective July 13, 2015. He will succeed Dr. Tuula Hollmén who has chosen to return to a full time research position at the Center following five years as Science Director. 

Dr. Horning is currently an Associate Professor at Oregon State University’s Marine Mammal Institute. He has conducted research at the Alaska SeaLife Center since its opening, most recently collaborating with Dr. Jo-Ann Mellish on a long-term study into the life history of Steller sea lions that recently theorized on the impact of predation by sleeper sharks. While serving as ASLC’s Science Director, Horning intends to continue his active research on conservation and management of marine species.

“Dr. Markus Horning has a solid track record as a very creative and productive marine scientist, and is praised by colleagues and funders as a collaborative leader who understands the importance of the application of marine mammal research to resource management in Alaska’s oceans. I am ecstatic that he will help guide our research programs to be at the forefront of the field, as well as to be highly relevant to stakeholders,” said Dr. Tara Riemer, ASLC President and CEO. 

Dr. Horning holds a Ph.D. in zoology from the University of Bielefeld and Max Planck Institute for Behavioral Physiology at Seewiesen, Germany. Following postdoctoral research at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography he was a scientist at Texas A&M University for 10 years. His research focuses on integrative, ecosystem-based investigations of the life history, physiological ecology, trophic and population ecology of upper trophic marine vertebrates, and their predators and prey. He has authored nearly 50 peer-reviewed publications and his research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, North Pacific Research Board, Pollock Conservation Cooperative Research Center, North Pacific Fisheries Foundation, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association.

About the ASLC

Opened in 1998, the Alaska SeaLife Center operates as a private, non-profit research institution and public aquarium, with wildlife response and education programs. It generates and shares scientific knowledge to promote understanding and stewardship of Alaska’s marine ecosystems. The ASLC is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, and the Alliance of Marine Mammal Parks and Aquariums. To learn more, visit

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