Marine Mammal Expert
A Pacific Northwest native born and raised, Sam grew up exploring the waters of the Salish Sea where she developed a love and appreciation for the marine environment. She pursued this passion at the University of Washington where she graduated with honors from the School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences. During this time, she pursued studies at the University of Washington’s Friday Harbor Labs, the School for Field Studies South Caicos field station, and worked with NOAA’s Hawaiian Monk Seal Team to assess the threat of disease to this endemic and endangered population. Following graduation, Sam embarked on an eight-month solo expedition throughout Southeast Asia, Japan and Central America where she spent as much time on and below the waves as possible.
Sam now works as a marine naturalist and photographer in Washington’s San Juan Islands, educating thousands of visitors each year. Her work as a marine naturalist has taken her to Hawaii for the annual humpback whale migration, and her travels recently brought her to Laguna San Ignacio, Baja for the annual gray whale migration.
Even when not working, you can find Sam by the sea. Whether scuba diving, snorkeling, kayaking, or island hoping, her travels are always ocean oriented.
You can follow her travels on Instagram @smurph.travel.