In his position, Geoff Wallat will implement programs for the Florida Sea Grant College Program that promote the sustainable use of natural resources in Florida’s coastal living areas. He will also be responsible for IFAS extension programs in areas such as water use and conservation, 4-H, forestry and wildlife management.
Wallat has more than 22 years of experience in both private and public aquaculture programs, and research and development. He holds a bachelor’s degree in aquaculture and fishery technology from the University of Rhode Island, and a master’s degree in fisheries from the University of Florida. He is currently pursuing a doctorate in aquaculture at UF.
“Geoff brings the skills that will allow Florida Sea Grant and IFAS extension to expand existing programs as well as create new ones that will make lasting contributions to Taylor County residents,” said Martin Main, associate director of education and extension for Florida Sea Grant.
Taylor County, in Florida’s Big Bend, has a very long coastline compared to most other Florida counties, and includes multiple coastal rivers such as the Aucilla, Ecofina, Fenholloway and Steinhatchee. The coastal areas of the Big Bend include vast tracts of seagrass meadows, and shallow inshore waters bordered by a large coastal floodplain with potential for coastal flooding in major storm events.