Board of Directors

Todd C. Guerdat, Ph.D.
President

Dr. Todd Guerdat is a professor of Agricultural Engineering at the University of New Hampshire with appointments in both the Biological Sciences and Civil and Environmental Engineering departments. Dr. Guerdat earned his PhD in Biological and Agricultural Engineering from North Carolina State University researching water and wastewater treatment in recirculating aquaculture systems at the pilot and large scales. Todd has served as the Director of Research and Development for Aquaculture Systems Technologies in New Orleans, LA and as the Director of Nutrient Management Systems at Cambrian Innovation. His agricultural engineering research program at UNH is centered on scalable nutrient capture and reuse systems, protected agricultural systems, and alternative agricultural energy systems which will provide opportunities for students and farmers alike to apply their knowledge in a practical manner. He is currently working toward optimizing the integration of recirculating aquaculture systems with plant production for improved nutrient utilization while preserving economic sustainability.

Todd Guerdat, Ph. D.

KC Hosler, P.Eng
First Vice President

KC is Business Unit Manager for the PR Aqua division of Pentair Aquatic Ecosystems.  He has more than 17 years’ experience in the field of aquaculture systems engineering and construction.  He has been project manager and/or lead consultant on an extensive list of projects in aquatic laboratory, fisheries enhancement, and commercial aquaculture applications.  KC specializes in aquaculture facility bio-programming, planning and concept design with special emphasis on the application of advanced water reuse and recirculation technologies.  KC frequently speaks or participates in technical discussion panels at aquaculture conferences and courses, providing him the opportunity to educate regarding modern aquaculture techniques and to share his extensive project experience. KC is a Professional Engineers in British Columbia, Canada and has previously served on the board of the Aquaculture Engineering Society.

Kc Hosler P>Eng

Tim Pfeiffer, Ph.D.
Secretary/Treasurer

Dr. Pfeiffer obtained his doctorate degree from Louisiana State University in Engineering Science from the Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering. Dr. Pfeiffer worked for the USDA as an Agricultural Engineer specializing in aquaculture engineering for over 13 years with a majority of his time spent at the Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute in Fort Pierce, FL. While with USDA he specialized in design and research of recirculating aquaculture systems, effluent management, and energy and water conservation for RAS designs. Project funding for the USDA research was terminated in 2011 and Dr. Pfeiffer then worked with the Foreign Agricultural Service branch of USDA as an Agricultural Advisor in Afghanistan. He was stationed in Afghanistan for over a year and his main focus was water resource development and conservation. Upon his return in 2013 he began working for Aquaculture System Technology. He is the Research Director for the Engineering department at AST and also assists in system design for the initial phases of a project. Dr. Pfeiffer has been a long-time member of AES (18 yrs) and has served as its Secretary/Treasurer from 2006 until 2012. He currently serves on the editorial board of the Aquaculture Engineering journal.

David Kuhn, Ph.D.
Past President

Dr. David D. Kuhn, Assistant Professor, joined the Department of Food Science and Technology faculty at Virginia Tech after receiving his doctorate, Ph.D., in Civil and Environmental Engineering at Virginia Tech in 2008. He also holds a B.S. degree in Mathematics (Saint Lawrence University), B.S. degree in Civil Engineering (Clarkson University), and a M.S. in Civil and Environmental Engineering (Clarkson University). In his short time as a faculty member he has helped bring in extramural funds to the University to work on various aquaculture projects that serve the needs of the aquaculture industry. To date, he has over 30 publications (18 peer-reviewed scientific manuscripts in press/published and 2 book chapters) and has presented more than 40 papers at various national/international meetings. His research interests include animal husbandry, alternative ingredients for aquaculture feeds, new species culture in recirculating aquaculture systems, seafood quality, systems engineering, toxicology, and waste handling/reuse. Overall, he enjoys working with industry to help them become more economically and environmentally sustainable.

David Kuhn, PHD

German Merino, Ph.D.
Director (Chile)

He has a professional title as Aquacultural Engineer from Universidad Catolica del Norte (1994, Chile) and a PhD in Biological and Agricultural Engineering from University of California Davis (2004, USA). Dr Merino works as a professor of the Aquacultural Department at the Universidad Catolica del Norte, Chile. Dr Merino became involved in aquacultural activities back in 1992, accumulating experience in aquaculture facility operations, design and construction management with an emphasis on marine animals. Dr. Merino has worked with shellfish, flatfish, finfish, seaweeds, algae, rotifers under intensive culture systems, from which 15 papers have been published during the last 5 years. His recent projects include direction and participation as an aquaculture expert in the design of recirculation seawater aquaculture systems for mollusks, including abalone and scallops, and marine finfish. He has been an AES member since 1996, and during that time has been a session chair and workshop speaker at several Aquaculture Conferences – giving more than 40 presentations in the last 5 years. Dr Merino served the Aquacultural Engineering Society as BOD member for first time in 1998 and again in 2004; he was as Officer from 2008 and 2011, serving as AES President during 2010. Recently, he took responsibilities as Chairman for the AES Award Committee and was elected to serve AES again as a BOD member.

David Brune, Ph.D., P.E.
Director (USA)

David Brune received his B.S. and M.S. in Agricultural Engineering and Ph.D. in Sanitary Engineering from the University of Missouri-Columbia. A major focus of his research has been directed at quantifying, modeling, and optimizing the role of photosynthesis in existing and emerging aquacultural practices. His R&D activities at Clemson University in South Carolina resulted in the U.S. patented, “Partitioned Aquaculture System” and “Controlled Eutrophication Process.” Currently, at the University of Missouri, he leads research and extension efforts targeting deployment of integrated aquaculture/algal culture systems supporting co-production of bioenergy with environmental protection and remediation. He is a founding member and past president of the Aquacultural Engineering Society.

Richard D. Jones
Director (USA)

Richard (Rick) D. Jones has been employed as a Field Service Engineer for Pentair Aquatic Eco-System (PAES) since 2010. He received a B.S. in Aquaculture and Fisheries Science from the University of Rhode Island in 2001 and a M.S. in Biological and Agricultural Engineering from North Carolina State University (NCSU) in 2010. The focus of his graduate work was on the remediation of off-flavor compounds (geosmin and 2-methylisoborneol) and dissolved organic compounds utilizing up-flow particulate filtration, UV sterilization, ozonation and the Advanced Oxidation Process (AOP). This research was conducted at the LaPaz commercial sturgeon facility located in western North Carolina. Prior to graduate school, Rick managed the NCSU Fish Barn a large scale demonstration and research aquaculture facility. While there he participated in several waste management research projects including a geotextile bag solid waste capture study. During his time at PAES Rick has designed, installed and managed several aquaculture, aquaponics, research and seafood holding projects in Canada, Russia, India, and throughout the USA. He’s been a member of the Aquaculture Engineering Society since 2008.

Alexander Brinker, Ph.D.
Director (Germany)

Born in Vechta/Germany on January 22 1973. 1993 to 1995 studies of biology at the Philipps-Universität Marburg (Vordiplom degree). 1996 to 2000 studies of biology at the Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg (Diploma degree; Major: Limnology; Minor: Animal physiology, plant physiology, biometry). 2000 to 2003 working as research associate at the Fisheries Research Station of Baden-Württemberg (awarded PhD for Rerum Naturum for studies on suspended solids in flow-through fish farming). From 2004 employed as researcher (expert fields: salmonid nutrition, fish parasites, husbandry conditions, mathematical modeling) at the Fisheries Research Station of Baden-Württemberg. Additionally, since 2007 working as lecturer (applied statistics, parasitology and fish biology) at the University of Konstanz. From 2012 ongoing Head of the Fisheries Research Station.

John Davidson
Director (USA)

John Davidson is as a Senior Research Associate at the Conservation Fund’s Freshwater Institute in West Virginia, where he has worked for 15 years. He earned a M.S. in Wildlife and Fisheries Resources from West Virginia University and a B.S. in Biology from Shepherd College. He has conducted a wide range of aquaculture research projects encompassing topics such as: evaluation of RAS unit process efficiencies, assessment of the effects of various water quality parameters on salmonid performance within RAS; and evaluation of alternative protein diets on water quality and fish performance within RAS. John manages and operates recirculating aquaculture systems and provides practical consulting support for the Engineering Services team at the Conservation Fund's Freshwater Institute. John is the author of 16 peer-reviewed articles, many of which have appeared in Aquacultural Engineering journals.

Andrew Ray, Ph.D
Director (USA)

Dr. Andrew Ray is an Assistant Professor of Aquaculture Production in the Division of Aquaculture at Kentucky State University.  He holds a Ph.D. from the University of Southern Mississippi, a M.S. degree from the University of Charleston, South Carolina, and a B.S. degree from the University of Central Missouri.  His research has focused on the development of sustainable aquaculture systems and practices.  Much of his work has dealt with biofloc-based aquaculture in which a dense microbial community in the water column cycles waste products and provides supplemental nutrition to animals.  He has examined the effects of particulate organic loading, microbial ecology and management, water quality, nutrient cycling, stable isotope dynamics, artificial seawater development, waste remediation techniques, and the use of fish-free diets to culture marine animals.  His research is intended to improve systems, techniques, and technologies that enable the efficient inland production of high-quality aquatic animals.  Andrew has been a member of the AES since 2010 and currently serves as the webpage editor for the Biofloc section of the AES website.  He has chaired or co-chaired four sessions at aquaculture conferences, and won several awards including the Distinguished Early Career in US Aquaculture Award from the US Aquaculture Society. 

Andrew Ray, Ph.D

Astrid Buran Holan, Ph.D.
Director (Norway)

Dr. Astrid Buran Holan is a research scientist in the field of controlled environment aquaculture in Nofima, Norway. Her focus is on the technological aspects of this field, and she will contribute to the further development of the Centre for Recirculation in Aquaculture (NCRA) at Sunndalsøra.

She completed her doctoral degree at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), affiliated with NTNU Sealab and the Department of Hydraulic and Environmental Engineering. She was later employed there as a researcher. Her research in Nofima and NCRA focus on developing and integrating new or already existing water treatment technology in recirculating and semi-closed aquaculture systems, with a simultaneous focus on the needs and requirements of the fish in such systems, as well as the environmental aspect. Dr. Holan is formally affiliated with the Department of Production Biology in Nofima.

Astrid Buran Holan, Ph.D.

Karin Isabel Suhr, Ph.D
Director (Denmark)

Currently working at the National Institute of Aquatic Resources at the Technical University of Denmark, Section for Aquaculture, in Hirtshals Denmark. She holds a master’s degree in food science from the Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University of Denmark and a Ph.D. degree in biotechnology/mycology from the Technical University of Denmark in Lyngby.

Research area is effluent waste treatment from recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS), microbial N-transformation processes (nitrification, denitrification) and anaerobic digestion of solid waste.

Karin Isabel Suhr, Ph.D