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Updated: May 3, 2023

Bigelow Laboratory's new VP of research is literally a deep thinker

Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences, an independent, nonprofit research institute located in East Boothbay, has selected its new vice president for research, who has joined over 30  expeditions and spent more than 600 days at sea. 

Beth Orcutt served as interim vice president over the last nine months. She has over a decade of leadership experience directing teams of scientists and students in exploring the deep sea.

Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences
Beth Orcutt

Orcutt focused her research on the microscopic life on and below the seafloor. As s vice president for research, she will guide Bigelow Laboratory’s research around the world to understand the ocean and develop solutions. She will continue her international leadership to inform science-based decisions on emerging human uses of the sea floor.

In 2012, Orcutt joined Bigelow Laboratory as a senior research scientist. She attended the International Seabed Authority’s council meeting in Jamaica most recently. She was awarded the Asahiko Taira Prize for Scientific Ocean Drilling Research in 2019 from the American Geophysical Union, the largest international scientific society for Earth science. 

"We need excellent science to understand this planet and how our society impacts it, but that alone is not enough," said Orcutt. "Bigelow Laboratory has a long history of turning our discoveries into solutions and into data that equips global leaders to make science-based decisions, and I'm excited to support and strengthen that vital work."

Orcutt received her bachelor's in interdisciplinary studies and a doctorate in marine sciences from the University of Georgia. 

“In addition to being a globally-recognized leader in her field, she is also deeply passionate about both our organization and our mission to study the foundation of global ocean health and unlock its potential,” said Deborah Bronk, president and CEO. “We are thrilled to have her lead our research efforts.”

Bigelow Laboratory scientists use innovative approaches to study the foundation of global ocean health and unlock its potential to improve the future for all life on the planet. 

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