GoMRI Mourns the Passing of Dr. Matthew Howard

It is with deep sadness that we share the news that Dr. Matthew Howard passed away unexpectedly on February 8, 2018. His work related to the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI) was with data management at the program level (the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative Information and Data Cooperative or GRIIDC) and with the Gulf of Mexico Integrated Spill Response or GISR consortium. “I starting working with Matt in 2010 following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill and during the early days of GoMRI, recalled Dr. James Gibeaut, GRIIDC Director at the Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies. “Matt was a guiding hand in establishing the data management program for GoMRI. Matt did a lot of important things for science in the Gulf, and he went about it in such an affable way. I’m going to miss Matt professionally, like so many will, but I will miss his camaraderie and kindness, always.” Howard was a key collaborator and a champion of GRIIDC. He acted as a lead on GRIIDC work groups and most recently provided his expertise in oceanographic data through writing guidance documents, reviewing manuscripts, and assessing dataset packages.  Howard also served as the Data Management and Communications Coordinator for the Gulf of Mexico Coastal Ocean Observing System or GCOOS and was a research scientist in the Department of Oceanography in Texas A&M University’s College of Geosciences. The GRIDC team noted that Howard was always quick to help with whatever was needed, providing sound input and advice. His enthusiasm, kindness, and sense of humor at work lead to many friendships in the oceanographic and data communities. The GoMRI science community extends sincere sympathy to Dr. Howard’s family, friends, and colleagues. You can offer condolences or share memories of Matthew Howard at http://matthew-howard.forevermissed.com/ ************ The Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative or GoMRI is a 10-year independent research program established to study the effect, and the potential associated impact, of hydrocarbon releases on the environment and public health, as well as to develop improved spill mitigation, oil detection, characterization and remediation technologies.  An independent and academic 20-member Research Board makes the funding and research direction decisions to ensure the intellectual quality, effectiveness and academic independence of the GoMRI research.  All research data, findings and publications will be made publicly available.  The program was established through a $500 million financial commitment from BP.  For more information, visit http://gulfresearchinitiative.org/.

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