Author: ECWG_Admin

2024 ECWG Exploration and Field Research Grant Recipients

2024 ECWG Exploration and Field Research Grant Recipients

Mary Efird (Ph.D.), University of Maryland College Park, Anthropology, Isotopic Analysis of Icelandic Cod Atlases: Tracing Trophic Changes Over a Millennium, Iceland. 

As climate change intensifies and human exploitation of fish stocks escalates, there is an urgent need to monitor the state of global fisheries. Both climate change and human activities can disrupt marine ecosystems by altering trophic webs, intricate networks of predation and energy transfer among organisms. Trophic web alterations can lead to biodiversity loss and ecosystem instability. Despite this, deep-time trophic changes in Iceland’s Atlantic cod population remain poorly understood. This dissertation seeks to address this research gap by employing zooarchaeological methods. However, to contextualize archaeological findings, understanding the trophic life histories of modern Atlantic cod is crucial. Samples of Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) atlas vertebrae will be collected from four fish processing plants across Iceland. These modern specimens will serve as analogs for previously collected archaeological vertebrae, forming the basis for carbon and nitrogen stable isotope analysis. Through comparing stable isotope signatures of modern and archaeological vertebrae spanning Iceland’s history, this study aims to elucidate historical shifts in the marine trophic webs of Iceland. The deep-time insights provided by this research can mitigate the common fisheries issue of shifting baseline syndrome and inform more effective fisheries management strategies for Iceland’s Atlantic cod fishery, which holds considerable socioeconomic and ecological significance.


Abdulwahab Omokolade Omigbule (Ph.D.), University of Virginia, Anthropology, The Bonny Island – Old Calabar Archaeological Project, Nigeria. 

The transatlantic economy has been extensively researched since the mid-20th century, with archaeologists contributing significantly on both sides of the Atlantic basin. While West African archaeologists have extensively explored the Senegambian region and the Bight of Benin, the Bight of Bonny has received little attention despite its centrality to transatlantic history. Old Calabar and Bonny Island served as crucial points in the transatlantic slave trade, facilitating complex African-European interactions and accounting for a substantial portion of enslaved captives transported through the region. Their geographical proximity to the Atlantic, access to trading posts via the Niger Delta, and unique political-economic structures positioned these ports strategically within the regional economy. This doctoral research focuses on daily life and material histories during the transatlantic and post-abolition periods in the Niger Delta area of the Bight of Bonny, Nigeria. By examining the lives of African traders and local inhabitants at Bonny Island and Old Calabar, this study aims to elucidate the global experiences and contributions of West Africans from the 17th to 19th centuries CE. Previous historical archaeological endeavors in West Africa have primarily emphasized the European perspective, making this interdisciplinary project vital in highlighting the role and agency of African elites and non-elites in shaping the modern world, particularly in Nigeria.


Robert Salerno (M.S.), University of Maryland College Park, Entomology, Soil Arthropod Diversity and Ecosystem Services in Response to Ecological Intensification of Agricultural Cropping Systems, Clarksville, Maryland. 

Modern agricultural practices, such as intensive soil tillage, crop monocultures, and overfertilization pose sustainability challenges in forage and livestock farming, impacting soil quality and ecosystem stability. Throughout the world, studies have revealed that agricultural intensification has imposed negative consequences on aboveground arthropods, prompting interest in ecologically intensified forage systems for agricultural sustainability. Belowground, soil arthropods provide many essential ecosystem services on the farm, including decomposition, biological control, and bioturbation however, these organisms are usually overlooked. Understanding their response to ecological intensification is vital for sustainable agriculture. Therefore, this project aims to assess how different land use types in forage cropping systems influence soil arthropod biodiversity, their ecosystem services, and soil quality. Sampling across various treatments using subterranean pitfall traps will provide insights into soil arthropod biodiversity and its connection to soil properties and land use type. This research aligns with broader efforts aiming to transform the agricultural landscape dominated by conventional monocultures into a landscape possessing ecologically intensified perennial forage systems. By bridging knowledge gaps, this project seeks to promote ecologically intensified forage systems, benefiting farmers and fostering agricultural resilience while also exploring soil arthropod biodiversity, a group of organisms vital to agriculture but usually overlooked.


Ronita Sequeira (M.S.), University of Maryland Baltimore County-IMET, Marine, Estuarine and Environmental Sciences, Measuring the Abundance, Diet and Condition of Piscifauna Near Restoration Projects in an Urban Estuary, Baltimore, Maryland. 

The proposed study explores the impact of shoreline and floating wetland resiliency projects on fish ecology in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor and Middle Branch areas. Although wetlands are known to have many ecological benefits, it is relatively unknown how beneficial they are in urban estuaries. This study aims to address this knowledge gap by quantifying fish abundance and conditions adjacent to restoration efforts and evaluating habitat restoration’s influence on juvenile fish diversity. Focusing on mummichogs and silversides, the research will assess abundance, condition, and potential diet variations near restoration sites compared to reference areas, including stands of Phragmites australis. By conducting statistical analyses and collecting biological specimens, the study will provide insights into the interaction between habitat restoration projects and fish communities in urban estuarine environments. Anticipated results of this exploration include identifying correlations between fish abundance, condition, and restoration efforts, crucial for guiding future restoration initiatives and supporting sustainable fish populations. Moreover, the study will establish a baseline for future research on fish diet, biodiversity, and mercury content, while also fostering outreach activities to engage youth and collaborate with relevant stakeholders and organizations invested in estuarine conservation and restoration.


Matthew Stefanak (Ph.D.), University of Maryland-UMCES, Marine, Estuarine and Environmental Sciences, Exploring the Offshore Estuary: Applying Stable Isotopes to Understand Fish Trophic Dynamics in the Chesapeake Bay Plume, Chesapeake Bay and Solomons, Maryland. 

The Chesapeake Bay offshore estuary is an important transitional zone that transports large amounts of nutrients and organic matter from the estuary onto the continental shelf. These “plume” zones have been shown to be areas of enhanced biological activity, yet the magnitude and mechanisms by which the Bay plume influences fishery production in the adjacent inner continental shelf ecosystem is poorly understood. In this project, my objectives are to use measurements of carbon and nitrogen stable isotope composition of basal resources, benthic invertebrates, and several juvenile fish species to 1) characterize the primary sources of production in the plume system (i.e., marine, autochthonous, and (or) estuarine), and 2) estimate the relative contribution of these various energy sources to higher trophic level productivity. Sampling will occur during June 2024 to build on previous collections from April/September 2023 at multiple stations across an inshore-offshore gradient within the plume using a variety of gears. All prepared samples will be analyzed for δ13C and δ15N signatures using a continuous flow isotope ratio mass spectrometer coupled with an elemental analyzer. Findings from this study will elucidate the spatiotemporal role of the Chesapeake Bay plume as a structuring agent of the nearshore food web and its higher trophic level dynamics.

Professor Carrie Dolan, Explorers Club 50 Class of 2023

Professor Carrie Dolan, Explorers Club 50 Class of 2023


Congratulations to one of our Explorers Club Washington Groups’ very own, Professor Carrie Dolan, for being selected to the 2023 Class of the prestigious Explorers Club 50!

As a spatial epidemiologist at William & Mary, Assistant Professor Carrie Dolan’s research and teaching expertise in global health are tightly integrated through her work as the Director of Ignite, a multidisciplinary research lab based in William & Mary’s Global Research Institute and in partnership with the Department Kinesiology. Her research is grounded in a well-established framework for evidence-based global health, focusing on the effective, efficient, and equitable distribution of global health resources, especially among women and children. (1)

Carrie has logged enough time investigating health care issues in the world’s remote locations from Jamaica to Kenya to be named a Fellow of the Explorers Club. Her on-site work is vital to understanding the effectiveness of individual public health initiatives and pointing out where things aren’t working. Carrie’s work contributes value in three arenas that don’t always overlap: practitioners in the area of study, governmental and funding agencies, and academia. Her research includes a hefty data science component and she is a member of the AidData Research Consortium and the Center for Geospatial Analysis Steering Committee at William & Mary. (1)

For more information on Professor Dolan or the EC50, please follow the links below.

1. Carrie Dolan, Assistant Professor, College of William & Mary

The Explorers Club 50

2022 Exploration and Field Research Grant Recipients

2022 Exploration and Field Research Grant Recipients

Melissa Collier, (Ph.D.), Georgetown University, Biology, “The impact of social behavior on disease dynamics in the bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) of the Chesapeake Bay”, Virginia, District of Columbia.

Animal social behavior affects infectious disease dynamics in wildlife populations which can have detrimental ecosystem effects, such as declining wildlife populations and even extinctions. With the recent increase in marine related disease reports, there is a need for evaluating the impact of behavior on infectious disease spread in marine species. However, social behavior is not homogenous across demographic groups; there is variation in disease spreading behaviors across age and sex classes that can affect which individuals are most at risk for contracting disease in certain populations. This project will evaluate how differences in social behavior among demographic groups affect the vulnerability of individual bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) to infectious disease by collecting behavioral data on the dolphins of the Chesapeake Bay. This work will help to explain how unique dolphin behavior contributed to a recent epizootic that killed more than 1,600 bottlenose dolphins, depleting mid-Atlantic coastal populations of bottlenose dolphins. The vulnerability of a marine sentinel species to disease will be assessed and a forecast the demographics most at risk for future outbreaks will be made. This is essential for modeling the population dynamics of this vulnerable species.

Claudia Escue, (Ph.D.), The College of William and Mary, Anthropology, “Sustainable and Resilient Taro Farming in Rurutu, French Polynesia: A Multi-methodological Approach”, French Polynesia.

This project investigates the extent to which environmental factors and social factors resulted in the adoption or continued use of resilient farming methods in marginal communities. Research will be conducted on Rurutu (Austral Islands, French Polynesia), one of the last remaining Polynesian islands where traditional taro farming is practiced. Rurutu is an ideal location for research on traditional farming as the island’s terraces have likely been continuously cultivated for a 1,000-year sequence. This research consists of a multiphase project integrating geospatial analysis of Rurutu’s taro terraces with soil nutrient profiles and data on contemporary farming methods. Preliminary GIS data suggests that intra-island differences in productive capacity and population distribution are linked to environmental conditions. Ethnoarchaeological research will expand on such geospatial analysis by exploring the maintenance of traditional farming practices, when, where, and why land tenure and water rights issues arise, and how sustainable practices are maintained during shifts from subsistence to commercial farming. Finally, soil nutrient profiles of traditionally and commercially farmed plots will be examined to explore how farmers adapt to climate fluctuations, resource pressures, and population shifts and how such practices can inform contemporary decisions regarding sustainable, resilient agriculture and global efforts towards food sovereignty.

Jennifer Kane, (Ph.D.), West Virginia University, Plant and Soil Science, “Exploring the ground above the ground: canopy soil biodiversity and nutrient cycling in an old-growth forests of the Pacific Northwest”, Washington.

Old-growth forests, which contain the world’s largest and oldest trees, are experiencing global decline. As trees are physically removed (e.g., during logging) or experience increased mortality rates (e.g., due to environmental stress), other plants and animals lose a critical source of shelter and food. Hence, the decline of these trees likely has cascading impacts on ecosystem-wide biodiversity. Much of this endangered biodiversity dwells in the canopy of these forests, as branches have become home to a diverse assemblage of plants, animals, and microbes. Abundant life in the canopy has resulted in the accumulation of soil as plant and animal biomass senesces and decomposes. These soils serve as an important source of nutrients for trees and epiphytes; yet little is known about nutrient cycling in these suspended canopy soils. One persisting knowledge gap is how soil organisms (invertebrates, bacteria, fungi) and their interactions influence these nutrient cycles. This project will be conducted in the suspended canopy soils in Olympic National Park with a focus on the structure, function, and interactions of soil organisms. These measurements will further the understanding of how the decline of old growth forests will impact biodiversity and nutrient cycling.

Diogo Viegas de Oliveira, (Ph.D.), The College of William and Mary, Anthropology, “Mozambique Island   in the Iron Age”, Mozambique.

This project brings together multiple lines of data in order to holistically approach archaeology and history in this region of the world. Although part of the Swahili coast, Northern Mozambique has received far less scholarly attention compared to other East African countries. Research will address these gaps by engaging in an interdisciplinary approach to archaeology in Northern Mozambique. This will include employing various methodologies across various disciplines, including archaeology, history, and anthropology. Archaeological and historical research, especially in northern Mozambique and southern Tanzania, is beginning to demonstrate the diversity of lifeways between Swahili coast sites. This project hopes to build on this work and create a cohesive chronology that addresses important cultural differences and transformations between the Southern and Northern sections of East Africa in the later Iron Age and Early Colonial era. The plan is to work with local scholars and archaeologists based at Mozambican universities and institutions to create a new registry of cultural heritage that is representative of Northern Mozambique’s long, unique history from the Later Stone Age to the Colonial Era. Additionally, by finding and mapping these sites around Mozambique Island, one can better assess cultural preservation strategies in Northern Mozambique as climate change will continue to intensify weather patterns and leave cultural heritage at higher levels of risk.

Elad Shdaimah, (M.S.), University of Maryland, Environmental Science and Technology, “Evaluating the impact of invasive vines on nutrient cycling in forest patches in Baltimore, MD”, Maryland.

Urban forests provide important environmental benefits and improve the well-being of city residents. However, invasive species may significantly alter urban forests’ structure and ability to provide these benefits. This study will explore how invasive vines impact the ability of urban forests in Baltimore, MD to cycle and retain carbon and nitrogen. Generally, invasive vines are understood to reduce native plant cover and diversity, altering nutrient cycling and other ecosystem services. Nutrient cycling is a valuable service provided by forests, but the influence of invasive vines on it is variable and poorly understood. Studying invasive vines on the species and local level is necessary for proper management. Field observations and soil samples will be used to test how degree of invasion impacts carbon and nitrogen cycling in forest patches along cover gradients of two invasive vines Hedera helix (English Ivy) and Ampelopsis glandules var. brevipedunculata (Porcelain Berry), two dominant invasive plants in Baltimore. Methods will include soil characterizations (i.e., temperature, pH), soil nutrient analyses (i.e., mineralization, respiration), and litter cover analyses (i.e., depth). The results will increase understanding of urban forest ecology and inform management of Baltimore’s forest patches by highlighting the impacts of invasive vine cover on ecosystem processes.

2021 Exploration and Field Research Grant Recipients

2021 Exploration and Field Research Grant Recipients

Tomos Llywelyn Evans, (Ph.D.), The College of William and Mary, Anthropology, “Uncovering an earthen giant: Sungbo’s Eredo and the socio-political dynamics of Ijebu”, Nigeria
The proposed project will consist of a three-month archaeological field season aimed at developing scientific knowledge of what is thought to be Africa’s largest single monument: the massive, but little understood, 100-mile-long early earthwork system of Sungbo’s Eredo that extends through the forests of southern Nigeria. Fieldwork will be undertaken in order to obtain a variety of scientific data (chronological, material cultural, and stratigraphic) that will help answer key questions about the historical socio-political significance of this massive but still enigmatic monument. These pertain to the chronology of the earthwork’s construction and use, the organization of the earthwork’s construction, and the functions and meanings of the earthwork to the local Ijebu people who generated it and lived in its vicinity. These considerations will offer insights into larger debates about the nature of power and the state in the social sciences, and the ways in which socio-political institutions may generate monumental architecture and vice versa. The project also seeks to contribute to building awareness of this incredible monument, with the hope that this will support ongoing conservation efforts and stimulate sustainable forms of tourism that will generate revenue for local communities.

Edward Andrew Hobbs, Jr., (Ph.D.), University Maryland-UMCES, Chesapeake Biological Laboratory, “Ecological and environmental impacts of nutrient loading and sea level rise on methane in a Chesapeake Bay tributary”, Maryland
Methane is a potent greenhouse gas (~25 times greater than carbon dioxide) that is naturally produced in sediments of coastal ecosystems. When methane production exceeds that of consumption, it can build up and be released to the atmosphere, contributing to global warming. Natural aquatic systems are estimated to account for as much as 7-30% of global methane emissions, and can be impacted by anthropogenic nutrient inputs and sea level rise. Where nutrient inputs are large and lead to seasonal oxygen depletion, such as in Chesapeake Bay, there is an even greater chance for methane to enter the atmosphere. One of the main sinks for methane is anaerobic methane oxidation (AMO), but it is unknown how nutrient inputs and sea level rise affect AMO and overall methane consumption in coastal ecosystems. Quantifying the amount of methane consumed by AMO is essential for estimating methane emissions to the atmosphere. The goal of this research is to directly measure and derive rates of AMO within a representative Chesapeake Bay tributary impacted by nutrient loads and sea level rise. The information gained from this project will significantly broaden our understanding of the degree to which these factors affect methane emissions from coastal ecosystems.

Calvin So, (Ph.D.), University of Maryland, Biology, “A search for fossil caecilians in the Newark Supergroup”, New Jersey, North Carolina, Virginia
Caecilians are a group of elongate, limbless, tropical, and burrowing amphibians with enigmatic evolutionary origins, and one of three living groups of amphibians next to frogs and salamanders. Currently, the morphological evolution of the caecilian body plan is obscured by a paucity of fossil caecilians, resulting in a poor understanding of how caecilians evolved a reinforced skull and an elongated body. With the available record, key morphological and evolutionary events can be inferred to occur in the temporal gap between the evolution of Late Triassic caecilian Chinlestegophis and Early Jurassic caecilian Eocaecilia. To better understand the morphological evolution of caecilians, fossils must be found to fill in the anatomical gap. The Late Triassic outcrops of the Newark Supergroup fulfill the conditions where fossil caecilians are expected; they are within the temporal gap, formerly tropical, and have previously yielded fossils of amphibian relatives. Through phylogenetic analyses, a better understanding of the relationships of caecilians and their extinct relatives can be developed. Prospecting the Newark Supergroup is a well-supported investigation for potential fossil caecilians

Nicole Trenholm, (Ph.D.), University Maryland-UMCES, Horn Point Laboratory, “Field and Satellite Observations of Deglaciated Coastline Water Quality”, Greenland
Increasing glacial meltwater contributions to the Arctic Ocean call for the development of
long-term monitoring approaches of coastal meltwater plumes. Current satellites are limited in the detection of seasonal glacial meltwater conditions. Greenland’s coastline bears nutrient-rich sediment-laden streams that discharge freshwater into the sea. This discharge influences coastal primary productivity, leading to algal blooms and carbon sequestration. The current understanding of the delivery and composition of meltwater to fjord ecosystems is limited by a lack of field studies connecting the ground biogeochemical processes to satellite data. This project will address this gap in knowledge through the use of specialized field sampling methods. This project will advance the understanding of how Greenland’s ongoing deglaciation controls the water quality of the coastal marine ecosystem. The investigation will focus on the nutrient export flux at the land-sea interface of a deglaciated landscape at Sermilik Station on the east coast of Greenland. With Mittivakkat Glacier overhead, the coastal water quality conditions influenced by land-retreated glacier meltwater discharge will be defined. These observations will aid as the foundation for a widespread deglaciated coastline water quality survey next summer along Greenland’s largest turbid meltwater plume.

Anna Windle, (Ph.D.), University Maryland-UMCES, Horn Point Laboratory, “Underwater Structure from Motion photogrammetry: A remote, rapid, and nondestructive method to monitor restored oyster reefs”, Maryland
Eastern oysters, native to Chesapeake Bay, provide critical ecosystem services to the Bay ecosystem. Due to historic over-harvesting, disease, and habitat loss, populations have drastically declined. Recognizing the importance of restoring native populations, the 2014 Chesapeake Bay Watershed Agreement included a goal to sustain shellfish populations by restoring oyster habitat in ten Chesapeake Bay tributaries by 2025. Today, an estimated 788 acres of oyster reef habitat have been restored in the five Maryland tributaries. Reefs are assessed every three and six years following restoration. These efforts use labor intensive methods that are limited by weather and water conditions, are destructive to the reef, and are expensive. Remote, rapid, and nondestructive methodologies to assess oyster reef metrics have significant potential to increase the efficiency of oyster restoration monitoring. This project aims to explore the emerging technology of underwater Structure from Motion (SfM) photogrammetry to assess the potential of large-scale oyster reef monitoring. Underwater imagery will be collected, processed through a color reconstruction algorithm to remove the effect of turbid water, and applied in SfM software to create high resolution 3D models. This proof-of-concept research has the potential to not only enhance oyster reef monitoring techniques, but also transform underwater datasets in Chesapeake Bay.

Julius (“Jay”) Kaplan MN’01
1934 -2021

Julius (“Jay”) Kaplan MN’01
1934 -2021

Julius (“Jay”) Kaplan died unexpectedly on September 1, 2021. He was born on August 3, 1934 in Washington, DC, and lived most of his life in the District. He is survived by his wife of 57 years, Ann Lanyon Kaplan, his two children, Samantha Kaplan (Dirk Mason) of Madison, WI and Lael Kaplan (Cheryl Kaplan) of Ashburn, VA, four grandchildren, and his sister, Jean Sulkes, of Chicago, IL. He was preceded in death by his brother, William Kaplan.

Jay was the son of immigrant parents who owned a delicatessen in the Eckington neighborhood of NW Washington. Jay left his tight-knit Jewish community to pursue a bachelor’s degree in Intellectual History with an undergraduate thesis on 20th century American art. While art and philosophy were his early passions, family pressure directed him towards law school. The intellectual challenge of law appealed to Jay and ultimately led him around the globe.

Jay received a BA (1956) from Wesleyan University in Connecticut, a JD (1961) from the University of Chicago Law School where he edited the law review, and an MCL (1962), also from the University of Chicago. He served a year on the Law Faculty of the University of Grenoble, France which began a lifelong appreciation of French culture. His career began in 1962 in the office of legal counsel for the Agency for International Development, Department of State, during the Kennedy Administration. Jay met his wife, Ann Lanyon, at a French conversation group, and they were married in London in 1963. Ann had spent a year in France on a Fulbright Fellowship and shared his interest in French language and culture.

Beginning in 1965 Jay entered private practice as an international lawyer. In 1969 he became a founding partner of Kirkwood, Kaplan, Russin, and Vecchi, which grew to an international firm over the next 25 years with 125 lawyers with many national and overseas offices. Locations included Washington, New York, San Francisco, Bangkok, Saigon, Santo Domingo, Beirut, Bogota, Jakarta, Madrid, Moscow, and Taipei. He finished his career as of counsel to Cadwalader, Wickersham, and Taft from 1995 to 2000. Jay represented the State of Israel and the countries of Taiwan, Korea, Vietnam, Pakistan, and Iran. His commercial clients included IBM, Citicorp, Gulf Oil, and InterContinental Hotels, among others.

Jay had countless other projects and interests. He served as president of the Washington Foreign Law Society. He was on the Board of Directors of the Foundation for Moral Courage. He spent many years working to establish a museum of Jewish heritage in Washington, DC to celebrate the accomplishments and contributions of the Jewish community. He was also a member of the Philosophical Society of Washington and was fascinated by cosmology.

Jay was an active member of the Cosmos Club since 1983 and served on and chaired many committees. He successfully nominated nearly 100 other members and in 2018 was awarded the prestigious Founders’ Club award. His family recalls special occasions at the Club such as the Easter or Mother’s Day brunch with children and grandchildren, the New Year’s Eve celebrations, and countless lectures and lunches with friends.

In his retirement Jay became a member then Chair of the Explorers Club Washington Group. Through them he embarked on a series of trips and expeditions all over the world. Some of the most memorable include climbing live volcanoes in Kamchatka, Siberia, climbing sand dunes in the Gobi Desert, Mongolia, watching the orangutans in Borneo, viewing four of the five world’s highest peaks from Sandakphu mountain on the border between India and Nepal, and navigating the Peruvian Amazon. He was active in fundraising events for the Explorers Club that provide field research grants for graduate students.

Jay’s love of art began during his undergraduate years and continued throughout his life. He supported numerous museums and counted renowned curators among his friends. He collected Chinese ceramics, 18th century English and Dutch glass, American studio glass, and American paintings (most notably, a George Bellows winter scene). He was a member of The Glass Circle, attending its meetings while in London on business or holiday, and presenting a lecture on his glass collection in 2017.  His collections also included antique English place card holders and antique Judaica traveling menorahs.

In recent years Jay was an author of two books. The first, “Secrets and Suspense” (2018), captured the highlights of his legal career. One accolade stated that it “read like an international thriller. From working a clandestine Middle East deal, to secretly supporting Argentinian freedom fighters, to trying to establish fast food in France.” His second book, a memoir called, “In Search of Beauty” (2019), illustrated his experiences as an art collector over the course of five decades. At the time of his death Jay was writing a fictional novel that drew upon and intertwined his lifelong interests of art and law.

Jay was a connoisseur of food and wine. He took pride in his personal wine cellar and was a member of the DC chapter of the Confrérie des Chevaliers du Tastevin, a Burgundian wine society. He patronized Michelin starred restaurants and enjoyed crafting multi-course menus for special occasions.

Jay will be remembered as generous, cultivated, and passionate in all his pursuits. He relished a challenge and did not hesitate to try new things. Above all, Jay’s family and friends cherished his energy, optimism, and enthusiasm for life. The poem Ulysses by Tennyson best captures Jay’s spirit, “I cannot rest from travel: I will drink Life to the lees.”


Burial will be private. A memorial service will be held at a future date. The family appreciates the many thoughtful messages from around the world. Gifts in remembrance can be sent to Wesleyan University, the Cosmos Club Foundations, the Explorers Club Washington Group, or the National Gallery of Art.

Wesleyan University: Donations by check may be mailed to Wesleyan University, 291 Main Street, Middletown, CT 06457 or call (860) 685-2110 to make your credit card gift. All checks should be made payable to Wesleyan University. An online form is also available.

The Cosmos Club Foundation (CCF) or the Cosmos Club Historic Preservation Foundation (CCHPF): Donations by check should be made to the appropriate foundation (CCF or CCHPF) and mailed to 2121 Massachusetts Ave, NW, Washington, DC 20008. Credit cards are also accepted.

Explorers Club Washington Group: Donations by check may be made to the Explorers Club Washington Group (ECWG) and mailed to ECWG c/o Treasurer Bruce Blanchard, 80 Observatory Circle NW, Washington, DC 20008-3611.

National Gallery of Art: