Expedition Team

Our superb team is key to the quality of your experience


Our unparalleled team of Antarctica travel guides assure you an engaging, in-depth experience, and our generous staff-to-guest ratio of 1:10 means more choice in activities, and more diverse personalities and interests you can gravitate to. An expedition leader, eight naturalists/historians, a National Geographic photographer, a Lindblad-National Geographic certified photo instructor, undersea specialist, video chronicler and a wellness specialist all contribute to your experience of the wonders.


Meet the expedition team for this departure

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  • Andrew Atkin

    Naturalist
    After more than thirty-five years work in various technical, teaching and research roles in an Australian university, Andrew is now happily released from full-time work. His research interests promoted a love of the Australian outback and a passion for overseas travel, often using bird studies as a prompt to visit wild and interesting overseas destinations. He was also instrumental in developing and maintaining a long-running program that connected environmental educators in Australia with academics and postgraduate students of the Pranakorn Rhajabat University in Bangkok.

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  • Brent Stephenson

    Expedition Leader
    Brent Stephenson was born in New Zealand and has been a birder since childhood, and in 2005 completed his Ph.D., studying the breeding biology of Australasian gannets in New Zealand.  In 2003, along with Sav Saville, co-owner of their bird-guiding business, he rediscovered the “extinct” New Zealand storm-petrel, a bird known previously from only three museum specimens collected during the 1800s.  With support from National Geographic, he led a team conducting further research on this enigmatic seabird.

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  • Elise Lockton

    Naturalist
    Elise’s passion for travel and interpretation is evident when you learn about the places she has chosen to live, work and travel. A degree in environmental studies introduced her to the world of interpreting nature, which has evolved into both a passion and profession.

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  • Gabriela Roldan

    Historian
    A native of Argentina, Gabriela has lived and worked for more than a decade in Ushuaia, the southernmost town in the world. Her interest for travelling and a degree in tourism management from the Universidad de la Patagonia, led Gabriela to serve as a guide in all corners of Patagonia, Tierra del Fuego, and the Antarctic Peninsula, as well as lecturing widely on South America and Antarctica sharing her first-hand experiences and enthusiasm for the region.

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  • James Hyde

    Naturalist/Expedition Diver
    James is a home-grown, free-range Pacific Northwest outdoorsmen. Born in Seattle and reared nearby on Vashon Island, he grew up in and surrounded by the Salish Sea. James has saltwater in his veins, but would be quick to point out we all do, echoing Carl Safina " We are, in a sense, soft vessels of seawater." Born with the travel bug, James was fortunate enough to spend time on four continents before graduating college. During his studies at Western Washington University's Huxley College of the Environment, James went to Australia and visited the Great Barrier Reef. He was never the same. A lifetime of playing in the productive, but opaque green water of the Northwest had offered him little firsthand experience of the creatures below its depths, but with a clear view of the colorful dramas playing out across the bottom of the tropical Pacific, he was hooked. Scuba diving and underwater ecology were solidified as his passion and after college, it took him to a dive shop in Seattle fixing gear, tidepooling with local middle school students, and generally making a spectacle of himself in the surf.

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  • Johanna Werminghausen

    Assistant Expedition Leader
    Johanna grew up landlocked in a small town in Southern Germany. She realized at an early age that she wanted to see more of the world than the foot of the Swabian Alps and every year, she would beg her parents to spend the summers near the sea. 

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  • Maria Stenzel

    National Geographic Photographer
    Maria Stenzel is a longtime Contributing Photographer to National Geographic Magazine and a documentary filmmaker. She first voyaged to Antarctica by icebreaker in 1995 on a winter science expedition to study the growth of sea ice in the Southern Ocean.  Hooked by the vast spaces of Antarctica, Maria has returned to cover many other expeditions funded by the National Science Foundation. She has photographed geology in the Dry Valleys, astronomy at the South Pole, Emperor and Adelie penguin research at Cape Crozier, Weddell Seal studies in McMurdo Sound, NASA’s airborne surveys of the Antarctic Peninsula (Operation IceBridge), unmanned submarine surveys beneath ice shelves in the Amundsen Sea, humpback whale studies and the marine ecology of the Western Antarctic Peninsula, and the Weddell Sea.

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  • Marylou Blakeslee

    Naturalist
    For the past 20 years, Marylou Blakeslee has traveled the world sharing her love of wild places. She lectures on a number of topics from the bears and wolves of the Arctic, to the leopard seals and whales of the Antarctic, as well as the turtles and fishes of the Great Barrier Reef.

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  • Ralph Lee Hopkins

    Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor
    National Geographic photographer Ralph Lee Hopkins is the founder and director of the Expedition Photography program for the Lindblad-National Geographic alliance. For more than 20 years he has lead expeditions from the Arctic to Antarctica and points in between.

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  • Rich Kirchner

    Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor
    Rich Kirchner has worked as a naturalist in Antarctica, Alaska, the Bering Sea, Baja and the High Arctic, including Greenland, the Canadian Arctic and Iceland. His 25 years as a professional wildlife photographer has granted him international publication credits included in magazines such as Geo Germany, Geo France, Natural History, Audubon, National Wildlife and Ranger Rick, as well as more than a hundred books.

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