NIST has been involved in environmental specimen banking for over 30 years, maintaining representative biological and environmental specimens throughout the U.S, including Alaska and more recently, the Pacific Islands Region, for long-term storage. Specimens are archived without changing the chemical composition and properties of the sample itself, as a part of several on-going monitoring and research programs supported by the U.S. Government. These scientific collections are maintained at the Marine Environmental Specimen Bank (Marine ESB) facility at the Hollings Marine Laboratory (HML) in Charleston, SC. Specimens are analyzed retrospectively to determine time trends in emerging contaminants of concern in the environment and as part of multi-agency efforts to determine health trends in marine animals/biota (i.e. marine mammals, seabirds, sea turtles, coral, shellfish, fish, sediment). Rebecca is involved in the collection, processing, and archival of the marine specimens and helps to develop standard operating procedures (SOPs) and protocols for specimen banking under clean room conditions and contaminant sampling.
Rebecca has been a Research Biologist with NIST since 1998 and is currently the Program Coordinator for the Environmental Specimen Group of the Chemical Sciences Division. Rebecca is responsible for the overall operations of the Marine ESB. She has authored several reports under the NIST Internal Report Series and authored and co-authored a number of peer-reviewed publications and has presented work at several national and international conferences.
Professional Awards and Recognition:
- U.S. Department of Commerce Bronze Medal Award for Superior Federal Service: For developing a chain-of-custody biorepository program to support NOAA's Natural Resources Damage Assessment of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, 2012
- International Society for Biological and Environmental Repositories (ISBER) Special Service Award, 2011
- International Society for Biological and Environmental Repositories (ISBER) Special Service Award, 2008
Membership and Professional Activities:
- International Society for Biological and Environmental Repositories Board of Director, 2010-Present
- Biopreservation and Biobanking Journal, Editorial Board, 2009-Present
- International Society for Biological and Environmental Repositories Member, 1999-Present