Our People

Get to know our people

At our marine conservation project, we take immense pride in the diversity of our team, which brings together individuals from both Western and Indonesian backgrounds.  What unites us is our shared passion for the ocean and our unwavering commitment to creating positive change.  Our team members boast extensive dive experience, conservation expertise, and research skills.  Together, we are driven by a common goal: to make a meaningful impact in safeguarding our precious oceans for future generations.

Cenna

Cenna is a marine science graduate from Surabaya, East Java, Indonesia. Growing up in a bustling metropolis, her insatiable curiosity led her to immerse herself in the world of marine life.  Cenna’s interests led her to join a diving club focused on coral reef monitoring, marine pharmacology, and seagrass conservation. She attained open water and scientific diver certifications during her academic journey and was awarded the Coral Catch Scholarship in 2022. Inspired by her experiences, she aims to empower women in marine conservation and sustainable fisheries as the Coral Catch Program Manager, alongside her passion for underwater photography and ocean advocacy on social media.

Job TitleJunior Researcher
BornSurabaya, 10 October 2000
SuperpowerShape-shifter extraordinaire—mastering new challenges with a smile! Psstt.. also a design chameleon, I could transform from working in spreadsheets to color palettes
Fun FactLike princess Aurora, I could sleep all day!
Favorite research methodCoral Health Index especially Point Intercept Transect!
Best loved sea creatureNudibranch and Manta Rays
Bucket list diveCave and shipwreck diving with metal detector
Achievement(s)Published an international journal about coral reef and reef fish condition of Karimun Jawa and won best oral speaker
Proudest Team MomentWorking together since building structures to deploy coral reef nursery to site!
Hidden Talent or unusual hobbyLove to karaoke but can’t really sing…
Favorite work playlistany upbeat song, song from the 2000s or even a mellow song to sing along
Personal goalI want to be proud of myself, get my divemaster certification and get a master degree for coral transplantation!

Wika

Wika is an ex-journalist and (still!) a passionate writer from Jakarta, Indonesia. She has always been on the move since she was little – born in Surabaya, moved to Jakarta, studied in Depok, West Java, and Den Haag, The Netherlands, lived in Bali, and ended up on this beautiful island, Gili Air. Her craving for adventure, learning new things, and meeting new people always get her everywhere.

Job TitleCommunication Specialist
BornSurabaya, East Java, Indonesia on the 1st of April 1995
SuperpowerJuggle-wizard, efficiency guru, team-spirit cheerleader, and hunts down solutions like a detective on a caffeine buzz
Fun FactWika was invited to join Indonesian Idol audition
Favorite research methodRemote Underwater Video
Best loved sea creatureHammerhead shark and Manta Rays
Bucket list diveDive with schooling Hammerheads in Banda Sea and Alor
Achievement(s)Granted a full board scholarship for her master’s degree in Europe, and selected as one of Coral Catch superwomen Batch #5
Proudest Team MomentWhen we always come up with unthinkable and out of the box solutions in the challenges we face
Hidden Talent or unusual hobbyWika finds tranquillity in walking alone in cemeteries
Favorite work playlistJacob Collier
Personal goalBe a scuba instructor, build my own business and dive centre that also contributes to marine conservation works.

Aris

Aris completed his marine biology degree in 2022 at the Sam Ratulangi University.  Aris is an extremely passionate and driven marine biologist and just loves absolutely everything about the ocean and wants to do everything possible to help save it.

Job TitleMarine biologists and dive instructor
BornManado North Sulawesi, Indonesia on the 26th of October 1995
SuperpowerSelf-taught artist (singer and guitar player)
Fun FactAris does recurve archery
Favorite research methodCoral Health Index
Best loved sea creatureOrca whales and nemo
Bucket list diveCage diving with great white sharks
Achievement(s)Aris obtained a marine biology degree, is certified coral reef assessor, and has snorkeled 10 km in 2 hours
Proudest Team MomentWhen we play team bonding games together
Hidden Talent or unusual hobbyAris likes to walk in the dark alone
Favorite work playlistMusic travel love
Personal goalTo get his masters degree in marine biology and to build his own ex situ coral nursery

Cakra

Cakra received his bachelors marine science degree in 2018 and masters degree in 2022.  During his studies Cakra collected socio-economic and biophysical data with a specific research focus on nudibranchs.  Cakra is very passionate about marine science and is committed to fighting against human exploitation of our natural resources.

Job TitleMarine Biologist and Community Officer
BornSerang West Java, Indonesia on the 16th of May 1994
SuperpowerSuper fast learner
Fun FactCakra used to have mohawk
Favorite research methodPhotogrammetry
Best loved sea creatureNudibranch
Bucket list diveDiving with crocodiles
Achievement(s)Cakra received his bachelors and masters in marine science, received second place from Hack the Planet
Proudest Team MomentGetting MoU signed with the university and government so they can continue their research and education within in the Gili Matra Reserve
Hidden Talent or unusual hobbyWaking up in the morning at 2 am and goes to bed at 9 pm
Favorite work playlistM83
Personal goalCakra wants to see all stakeholders and all people coming together to work on conservation, no competition just everyone working together.

Maisy

Since graduating in 2016, Maisy has worked all over the world on various tropical conservation projects as both a researcher and educator. During this time, she became a PADI Divemaster, conducted hours of reef surveys, outplanted hundreds of corals, educated thousands of people and became a qualified teacher. Maisy is hugely passionate about conserving the environment and reducing the anthropogenic threats it faces. She believes the only way we can do this is by educating one another and working together towards a brighter future!

Job TitleOperational Manager and Lead Scientist
BornIn the UK on the 17th of January 1994
SuperpowerBeing able to organize and problem solve very quickly
Fun FactMaisy has assisted/worked on research conservation and education projects in eight countries
Favorite research methodPhoto ID
Best loved sea creatureTurtles
Bucket list diveDiving with a leatherback turtle
Achievement(s)Maisy received her Masters Degree in Marine Biology in 2016 and Teaching Degree in 2021. Being recognized by PADI and Women in Ocean Science as making an impact in Marine Conservation. Developing and presenting live underwater broadcasts that have been watched by thousands of students worldwide.
Proudest Team MomentRedeveloping, improving, and expanding the project with a (nearly!) brand new staff team after being shut down due to covid. Our project is now bigger and better than ever!
Hidden Talent or unusual hobbyHaving probably the loudest voice on the island
Favorite work playlistAnything you can dance and sing along to!
Personal goalContinue to expand our research, conservation and education efforts on Gili Air!

Rose

Rose Huizenga has been living in paradise for almost 10 years and knows the island inside out. Before she moved to Indonesia she lived in the Netherlands where she ran her own marketing company and worked for multiple volunteer organizations.

Rose is one of the founders of Gili Shark Conservation and the creator of Coral Catch. She is a passionate conservationist, writer, scuba dive instructor, boutique hotel owner, and proud mother of two young girls

Job TitleCo Founder & Director
BornIn the Netherlands on the 14th of May 1984
SuperpowerDreaming big and believing that everything is possible
Fun FactRose arrived with her backpack on Gili Air in 2012 and was planning to stay for only two days. She fell completely in love with the island and never left
Favorite research methodPhoto ID
Best loved sea creatureMola Mola
Bucket list diveDiving with a school of hammerheads
Achievement(s)Rose got named SeaHero for by Scuba diving magazine for making marine conservation careers accessible to all women in Indonesia. Furthermore, she won several awards with Gili Shark Conservation and her Coral Catch program. But if you would ask her what you are most proud of she wouldn’t mention any awards, instead she would tell you about her time with the Coral Catch Superwomen and how they inspire her on a daily basis to fulfill her mission: empowering a hundred girls in the next five years to have a career in marine conservation.
Proudest Team MomentTo many! We achieved so much since the start that I wouldn’t even know where to start.
Hidden Talent or unusual hobbyBeing able to make someone smile, even in their darkest moments
Favorite work playlistTake of your heels and dance with me tonight
Personal goalTaking her two daughters scuba diving in Raja Ampat and showing them the magic of the underwater world.