UH degree: PhD ’98 in zoology Mānoa
Doctoral research: Advantage of juvenile coloration in two species of Labroides cleaning wrasses
Career: Director of exhibits and animal husbandry
Active Navy duty: Nuclear fast attack submarine division officer
A graduate of the Naval Academy, Jeffrey L. Mahon spent 26 years with the Navy, on active duty and as a reserve officer at various commands, including service as commanding officer and executive officer before retiring with the rank of commander.
Then he became an aquarist and saw the world.
Mahon was curatorial director of four facilities in Southeast Asia—Underwater World Singapore, Dolphin Lagoon (Singapore), Underwater World Pattaya (Thailand) and Chengdu Hawpar Oceanarium (China). He also held positions as general curator and facilities manager at Underwater World Guam and assistant curator at Underwater World Singapore.
These days, he manages daily operations of live animal and scientific exhibits at the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center in Virginia Beach, Va. As director of exhibits and animal husbandry, he is responsible for 800,000 gallons of aquariums, nearly 300 interactive exhibits, a nature trail and an aviary.
Mahon, who received several awards as a graduate student studying reef fish behavioral ecology, has published research and presented findings at a variety of conferences.