A.J. was born in Boston and currently resides on Cape Cod in Eastham, Massachusetts. He earned a B.A. in History with minors in Underwater Archaeology and Leadership Studies from the University of Rhode Island in 2015, where he researched the technological development and social impacts of the submarine as a novel weapon of war. After graduation, he commissioned into the United States Army Reserve from URI’s Reserve Officer Training Corps, branching military intelligence. As an Army officer, he has spent years in various leadership roles ranging from the platoon to battalion levels, responsible for the training, development and certification of over 350 soldiers to support overseas contingency operations and the larger Intelligence Community. He currently serves as a scientific innovation portfolio manager in Army Futures Command. Concurrently in his civilian capacity, A.J. is a defense contractor at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center, Division Newport, a U.S. Navy full spectrum research, development, testing and evaluation institution where he has worked in various science and technology positions concerning sensor and sonar systems of nuclear submarines. It was here his love of oceanography, marine science, and biology grew into a passion. Completing night classes, studying whenever time permitted, and attending scientific conferences, he committed to gaining science knowledge and research opportunities, and understands the non-traditional student path in depth.
A.J. is currently pursuing an M.Phil research degree at College of the Atlantic, studying marine science, biochemistry and data science with research interests in marine mammal biology, acoustics and biologically-inspired technologies. He is also the Assistant Stranding Coordinator for Allied Whale, COA’s marine biology research institution, where he aids stranded marine mammals and responds to requests concerning marine animals. His future goals include earning a Ph.D from the MIT/WHOI Joint Program and getting a Tactical Strength and Conditioning Facilitator (NSCA) certification. In his free time, A.J. likes strength training, backpacking, hiking, camping, and cooking.