Manager: Tomoaki Hashimoto
He worked in the energy business for nine years at a trading company, but left to become involved in environmental issues. After graduating with a Master’s degree in Environmental Conservation and Policy from a graduate school in England, he became manager of the Ogasawara Marine Center. He loves nature, exercise, adventure, and his hobbies include mountain climbing, diving, and photography. He is committed to working with staff, government officials, the local island community, tourists and supporters to share the appeal and importance of marine life, to take on new challenges, and to elucidate and conserve the ecology of marine life.
Staff member : Takayuki Sato
While at university, he studied Precision Mechanical Engineering, while playing ice hockey and scuba diving. During his time in university, he heard some of his seniors, whom he had met through diving, talking passionately about the charms of the Ogasawara Islands, and he decided he wanted to go there too. In 2005, he planned to visit Chichijima for a short period of time, but the humpback whales, sea turtles, along with the people who live there, fascinated him so much that he spent about a year on Chichijima as a volunteer at the Ogasawara Marine Center. During this time, he learned about the fragility of the Ogasawara ecosystem and had a good opportunity to think about economic activities and environmental conservation. After working as a humpback whale researcher at the Churaumi Aquarium and researching leatherback turtles in Indonesia as an Everlasting Nature of Asia NPO (ELNA) Research Assistant, he took a job as a salesperson for a manufacturer of commercial and industrial humidifiers. He worked hard every day to propose and sell products and services that use the air conditioning technology of humidification to create a good air environment for people. During the summer holidays, he participated in whale watching and research on the ecology of the Japanese cormorant birds. This experience allowed him to realize the importance of fieldwork and wildlife monitoring, and he retired in July 2011. Currently, he has been working for ELNA since August 2011, mainly doing fieldwork and data processing. He is currently studying the Indonesian language.
Staff member : Satomi Kondo
She studied Marine Science and Environmental Management at a university in Australia and after returning to Japan, she worked at a regular 9 to 5 job not related to marine life. However, when she decided to look for a new job position, she came across ELNA and before she knew it, she found herself on the World Heritage Island of Ogasawara. She has been studying every day to learn research techniques while being pushed around by sea turtles and whales.
Staff member : Chiyo Kitayama
When she was 17 years old, she studied abroad on the island of Tasmania in Australia, which sparked her interest in wildlife and inspired her to become a veterinarian. After graduating from university, she spent two years working as a clinician for small animals before moving to the Ogasawara Islands to pursue her dream. At the Ogasawara Marine Center, she mainly conducts research and studies/manages captive animals. Her hobbies include diving, traveling and running but loves eating food the best. She is a big fan of cats and misses her family’s cat, which she keeps at home.
Staff member : Saki Okubo
She has loved animals since she was a child and dreamed of becoming a zookeeper, so she went on to university to study animal science, but found a job at an ordinary company. She started scuba diving during her university student years and her curiosity led her to visit Chichijima which is part of the Ogasawara Islands. With a love for the ocean and animals, she decided she wanted to work in an animal-related field, so she joined ELNA and moved to the Ogasawara Islands. There she spends her days studying and working in the office. She is also learning how to take care of turtles by cleaning and feeding their tanks.
Staff member : Ryuta Ogawa
He studied marine biology at the University of Hawaii and joined the Ogasawara Marine Center as a volunteer in the summer of 2018. During his volunteer life, he gained many experiences at the Marine Center. He especially enjoyed doing fieldwork and turtle breeding in Ogasawara, which led him to finally earn a working position at the Marine Center. Ryuta would like to use photography and social media to let more people know about marine life and increase the appeal of our beautiful oceans. He would like to do his best to help protect it as well.