In addition to our core team, we collaborate with a number of dedicated and passionate individuals all of whom have at one point worked with LAMAVE. While currently away from our main base, our collaborators continue to contribute to the work of LAMAVE, whether writing publications, analysing data or helping raise awareness.


Steve De Neef

Steve De Neef

Media Team

Conservation and Documentary Photographer

Steve is an award winning conservation and documentary photographer with a keen interest in anything related to the oceans and seas. He’s been diving in the Philippines since 2004 and previously worked as a dive instructor showing people the beauty of our underwater world while also educating about the importance of this fragile ecosystem. Steve’s images have been published worldwide (Asian Diver, Asian Geographic Guide to Great Photography, FOCUS Italy, DUIKEN, National Geographic Traveller, Sportdiver and many more…). Through photography and video he tries to create more awareness about environmental issues while also showing the beauty of our planet.


Diana Scalfati

Media Team

Diana specialized in cinematography and camera operating in film at University but she realized after graduating that her true drive was towards documenting the interaction between people, nature and conservation. Her aim is to use the medium of film and photography to tell human and environmental stories from all over the world. Diana has been working on LAMAVE’s media output since 2014.

BA Media Arts (Hons) – Royal Holloway University of London


Kristina “Tcha” Pahang

Tcha’s love for marine biology began after seeing a physical oceanographer conducting fieldwork on an underwater volcano. After completing her BSc. in Marine Biology at the University of San Carlos, Tcha volunteered for the Bohol Environment Management Office (BEMO), and began working for LAMAVE 2011. In addition to her work with turtles, Tcha focuses on LAMAVE’s information, education, and communications campaigns, including organizing and giving presentations on marine conservation at schools and public events and working as a resource speaker for stranding/rescue workshops. She is now beginning a masters in Tropical Biology and Conservation at James Cook University.


Luke Penketh

A Zoology graduate from UCL, Luke has an huge passion for the environment and its preservation which is infectious to others. Having previously studied the behavioural ecology of gibbons in Thailand, as well as implementing environmental education programmes across different age groups in British schools, Luke devotion to the ocean lead him to join LAMAVE in 2014. A very talented designer, Luke’s design skills have been invaluable to the NGO, helping redesign our website and creating beautiful infographics.


Anna Heath

Anna had an international upbringing, living in 4 different countries before the age of 6, and spending most of her life living in Bangkok, before moving to London to pursue her dream of becoming a Conservation Biologist. After 5 years in the big smoke, she returned to Asia in September 2014 to join LAMAVE and get her first taste of working with an NGO at the forefront of conservation research. Currently Anna’s work with LAMAVE focuses on the wound patterns and healing of whale sharks in Oslob, Cebu.


Catherine L. So

Catherine remembers being fascinated by the ocean and the marine wildlife ever since she was a child. A deeper sense of awareness developed during her college years when she got a wake-up call about the massive decline in shark populations mainly due to shark finning. Since then, she has been reading and learning about conservation and spreading awareness as much as she can. Catherine joined the LAMAVE whale shark research in Oslob in 2012 after a successful career in commercial photography.


Valeria Senigaglia

Valeria has a long lasting passion for animal behaviour and marine mammals in particular. To merge her love for the sea and her curiosity for animals she earned a BSc in Ecological Biology at the Univeristy of Parma in Italy, a MRes with commendation in Applied Marine and Fisheries Ecology at Aberdeen University in UK and she is now an exchange Fulbright student at UMass Dartmouth, US. She studied synchronisation and affiliative behaviour in long-finnned pilot whales in Canada and Spain. She also conducted her MRes thesis on killer whales inter-group behavioural variability and she worked on the Large Whale Watching Experiment, a project on whale watching sponsored by the IWC.

She joined LAMAVE in 2012 as a research assistant on the cetacean project and returned in 2013 to conduct her own research on melon-headed social structure.


Jordy Thomson

Jordy is a behavioural ecologist (Ph.D., Simon Fraser University, Canada) with a background in the movements, foraging ecology and trophic interactions of large marine wildlife including sea turtles, cetaceans and large sharks. He began collaborating with LAMAVE in October, 2014, specifically working on a quantitative analysis of the residency patterns of whale sharks that visit the provisioning site in Tan-Awan, Oslob. Jordy is also analyzing the impact of provisioning on the depth use patterns of four regularly sighted sharks that LAMAVE has tagged with time-depth recorders over the past few years. The goal of this research is to inform the debate surrounding the impacts of provisioning on shark behaviour as well as management options.


Josh Silberg

Josh studied cetacean behaviour in British Columbia, Canada and Shark Bay, Australia before coming to the Philippines for the first time in 2011. He studied humpback whales in the Babuyan Islands off of Northern Luzon before coming to Bohol to work for LAMAVE. He returned for the Feb-June 2012 field season to coordinate cetacean research efforts and manage the photo-identification databases for melon-headed whales, pilot whales, and Risso’s dolphins. He is currently a Master’s student in Resource and Environmental Management at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Canada.


Anna Schleimer

Cetacean internships in the Strait of Gibraltar and on Vancouver Island were decisive in setting Anna’s course for her career as a marine biologist. During her studies (BSc [Hons] Marine Biology, Plymouth University; MRes Marine Mammal Science, University of St Andrews), Anna focused on quantitative ecology, habitat modelling and migratory patterns of baleen whales. After the MRes, Anna wanted to apply her newly acquired knowledge in the field and joined the LAMAVE team for 6 months in 2015 to study the changes in behaviour observed in provisioned whale sharks, leading to the publication of a scientific paper. Anna is vice-president and cofounder of the Luxembourg association ODYSSEA, promoting marine research and awareness through dedicated research projects and internships.