Mill McCleary, Executive Director
Millard McCleary is the Executive Director for Reef Relief. Originally from Maryland, he spent countless hours fishing around Chesapeake Bay. This is where he learned, early on, of the connection of clean water to healthy ecosystems. This led to 18 years of service working with Clean Water Action (CWA) in Baltimore which then continued into the Tampa area. Over that time, he worked on dozens of water quality related campaigns. He was also the lead organizer in CWA’s campaign partnership with the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) Working America to establish new offices in several US cities.
Mill came to Reef Relief on March 1, 2008, to help run programs to educate and advocate for coral reef ecosystem conservation, specifically in South Florida. Some of his successes with Reef Relief include establishing the Key West Marine Park in collaboration with the City of Key West and Monroe County, founding Reef Relief’s Coral Camp for Kids program, and joining Reef Relief as a member of the Everglades Coalition. Mill helped implement Reef Relief’s Skip the Straw Florida Keys, Plastic Free 305 Key West, and Protect your Skin, Protect our Reefs campaigns. Under his leadership, Reef Relief was instrumental in passing several City of Key West ordinances related to these campaigns to further protect our nearshore waters. He has lead hundreds of volunteers in removing hundreds of thousands of pounds of marine debris, organizing Key West’s storm drain pollution prevention and storm water education programs.
In his spare time Mill enjoys fishing, baseball, and time spent with his wife Melissa and their pup Curty.
Dora DeMaria, Assistant Executive Director
Dora DeMaria was born and raised in the Florida Keys, having graduated from Key West High School. She then attended the Florida State University (FSU) and completed her Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science with a focus on Oceanography. She has completed several environmental internships including with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and the FSU Marine Turtle Research programs. Her other experience includes participating in the FSU Women in Math, Science, and Engineering program, wildlife rehabilitation with the St. Francis Wildlife Association, educational work with Netflix original movie Chasing Coral, and teaching local swim lessons for over 10 years. Dora began interning for Reef Relief in 2017 as the Stormwater Education Intern and Education Intern. From her experiences she realized how much she enjoyed teaching others, especially children, about marine life, and conservation. She took on a full-time position as Education Coordinator at Reef Relief, then Education Manager, followed by the Education Director, now currently Assistant Executive Director for Reef Relief. Since working for Reef Relief, she has taught over 20,000 students in classroom settings and helped successfully launch a virtual platform that has reached over 200,000 people around the world. She also serves as a board member for Last Stand of the Florida Keys and serves as the Education and Outreach alternate seat for the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Council. Dora is incredibly excited to continue expanding the Reef Relief programs and give back to the Florida Keys ecosystems that she grew up in.
Erin O’Brien Bogashewicz, Education Director
Erin was born and raised right outside Buffalo, NY and received her Bachelor of Science in Marine Science with a minor in Environmental Studies from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Stony Brook in 2018. Upon graduating she moved to the Florida Keys, where she discovered Reef Relief and was the Education Intern from January to August of 2019. It was here that she discovered her passion for marine and environmental education and outreach and decided that was the type of role she wished to pursue for her career. She has also participated in a variety of other marine science related roles including an internship with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, working with the Cornell Cooperative Extension Marine Program as an Educator and volunteering with the Cold Spring Harbor Fish Hatchery and Aquarium and the Long Island Aquarium/New York Marine Rescue Center as an Education Docent and a member of the Rescue Team. In May 2021 she returned to Reef Relief as the Education Coordinator, and has progressed on to become the Education Manager, and now the Education Director where she is continuing her role as an educator and leader, supporting and expanding Reef Relief’s educational programs. Since working for Reef Relief she has taught over 12,000 students in classroom settings and over 8,000 students in virtual learning settings around the world.
Taylor Tsacoumis, Program Coordinator
Taylor Tsacoumis graduated from the University of South Carolina in 2020 with a degree in Marine Science. After graduation, she moved to Key West where she was able to combine her love for working with kids and marine science, as the education intern at Reef Relief. Prior to her time in Key West, she worked in Sodwana Bay, South Africa for 8 weeks where she researched the migratory behavior of pregnant Ragged-Tooth Sharks. She spent hours every day surveying the marine life on the reef and collecting data that contributed to a Master thesis. She also works with The Aquatic Life Institute, an International nonprofit that focuses on aquatic welfare, where she creates blog posts and works with conservation groups around the world. She is very passionate about marine science and conservation and is so excited to be stepping into her new role as the Program Coordinator where she can continue raising awareness about our beautiful Coral Reefs.
Julie Molback, Graphic Designer
Julie Molback was born in Illinois and, as a child, dreamt of becoming a Marine Biologist as many children do when they discover the wonders and beauty of the undersea world. Julie’s path instead took her into Graphic Design and she has worked in the Printing and Design industry for over 25 years. In 2000, she moved to the Florida Keys and is now thrilled to be working with Reef Relief on their educational materials and other graphic design needs.