Lynker’s Michael Clark is a Pacific Islands Region Observer Program (PIROP) legend, having recently completed his 3,400th sea day in May 2019 – some quick math will tell you that “Uncle Mike” has spent almost 10 years of his life on board Hawaiian longline (tuna) fishing vessels contributing to NOAA’s understanding of commercial fishing effort, endangered species population dynamics, and other scientific research in the Pacific.
When not at sea, Mike enjoys watching football with his family. It’s only appropriate that his favorite team happens to be the one with a marine mammal as a mascot.
To commemorate Mike’s achievement, Lynker presented Mike with a Dan Marino-autographed jersey at a small gathering of fellow observers, friends, and colleagues at NOAA’s new Inouye Research Center on Ford Island on June 17, 2019.
Uncle Mike started observing on 2002. His spirit, work ethic, tenacity, and reliability have made him a legend within the observer and fishing communities. He has also become an exceptional mentor and resource for new observers entering the program.
When asked, what’s kept him going for so long, Mike humbly says, “Every trip is different, you always learn and see something new! My dream was always to be a marine biologist, and this job has gotten me there, and I love it!”
Mike is always ready to talk story. A man with an easy laugh and a quick smile, we are lucky to have him. Mahalo Nui Loa, Uncle Mike.
On behalf of all our Lynker staff here in Hawaii, we wish Uncle Mike continued success on the sea, and many mahalos for his years of hard work in challenging conditions.