Center for Whale Research

The Center for Whale Research is located on the west side of San Juan Island in Washington state. We are a small organization that is currently under contract with the National Marine Fisheries Service to the monitor and census the endangered Souther Resident Killer Whales.

The director, founder and principal investigator of the Center for Whale Research is Kenneth C. Balcomb III. Dr. Astrid Van Gineneken is the co-principal investigator and Dr John Durban is the research coordinator. There are two staff members, Dave Ellifrit and Erin Heydenreich, who run the filed operations and data management.

Several volunteers, interns and ex-staff come an go throughout the summer to help us complete our seasonal field work.

The mission of the Center for Whale Research is to develop, promote, and conduct benign studies of free-swimming Cetaceans (Whales, Dolphins, and Porpoises) for the purpose of conserving their populations and informing governments and the public of their ecosystem needs.

The Center is a non-profit [IRS 501(c)(3)] corporation registered with the Attorney General in Washington State. CWR funding derives from government contracts, other non-profit organizations, and charitable public contributions. Contributions are tax-deductible in accordance with IRS regulations.