Administrator: Tom Cullen
Mr. Cullen was appointed by Governor Jerry Brown as the Administrator of the California Office of Spill Prevention and Response (OSPR) in June 2012. He also serves as one of two Chief Deputy Directors of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. Mr. Cullen directs a team of scientists, environmental specialists, wildlife officers and support personnel in protecting and preserving the 1,100 mile coastline, 30,000 miles of rivers and streams, and 4,800 lakes of State waters from oil and other deleterious substances as well as invasive, non-indigenous marine species.
Mr. Cullen served in the United States Coast Guard for 27 years, retiring with the rank of Captain. From 2008 to 2010 he served as Deputy Commander of Coast Guard Sector San Francisco where he performed a wide range of federal duties in the San Francisco Bay region including Captain of the Port, Federal Maritime Security Coordinator, Federal On-Scene Coordinator, Officer-in-Charge of Maritime Inspections, and Search & Rescue Mission. Captain Cullen received his commission and a Bachelor of Science in Ocean Engineering from the Coast Guard Academy and a Master of Science in Industrial Administration from the Krannert Graduate School of Management at Purdue University. He is also a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) and a licensed Airline Transport Pilot (ATP). Mr. Cullen and his wife, Mary, are residents of Novato and are the proud parents of five children.
Assistant Deputy Administrator: Julie Yamamoto
Julie serves as one of OSPR’s two Assistant Deputy Administrators and is responsible for oversight of various scientific programs and functions, including natural resource damage assessment, response technologies, geographic information systems, oiled wildlife response, environmental field response, spill data tracking, marine invasive species, petroleum and water quality laboratories, military base cleanups, marine invasive species, the Marine Wildlife Veterinary Care and Research Center, and spill preparedness (drills, spill training, and health and safety). Julie also supports OSPR’s administrative and legislative functions. She has been a part of the OSPR team for 18 years.
Julie holds an MS in avian biology, and PhD in environmental toxicology from UC Davis. Her past research has focused on impacts of various contaminants on wild birds. She worked at the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment in their Ecotoxicology Unit for 5 years prior to coming to OSPR.
Assistant Deputy Administrator: Steve Hampton
Steve serves as Assistant Deputy Administrator for OSPR’s external affairs and regulations units. His recent work has focused on crude-by-rail, abandoned and derelict vessels, and coordination with native nations and communities. Prior to his current role, he served OSPR as a resource economist, focusing on natural resource damage assessments after oil spills and other pollution events. Steve has a Ph.D. in Agricultural and Resource Economics from the University of California, Davis and a Bachelor’s of Arts in Government and Public Policy from Pomona College in Claremont, California.
While formally trained as an economist, Steve has been an avid birder for most of his life. As such, he has published in both economic and ornithological journals.
Environmental Response Branch Chief: Greg McGowan
Environmental Program Manager I: Janna Rinderneck
Janna began work for the department’s Water Pollution Control Laboratory in 1986, conducting pesticide extractions and analysis, while pursuing her Bachelor of Science in Biological Conservation. After graduation, she gained experience in fisheries, bioassay, and laboratory auditing, until serving from 1998 to 2011 as CDFW’s statewide expert and technical specialist for hazardous material spill response and inland oil spill response. After supervising the Petroleum Chemistry Laboratory for four years, Janna became Environmental Program Manager for the OSPR Laboratory Program, overseeing five field and laboratory functions: The Petroleum Chemistry Laboratory, the Water Pollution Control Laboratory, the Aquatic Bioassessment Laboratory, the Marine Invasive Species Program, and the Marine Pollution Studies Laboratory. The projects include a statewide field bioassessment program and chemical analysis for spill responses as well as supporting various other CDFW programs.
Prevention Branch Chief: Ted Mar
Ted came to OSPR after more than 22 years with the U.S. Coast Guard, where he was stationed at Marine Safety Offices (MSOs) in Los Angeles-Long Beach and San Francisco, and was the Assistant Chief of the Marine Safety Division at Pacific Area/District Eleven in Alameda. He received his Bachelor of Science in Chemistry with high honors from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, and was sent to UCLA for graduate studies in Chemical Engineering. After spending time with the Coast Guard’s Central Oil Identification Lab as a cadet, and assignments as the Marine Environmental Response Officer at two MSOs, Ted became convinced that oil spill prevention was a better time investment of personnel resources than continuing to respond to spill after spill. Ted left OSPR to become the supervisor of the State Lands Commission’s Marine Facility Division Northern California Field Office, then returned to OSPR to advocate for improved oil spill prevention practices as its Marine Safety Branch Chief. The Marine Safety Branch was renamed the Prevention Branch when OSPR assumed statewide responsibility for oil spills.
Public Affairs Unit Manager: Steve Gonzalez
Steve manages OSPR’s public affairs and government outreach unit. He first joined the department as a public information officer in 2013, after a nearly two decade-long career as a multimedia journalist with Sacramento NBC affiliate KCRA. Gonzalez also worked in the communication departments of Caltrans, and CDFW headquarters before his promotion at OSPR in January 2017. He has deployed to numerous oil spill responses statewide, including the Refugio Beach spill near Santa Barbara in May 2015.
Preparedness Chief: Yvonne Addassi
Yvonne serves as OSPR’s Chief of Preparedness. She previously served as Deputy Administrator from 2012-2015, as appointed by Governor Jerry Brown. Yvonne started her career with OSPR in 1991 and has since worked on landmark vessel and facility contingency plan regulations, coordinated statewide evaluation and licensing of oil spill cleanup agents, developed policies on the use of chemical dispersants and in-situ burning, and supervised the northern California scientific field response team. She is recognized for her work in facilitation and risk communication techniques and the use of net environmental benefit analysis as a means of scientific policy development and evaluation. She has extensive oil spill response experience, and has filled many roles during incidents that include Wildlife Branch Director for the Cosco Busan and S.S. Jacob Luckenbach responses, and ART technical specialist on behalf of NOAA for the Deepwater Horizon response. She received her Master of Science in Ecology and Environmental Policy from the University of California, Davis in 1997, and a Bachelors of Sciences in Biology in 1985. She completed a Public Affairs and Public Policy Fellowship program in 1988 with the CORO Foundation.
Resource Restoration Program Manager: Michael Anderson
Mike leads OSPR’s Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) and Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) Units. He received his Bachelor’s of Science in aquatic biology from UC Santa Barbara, Master’s degree in zoology from the University of Hawaii, and doctorate in pharmacology and toxicology from UC Davis. Dr. Anderson’s state service spans over 20 years, first acting as an exotoxicologist with the Department of Toxic Substances Control, before joining OSPR in 2007. Prior to state service, he held positions in both academia and consulting. His expertise focuses on the harmful effects of oil and other hazardous substances on wildlife. Dr. Anderson has served as State Lead Representative for several California multi-agency natural resource damage assessments (NRDAs), including the Cosco Busan, Dubai Star, and Refugio Beach oil spills.
Financial and Administrative Services Chief: Amir Sharifi
Amir Sharifi serves as OSPR’s branch chief for Financial and Administrative Services and oversees its budget, personnel, contracts, financial programs and business services functions, as well as OSPR’s finance and logistics sections during an emergency response.
Response Technology Chief: Greg McGowan
Greg joined OSPR following a 23-year-plus career as a professional ecologist, during which he led an Incident Response and Recovery Team, addressing spills across North America. He has responded to incidents in the U.S. and abroad, typically serving in the Environmental Unit. At OSPR, Greg manages the Response Technology and Support team comprised of six technical disciplines and staffed by an outstanding group of subject matter experts. The technical teams include: Best Achievable Technology, Oiled Wildlife Response, the Marine Wildlife Veterinary Care and Research Center, Applied Response Technology, Fishery Closure, and Geographic Information Systems (GIS).
Law Enforcement Division Chief: Paul Hamilton
Paul is from Southern California, where he did both his undergraduate and graduate work at San Diego State University. Following his education, he worked as a biological consultant focusing on habitat restoration, small mammal trapping, and avian surveys. Paul came to OSPR in 1998 as a Wildlife Law Enforcement Officer, and has promoted through the ranks as a Lieutenant Supervisor in Long Beach, and as the inland pollution Captain, where he served for 10 years. In 2015, Paul became OSPR’s Chief of Law Enforcement. He oversees a statewide team that protects the wildlife and waterways throughout California. When not working, Paul enjoys spending time with his wife and sons, growing wine grapes, and fishing.
Information Technology Chief: Damon Williams
Damon proudly served our country for nearly seven years in the U.S Army, before joining California state service in 1992. He began his career as an application developer for the State Compensation Insurance Fund and the California Community Colleges Chancellor's Office. Damon quickly moved up the ranks and became a supervisor in 1998, joining OSPR in 2003. As Chief of OSPR's Information Technology Operations Branch, he oversees and manages application development, networks, servers, personal computer support, as well as web and communication services. During a spill response, Damon is focused on making sure his staff and technology are quickly available and ready to use.
Assistant Chief Counsel: Eric Milstein
Eric came to OSPR after more than 15 years of state service, most recently as a senior counsel at the California State Lands Commission, specializing in public land issues. He previously served as a Navy Flight Officer in the United States Navy and retired as a Commander with 25 years of active and reserve service. This service included multiple deployments from the Arctic to the Antarctic and from the Persian Gulf to Pacific. He holds a Juris Doctorate degree (JD) and Certificate of Governmental Affairs from McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific, and a Bachelor’s of Science from Penn State. During spill responses, Eric and the OSPR legal team deploy to the incident command post, where they provide legal guidance to the OSPR administrator and staff. They also coordinate with other legal counsel involved in the incident, and begin preparation for potential legal actions resulting from the spill.