Caroline Witherspoon or
Becker Communications, Inc.
Taryn Bohan
(808) 533–4165


HONOLULU, HI (July 12, 2016) – The Waikiki Aquarium has announced the following new hires:

Jonathan Allen Casey, Aquarium Biologist – Disease and Quarantine Specialist
As a Disease and Quarantine Specialist, Casey will work with University of Hawai‘i veterinarians to ensure the health and well-being of our aquatic vertebrate and invertebrate animals. Casey will serve as the lead biologist responsible for several marine reef tanks and freshwater exhibits and will soon add to the Live Exhibits scientific diving team.

Most recently, Casey was Reef Life Supervisor at Sea Life Park Hawaii. He also previously worked as a Senior Aquarium Technician at Clayton Aquariums. An avid underwater photographer who enjoys free diving and scuba diving, he is a member of the Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI), Divers Alert Network (DAN), Aquatic Animal Life Support Operators (AALSO) and Aquarium Related Professionals (ARP). He also currently serves as a volunteer diver, educator and environmental steward at Wikoliana Educational Excursions.

Born and raised in Seattle, Casey earned his Bachelor’s degree in Cellular and Molecular Biology at George Fox University and completed supplemental coursework at the University of Washington.

Lauren Van Heukelem, Volunteer Coordinator
Van Heukelem has been named Volunteer Coordinator, where she will be responsible for recruiting, training and interacting with new volunteers. She will also coordinate and assist with events and membership promotion.

Prior to joining the Aquarium, Van Heukelem worked as a Teaching Assistant in the Biology program at the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa. Born and raised in Hawai‘i, she graduated from Hilo High School and attended the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa where she played on the women’s water polo team and earned both a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Marine Biology.

Van Heukelem previously coached the women’s water polo team at Waiakea High School and was a Legal Secretary at Crudele & DeLima in Hilo. She is a member of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology (SICB), USA Swimming, the Honolulu Museum of Art and an active member of DAN. She is also UH scientific dive certified and volunteers regularly at algae and beach cleanups around O‘ahu.

About the Waikiki Aquarium
Founded in 1904 and administered by the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa since 1919, the Waikiki Aquarium is located on the shoreline of Waikiki Beach next to a living reef and across from Kapiolani Park. The Aquarium – second oldest in the U.S. – showcases more than 500 marine species, and maintains more than 3,500 marine specimens. Public exhibits, education programs and research focus on the unique aquatic life of Hawai‘i and the tropical Pacific. The Aquarium welcomes more than 320,000 visitors annually, and is open daily from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. except Honolulu Marathon Sunday and Christmas Day. Admission is $12 for visitors; $8 for local residents and active duty military with ID, $5 for senior citizens and juniors ages four to 12; and free for children three and under and Friends of Waikiki Aquarium (FOWA) members. For more information about the Waikiki Aquarium, including membership, call (808) 923-9741 or visit

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