Emma Westlake

Emma Westlake

 emma westlake


What sector do you work in?

I’m a Research Services Officer at the South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI), which is part of Primary Industries and Regions SA (PIRSA). I’m part of a team that conducts research and stock assessments on a range of commercially valuable fisheries species including snapper, King George whiting, southern garfish, and giant cuttlefish.

How did you get involved?

I have always been a water baby and love all things ocean. I studied a Bachelor of Marine Science degree at James Cook University with a strong focus on marine conservation, followed by internships, volunteering and working (with leatherback sea turtles in Costa Rica, white sharks in South Africa, and coral and fish species in the Seychelles and Great Barrier Reef) and a Master of Applied Science (Marine Environment) Fisheries Management at the University of Tasmania. Combined, these experiences have allowed me to develop skills, knowledge and different perspectives that have led me to my position at SARDI.

Why do you like being a woman in seafood/working in the industry?

I love that I am constantly challenged and experiencing things on a daily basis that others may never like witnessing the mesmerising flamboyant displays of cuttles during scuba surveys, soldiering through swelling nights on the sea sampling fish larvae and eggs, and having the ability to estimate the ages of fish in much the same way as aging a tree. I love my life marine and I’m incredibly proud to be part of science that is helping to ensure the sustainability of our marine resources for today and generations to come.


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