Board of Trustees & Staff

Board of Trustees & Staff

2020 Board Elections:

Dr. Matthew Edson and Bobby Keeney, Jr. are candidates for Tuckerton Seaport’s Board of Trustees for 2020.  Here is information about each candidate:

Dr. Matthew Edson:

Matt grew up on a farm in Eastampton, NJ and now lives on the water in Tuckerton Beach.  He completed Paramedic certification (MICP) through Virtua Health and then went on to graduate from Rutgers Cook College with a double major in Animal Science and Biology (BS). After that, he graduated from the Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine with a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) degree.  He also holds a USCG 50 ton Master Captain’s license.

Aside from his service at the Seaport, Matt is president of the New Jersey Veterinary Medical Association, a Site Visitor for the AVMA Council on Education, former Chair and Large Animal Representative on the AVMA Committee on Disaster and Emergency Issues, and a member of the Tuckerton Economic Development Committee.

Matt is the owner of Rancocas Veterinary Associates, a mixed-animal veterinary practice with locations in Tuckerton, Mount Holly and Eastampton, NJ.

Bobby Keeney, Jr.

Bobby isaA lifelong resident and 4th generation out of Tuckerton. He runs his family’s marina in Tuckerton, Phil Keeney & Sons Inc., which has served Tuckerton and the surrounding area for over 50 years. Bobby has had a life long passion for our town’s historic history and he is well versed in southern Ocean County and New Jersey coastal and maritime history, as well as our local history of gunning, decoy carving, and boat building. For a number of years Bobby has been a member of the Tuckerton Historical Society, Long Beach Island Historical Society, and New Jersey Maritime Museum. He is very proud and honored to be apart of the Tuckerton Seaport and keeping the history alive.

Board Members


President – Jeff Daum P.E.
Mr. Daum is the President of Nelke, Constantine and Associates, a Civil Engineering and Land Surveying firm located in Tuckerton, NJ, specializing in Land Use and Structural Engineering. He is licensed as a professional engineer and professional planner for NJ. He has been a trustee continuously since 1991, having served on many committees. He was instrumental in the original design and planning of the Seaport. His interests include fishing, hunting, golf, and local history.

Vice President – David Roth
David manages PSE&G’s permitting group responsible for project approvals at all levels of government, including the US Army Corp of Engineers, Federal Aviation Administration, US Coast Guard, NJDEP, NJDCA, NJDOT, Soil Conservation Districts, Port Authority, County Planning Board, Municipal Planning and Zoning, and Municipal Construction. He also sits on the State’s Wetlands Mitigation Council. He is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin and holds a Masters in Science from the University of New Hampshire. David has been a resident of the area for 26 years, and resides in Little Egg Harbor with his wife and two children.

Treasurer – Oliver S. Walling III, CPA
Oliver graduated from Stetson University in 1971 and received his accounting education from Rider College. In 1982 he became a Certified Public Accountant and in 1994 received the “Certificate of Educational Achievement in Governmental Accounting and Auditing” from the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. A native of Toms River, Oliver has been working locally as an accountant since 1978. His area of expertise is as an accountant and consultant for nonprofits and fire districts. Oliver is the president of Dottie’s House, Inc. and the treasurer of Friends of Dottie’s House, Inc. He is also President of Homes Now, Inc. and Homes for All, Inc., as well as counsel to the Board of Directors of Toms River Seaport Society. Oliver is a former commodore of the Beachwood Yacht Club. Oliver was a recipient of the Asbury Park Press 2005 Readers’ Choice Award as “One of the Best Accountants in Ocean County.”

Secretary – James W. Allen
Joining the Board in 1997, Mr. Allen served as Vice President for five years (1998-2003). He currently participates in the Membership and Planning Committees and has oversight of the Seaport’s extensive decoy collection. He is a District Manager for Conectiv, a regional utility provider, and an avid decoy collector. Mr. Allen was also an associate at the well-regarded auction house of Guyette & Schmidt, which specializes in decoy sales and appraisals.


Paul Hart
Mr. Hart has earned his B.A. and Masters Degrees from Montclair College.  He was an educator, supervisor and principal in the public school system.  He was also a Clinical Instructor at Kean University.  Paul was the leader in securing a $10,000 grant from the NEH for the establishment of a History Museum at The William R Satz School.  The grant funded the creation of “The Decades Museum” which changes its exhibits monthly to match the Social Studies curriculum.  Paul has served on several boards including the Monmouth County Arts Council Education Committee and the Holmdel Theater Company.  He has also been the Collections Manager for the Stafford Township Historical Society for more than ten years. Paul served as the Executive Director of the Seaport for 8 years and is now Executive Director Emeritus.

Ginger Kop’Kash
Ms. Kop’Kash graduated from Stockton University with a B.S. in Environmental Science.  She is currently an Assistant Commissioner at the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection overseeing the State’s Land Use Management Program.  She has spent more than twenty-nine years working for the department in various positions.  Please click here to read her full biography.

Nikki Loesch-Hechelmann

Susan Speck Polk
Susan Speck Polk is a graduate of Southern Regional High School and Glassboro State College.  She was a teacher in the Mullica Township School District for over 30 years and has been active in the community as a Girl Scout leader, Sunday school teacher and youth group leader, Township Committee Elected Official and coordinators for several different committees.  Please click here to see her entire biography.

Danny Pomponio
Lifelong resident of New Jersey, Danny worked for Tropicana Casino for 10 years. Danny has been owner operator of Pomponio Construction LLC for 18 years.  Danny lives locally in Little Egg Harbor with his wife of 20 years Veronica and their 4 children.  Danny is the President of the Pinelands Fireworks Committee and volunteers his time coaching his kids’ soccer teams.  Danny’s entire family have been active volunteers at The Tuckerton Seaport for many years.  Danny’s children helped start the Seaport’s Community Garden, which donates all of its harvest to the Tuckerton Food Pantry for their neighbors in need.  Danny’s company has help many people get back into their houses from Superstorm Sandy. Danny also volunteers his tractor for the PBA Fall Festival.

Jack Ryan
Mr. Ryan is a self-employed attorney sole practitioner.  He has been a member of the Eagleswood Township, NJ Board of Education (president 2000-2005) and is a Founding Member of the New Jersey Surfing Hall of Fame.  Please click here for his resume.

Auxiliary Board

George Kurtz

Russ Lucas

Dorothy Gehman
Mrs. Gehman studied Business at Penn State and Cedar Crest College. She is an active Community Volunteer. The last ten years include involvement with the following organizations: Habitat for Humanity of Southern Ocean County, Family Promise Program, and Tuckerton Seaport, a Project of the Barnegat Bay Decoy & Baymen’s Museum. Most recently Dorothy has been active as Chairman of the Recreation Committee and librarian for the Choral Group at Medford Leas Community.

Jim Hutchinson
Following a six-year stint as managing director of the Recreational Fishing Alliance (RFA), Jim Hutchinson, Jr. returned to The Fisherman Magazine as managing editor in 2015, a position which he first assumed in 2002. A lifelong hunter and angler, Jim’s father is a longtime outdoor columnist for the Beacon/Beach Haven Times and 2002 Hurley Conklin Award Winner, while his grandfather James Becotte was ran boats for Post Yachts in the 1960’s and 1970’s. Jim Jr. now lives in Forest Hills, NY with his wife and two children, traveling (and fishing) extensively between Little Egg Harbor and Long Island. He’s also president of the Long Beach Island Surf Fishing Classic committee, and a member of the Partnership of Mid Atlantic Fisheries Management Science (PMAFS) and the New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium’s Stakeholder’s Advisory Board.

Tennant Magee
Mr. Magee is a resident of Wall with his wife, Bryn, and their two sons, Tennant, Jr., and Aidan. Professionally, Mr. Magee is an attorney and the owner of Tennant Magee Law, which is located in Brielle, New Jersey. Mr. Magee has been selected as a New Jersey Super Lawyer and has received an AV-Preeminent Rating from Martindale-Hubbell. Relating to the non-profit world, Mr. Magee has previously served and presently serves on various marketing, fundraising, alumni, and leadership committees for Moravian College located in Bethlehem, P.A. Mr. Magee is a graduate of the University of Baltimore School of Law (J.D. 2000), Lehigh University (M.A. 1998), and Moravian College (B.A. 1996).


Key Staff Biographies


Brooke Salvanto, Executive Director
Brooke Ashley Lynn Salvanto enthusiastically serves as Executive Director of the Tuckerton Seaport & Baymen’s Museum. Brooke joined the Seaport staff in April of 2011 as the Development Director. Her current responsibilities include strategic planning, development, fundraising, grants management, marketing, social media, guest relations, and acting as a community liaison and good will ambassador for the Seaport. Brooke arrived at the Seaport armed with a Master’s Degree in American History from Monmouth University as well as experience at other nonprofit education venues, such as the Smithsonian National Museum of American History. With feet firmly planted in the sand of the Jersey Shore, Brooke is a lifelong resident of South Jersey. Prior to her Seaport employment, Brooke worked as the Development Director at Surflight Theatre on Long Beach Island.  Currently, Brooke serves on Tuckerton’s Pride & Celebration Committee and the Pinelands Fourth of July Committee, as well as represents Tuckerton Seaport at the Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce and the Ocean County Tourism Advisory Council. Brooke is a member of the Southern New Jersey Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals. Brooke serves on the Board of the Small Museum Association and she received the Young Altruistic Professional Award from the United Way of Ocean County in 2014 for her community efforts following Superstorm Sandy. Brooke graduated from the American Association for State and Local History’s Developing History Leaders Seminar in History Administration program in Indianapolis last fall.

Connor McIntyre, Site Manager
Connor joined the Seaport team in January 2018.  He oversees all buildings and grounds of the Seaport’s 40 acres as the Site Manager.  Connor earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Studies from Stockton University with a focus on the environment and sustainability.  Connor’s experience also includes landscaping, sustainable farming and construction.  Most recently, Connor completed a boat building course at Independence Seaport.

Catherine McLearen, Guest Experience Manager
Catherine graduated from Seton Hall University with a BA in Political Science and minor in History. She began as the collections and exhibits intern in January 2018. She joined the staff in July of that year working on collections management, exhibits, and guiding school tours.  She is now responsible for scheduling classes and school tours at the Seaport.

Timothy Doyle, Interim Director of Education
Tim joined the staff of the Tuckerton Seaport & Baymen’s Museum in January 2019 as the Interim Director of Education. Having earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Performing Arts from American University and a Master’s Degree in History from Rutgers University, Tim taught history to both middle and high school students, before settling in at the college level at Brookdale Community College in 2008. Tim began working at the Red Mill Museum Village in 2013 and became immediately convinced of how powerful a venue museums can be for teaching history by allowing visitors to almost step back in time to experience what life was like at certain points and places in history. Tim grew up along the South Jersey shore and feels most at home when on or near the water.

Joshua Gant, Environmental Educator
Josh has worked as an Environmental Educator at the Seaport since 2017.  During that time, Josh has led tours, programs and kayaking trips on the Tuckerton Creek.  Josh holds a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Sciences from Stockton University and is currently pursuing a Masters’ Degree.  Josh is also an avid birder with his binoculars always close at hand.

Charlene Ackerman, Membership Manager
Charlene Ackerman began working at Tuckerton Seaport in the Welcome Center in 2007.  Charlene is now our Membership Manager.  She has lived in Little Egg Harbor since 1985 with her husband Bob.  Charlene gained her retail experience from 1989 to 2006 when she owned and operated Clamtowne Crafts right here in “Clamtown”.  Charlene brings not only experience, but a love of Tuckerton’s small town charm.

Diane Hartelius, Business Manager
After retiring from IBM, Diane began volunteering in the Gift Shop in 2012. She also helped at special events and served as a docent for school tours. She enjoyed her volunteer experience so much that she decided to become an employee when offered a position at the Seaport. Diane assists with many of the day-to-day activities, including correspondence and bookkeeping.


Please click here for our current board by-laws!
Please click here for our GuideStar page with IRS reported documents.