It is with tremendous sadness that we mourn the loss of our dear friend and colleague, Dr Susan Williams. Dr Williams, one of the original Associate Investigators with the Moorea Coral Reef (MCR) Long-term Ecological Research (LTER) site, was killed in an auto accident while on her way to deliver a lecture on “Life in the Sea.” to a class of undergraduate students at UC Davis. Said Dr Russ Schmitt, MCR LTER Lead PI, "Susan was a tremendous scientist and mentor who was a well-loved and influential colleague. She had a rare gift for visionary leadership and was a passionate advocate for science-based conservation policy. The MCR LTER was indeed fortunate to have had Susan as a founding participant."
Dr Williams was an innovative ecologist and strong mentor for undergraduate and graduate students alike. A former Director of the UC Davis Bodega Marine Lab, she was a pioneer in the study of nutrient physiology of tropical seagrasses, and later made fundamental contributions to our understanding of nitrogen fixation on coral reefs. MCR LTER Co-PI, Dr Robert Carpenter said, "She was a colleague and personal friend of mine for nearly 40 years. Her passing leaves a void that will be experienced widely in the marine science community.".