Janet Whaley
Janet E. Whaley, DVM
Managing Scientist
Ecological & Biological Sciences
  • Alexandria

Dr. Whaley has 23 years of experience in the federal government and environmental consulting business addressing environmental and ecosystem health issues. Her background in veterinary medicine, ecotoxicology, risk communication and federal government brings a unique perspective to addressing challenging issues. She specializes in wildlife and aquatic animal health with an emphasis on marine mammals, reptiles, fish, birds, and invertebrates. She is currently working with clients from the energy, veterinary pharmaceutical and insurance sectors on a broad variety of environmental issues. Dr. Whaley has over two decades of government service with USDA, NOAA, and DoD, managing projects under several federal mandates including Marine Mammal Protection Act; Endangered Species Act; Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act; National Environmental Policy Act; Oil Pollution Act; Animal Health Protection Act; and Animal Welfare Act.

Dr. Whaley coordinated and managed several national government programs and led projects that influenced outcomes in human health and ecological risk issues. She served as the national program manager for USDA Veterinary Services Aquatic Animal Health Program working with the aquaculture industry, veterinarians, scientists, and natural resource managers to develop policy and guidance to address critical animal health issues. For the U.S. Army, she served as the lead principal investigator on several high profile projects including human health risk of consuming fish and game from DoD hazardous waste sites. Dr. Whaley served as the National Marine Mammal Stranding Network for NOAA for 11 years working with over 130 NGOs to respond to marine mammals in distress and to investigate causes of strandings nationally. She collaborated with international biologists and veterinarians (India, Taiwan, and Caribbean) to build capacity and developed best practices for stranding response and investigation. Dr. Whaley was part of the NOAA marine mammal response team deployed to emergencies nationwide including the 2010 Deepwater Horizon accident. 

Dr. Whaley received a prestigious award in 2011 from the International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine in recognition for her efforts to advance marine mammal conservation. In 2003, she received the Department of Commerce Silver Award for her leadership coordinating the stranding response and investigation of a high profile event that shed light on the issue of impacts of military sonar on marine mammals. Dr. Whaley has been an agency lead on over 30 print, TV, and radio interviews (e.g., ABC Good Morning America, New York Times, Seattle Times, and Smithsonian Magazine) and on correspondence and briefings to Congressional staff regarding marine mammal stranding and aquaculture issues. Dr. Whaley has represented the federal government (DoD, NOAA, and USDA) at many public meetings, speaking on high profile scientific issues. In 2002, she was the lead NOAA veterinarian overseeing the rescue, care, and release of an orphan orca whale; this story was depicted in a PBS documentary that received wide acclaim including an Emmy.

CREDENTIALS & PROFESSIONAL HONORS

  • B.S., Biology, Florida Southern College, 1986, cum laude
  • DVM, Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, University of Florida, 1991
  • Mark Keys Award for Marine Mammal Conservation

    NOAA Recognition of Exemplary Activities

    Department of Commerce Silver Medal Award, 2003

    Department of Commerce Bronze Medal Award, 2002

    Secretary’s Citation from the Secretary of the Maryland Department of Agriculture

    Official Commendation from Brigadier General Patrick D. Sculley, Commander of U.S. Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine

    Official Commendation from Brigadier General Nancy R. Adams, Commander of U.S. Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine

    Official Commendation from Colonel James M. Bosley, Deputy Installation Commander for U.S. Army Aberdeen Proving 

    Omicron Delta Kappa Honorary Society, Florida Southern College, January 1985

Publications

Amos K, Gustafson L, Warg J, Whaley J, Purcell M, Rolland J, Winton J, Snekvik K, Myers T, Stewart B, Kerwin J, Blair M, Bader J, Evered J. U.S. response to a report of infectious salmon anemia virus in western North America. Fisheries 2014; 39(11):501–506. DOI: 10.1080/03632415.2014.967348.

Gustafson LL, Remmenga MD, Gardner IA, Hartman KH, Creekmore LH, Goodwin AE, Whaley JE, Warg JV, Gardner SL, Scott AE. Viral hemorrhagic septicemia IVb status in the United States: Inferences from surveillance activities and regional context. Preventive Veterinary Medicine 2014; 114:174–187.

Sikes R, Gannon W, and the Animal Care and Use Committee of the American Society of Mammalogists. Guidelines of the American Society of Mammalogists for the use of wild mammals in research. Journal of Mammalogy 2011; 92(1):235–253.

Greer L, Whaley JE. Rowles TK. Euthanasia of marine mammals. Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine, Guidelines on Euthanasia for Nondomestic Animals, December 2006.

Greer L, Whaley JE. Rowles TK. Euthanasia. CRC Handbook for Marine Mammal Medicine, 2000.

Whaley JE. Porter RC. Overview of DOD activities in ecological risk assessment. Journal of Drug and Chemical Toxicology 1997; 20:303–305.

McCain WC, Lee R, Johnson MS, Whaley JE. Ferguson JW, Beall P, Leach GJ. Acute oral toxicity study of pyridostigmine bromide, permethrin, and DEET in the laboratory rat. Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health 1997; 50:113–124.

Technical Publications

Whaley J, National Marine Fisheries Service Policy Directive. Animal Care and Use NMFSPD 04-112, July 22, 2010.

Whaley JE. et al. Policies and best practices for marine mammal stranding response, rehabilitation, and release. Environmental Impact Study, NOAA Fisheries, Federal Register April 2009.

Andersen MS, Forney KA, Cole TVN, Eagle T, Angliss R, Long K, Barre L, Van Atta L, Borggaard D, Rowles T, Norberg B, Whaley J, Engleby L. Differentiating serious and non-serious injury of marine mammals. Report of the Serious Injury Technical Workshop, Seattle, Washington, WA, September 10-13 2007, U.S. Dep. Commer., NOAA Tech. Memo. NMFS-OPR-39, 2008.

NOAA and U.S. Navy Joint Interim Report on Bahamas Marine Mammal Stranding Event of 14-16 March 2000. December 2001.

Whaley JE. et al. Aquatic Animal health policy and implementation plan for the State of Maryland. Prepared for the Maryland Aquaculture Advisory Committee, the Maryland Secretary of Agriculture, and Governor Parris N. Glendening, May 1999.

Whaley JE. Johnson MS, Franke LA. Ecological risk assessment of White Footed Mice at J-Field, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland. U.S. Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine Technical Report. Prepared for the Aberdeen Proving Ground Directorate of Safety, Health and the Environment, February 1996.

Johnson MS, Whaley JE. Franke LA, McCain WC. Ecological effects of anthropogenic contamination to amphibians and birds at J-Field, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland. U.S. Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine Technical Report. Prepared for the Aberdeen Proving Ground Directorate of Safety, Health and the Environment, February 1996.

Whaley JE. et al. Health risk assessment of consuming deer from Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland. U.S. Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine Final Technical Report. Prepared for the Aberdeen Proving Ground Directorate of Safety, Health and the Environment, May 1995.

Whaley JE. Health Risk assessment for the consumption of deer from Joliet Army Ammunition Plant. U.S. Army Environmental Hygiene Agency Final Technical Report. Prepared for the Army Environmental Center, June 1994.

Whaley JE. et al. Ecological Risk Assessment for Joliet Army Ammunition Plant. U.S. Army Environmental Hygiene Agency Final Technical Report. Prepared for the Army Environmental Center, March 1993.

Whaley JE. Toxicity clearance for formulations 42-87PR and 42-87PB. U.S. Army Environmental Hygiene Agency Toxicity Clearance Response. Prepared for the Office of the Army Surgeon General, 1993.

Proceedings

Wells R, Manire C, Whaley J. Travels with Betty: A Risso’s dolphin tour of the gulf of Mexico. Strandings; Newsletter of the Southeast United States Marine Mammal Health And Stranding Network, 2007.

Early G, Matassa K, Whaley JE. Marine animal strandings and carcass disposal. Proceedings of the National Carcass Disposal Symposium, Riverdale, MD, 2006.

Hartley D, Whaley JE. Managing solitary Beluga Whales in the Northeastern US—The story of “Poco.” P re-Conference Workshop of the Society of Marine Mammalogy 16th Biennial Meeting, San Diego, CA, 2005.

Whaley JE. Wilkin S. The conservation value of investigating stranded marine mammals. Proceedings of the United Nations Environment Programme Workshop of Experts on the Development of a Marine Mammal Action Plan for the Wider Caribbean, Barbados, West Indies, 2005.

Whaley JE. Holladay SD. Fetal thymic atrophy following low-level subacute maternal TCDD exposure is characterized by thymocyte hypocellularity without altered CD4 and CD8 marker expression. Proceedings of the Society of Toxicology 38th Annual Meeting, New Orleans, LA, 1999.

Kane AS, Whaley JE. Paul J, Reimschuessel R. Angler outreach for fish pathology studies at a U.S. Army Superfund site. Proceedings of the International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, San Diego, CA, 1997; 28:95-103.

Bridges TS, Whaley JE. Summary of a workshop on ecological risk assessment and military-related compounds: current research needs. Miscellaneous Paper IRRP-97-1, U.S. Army Engineer Waterways Experiment Station, Vicksburg, MS, 1997.

Whaley JE. Paul JT, Reimschuessel R, Kane AS. Fish health survey for environmental monitoring at an U.S. Army Superfund Site: Site Impact Assessment and Community Outreach. Proceedings International Aquatic Animal Medicine Annual Conference, Chattanooga, TN, 1996.

Johnson MS, Whaley JE. Application of ecological risk assessments and case studies in the U.S. Army. Proceedings Tri-Service Toxicology Conference at Wright Patterson Air Force Base, 1996.

McCain WC, Lee R, Johnson MS, Whaley JE. Ferguson JW, Beall P, Leach GJ. Exposure to pyridostigmine bromide, premethrin, and DEET in the laboratory rat. Proceedings Society of Toxicology Annual Conference, Anaheim, CA, 1996.

Allred PM, Campbell GH, Whaley JE. Designing sampling plans to evaluate the threat to human health from ingesting venison potentially contaminated with hazardous substances. Proceedings International Congress on Hazardous Waste: Impact on Human and Ecological Health, Atlanta, GA, 1995.

Whaley JE. Wet pets—Veterinary opportunities in the tropical fish industry. Intervet, a veterinary student publication. October 1990 issue.

Presentations at Professional Meetings (abstract included in meeting proceedings)

Whaley JE. Update on the National Aquatic Animal Health Plan; VHS – barometer check; Import/Export 101; NVAP Aquatic modules training. Aquaculture America Annual Meetings, Las Vegas, NV, 2012 and Nashville, TN, 2013. 

Whaley JE. APHIS update on VHS and ISA. Native American Fish and Wildlife Society Annual Meetings, Cherokee, NC, 2012 and Phoenix, AZ, 2013. 

Whaley JE. VHS policy update, ground-truth, and rethink. American Fisheries Society Annual Meeting, St. Paul-Minneapolis, MN, 2012. 

Whaley JE. Update on VHS: A barometer check. American Fisheries Society Fish Health Section Annual Meeting, Lacrosse, WI, 2012. 

Whaley JE. Partnering to investigate ISA in the Pacific Northwest. Western Fish Health Annual Meeting Boise, ID, 2012. 

Whaley JE. Ocean Health and the Marine Mammal Health and Stranding Response Program. American Veterinary Medical Association Annual Conference, Honolulu, HI, July 2006. 

Whaley JE. Ocean Health and the Marine Mammal Health and Stranding Response Program. Maryland Veterinary Association Fall Conference, Towson, MD, 2005. 

Whaley JE. et al. Rescue, rehabilitation, and release if a wild orphaned killer whale – Health assessment. Society of Marine Mammalogy 15th Biennial Meeting, Greensborough, NC, 2003. 

Whaley JE. Rescue, rehabilitation, and release if a wild orphaned killer whale. International Association of Aquatic Animal Medicine 34th Annual Meeting, Hawaii, 2003. 

Whaley JE. Wells R. The role of population monitoring in evaluation of the possible effects of organochlorines on bottlenose dolphin health and reproduction. Atlantic Coast Contaminants Workshop – Endocrine Disruptors in the Marine Environment: Impact on Marine Wildlife and Human Health, Bar Harbor, ME, 2000. 

Whaley JE. Endocrine disrupting chemicals – Public Health Concern or Media Hype. Presented at the American Veterinary Medical Association 135th Annual Conference, Baltimore, MD, July 1998. 

Whaley JE. Holladay DS. Fetal thymic atrophy following low-level subacute maternal TCDD exposure is characterized by thymocyte hypocellularity without altered CD4 and CD8 marker expression. Presented at the 10th Annual Research Symposium, Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine, Blacksburg, VA, June 1998. 

Whaley JE. Overview of DOD activities in ecological risk assessment. Presented at the Tri-Service Toxicology Conference, Wright Patterson Air Force Base, OH, April 1997. 

Whaley JE. Lee R, Leach GJ. A deer study at Aberdeen proving ground: project planning, data assimilation, and risk assessment. Proceedings Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry and Second World Congress Conference, Vancouver, B.C., 1995. 

Whaley JE. Residue analysis and human health risk assessment of consuming deer from Joliet army ammunition plant. Presented at the 18th Annual U.S. Army Environmental Technology Symposium, Williamsburg, VA, June 1994. 

Whaley JE. Bioaccumulation of contaminants at an NPL Army site. Poster presented at the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry Conference, Houston, TX, November 1993. 

Whaley JE. Ecological risk assessment at Joliet Army Ammunition Plant. Poster presented at the Tri Service Toxicology and Risk Assessment Annual Conference, Wright Patterson Air Force Base, OH, April 1992. 

Whaley JE. A comparison of the metronidazole treatments for hexamitiasis in angelfish. Presented at the International Association of Aquatic Animal Medicine Conference, Marineland, FL, 1991. 

Invited Presentations (national and international), Public Meetings and Leadership Briefings 

USDA Agency Representative for public “Townhall” meeting at the annual Aquaculture America Conference (2011–2013). 

USDA agency representative for the AVMA Aquatic Medicine Committee biannual Meetings (2011–2013), Agency and program update. 

USDA agency representative for the Great Lakes Fish Health Committee bi-annual Meetings (2011–2013), Agency and program update. 

Association for Fish and Wildlife Agencies - Fish and Wildlife Health committee and Fisheries and Water Resources Policy committee Annual Meetings (2012-2013) – Agency and program update. 

United States Animal Health Association Aquaculture Committee Annual Meetings (2011–2012) – Agency and program update. 

Lead on over 30 presentations and briefings on marine mammal stranding issues at annual regional and international stranding network meetings and universities while employed by NOAA (2000–2010). 

Lead on over 30 print, TV. and radio interviews with the news media (e.g. Good Morning America, New York Times, Seattle Times, and Smithsonian Magazine) and briefings to Congressional staff regarding marine mammal stranding and aquaculture issues (employed by NOAA). 

Briefed Congressional staffers and Congressman Gilchrest regarding a high profile stranding – December 2000 (employed by NOAA). 

Whaley JE 2011, Ocean Health, A Veterinarian’s Perspective, University of Pennsylvania College of Veterinary Medicine, Ocean Explorers Symposium, (http://www.upenn.edu/pennnews/current/2013-10-10/latest-news/explore-ocean-penn-vet-symposium). 


Whaley JE. Aquaculture Rules of the Road. AQUAVET I, Bristol, RI, 2011. 

Whaley JE. Understanding of Ecological Risk Assessment, Ocean Health, Aquaculture Rules of the Road. Ecotoxicology course, University of Pennsylvania College of Veterinary Medicine, 2004–2013. 

Whaley JE. Cetacean Stranding Response, Rehabilitation, and Release and Acoustics 101. Taiwan Cetacean Society, Taipei, Taiwan, June 2009. 

Whaley JE. Ocean Health and the Marine Mammal Health and Stranding Response Program. Commonwealth Veterinary Conference, Barbados, WI November 2007. 

Whaley JE. Marine Mammal Health and Stranding Response. SEA VET I and II, University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, 2005, 2007. 

Whaley JE. An Overview of Institutional Animal Care and Use Subcommittees. Pre-Conference Workshop of the Society of Marine Mammalogy 16th Biennial Meeting, San Diego, CA, 2005. 

Whaley JE. Ecological Risk Assessment and Toxicology. ENVIROVET, Duluth, MN, 1993, 1994, 1998. 

Briefing to the U.S. Army Combat Systems Test Activity (seminar), Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD; Rabies in Wildlife, 1994. 

Whaley JE. Ecotoxicology, Environmental Toxicology for Physicians; Occupational and Environmental Medicine Rotation, U.S. Army, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD, 1992–1994. 

Whaley JE. Aberdeen Proving Ground Deer Study and Health Risk Assessment. Briefing to the Toxicology Advisory Board for U.S. Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine; February 1995. 

Whaley JE. The Potential Health Risk of Consuming Deer from U.S. Army Sites. Briefing to the Remedial Advisory Board of Milan Army Ammunition Plant, Milan, TN; January 1995. 

Whaley JE. Aberdeen Proving Ground Deer Study and Health Risk Assessment. Briefing to the Environmental Quality Control Committee of the Test and Evaluation Command, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD. Chaired by Major General Richard Tragmann; November 1994. 

Whaley JE. Veterinarian’s Role in Ecological Risk Assessment. Briefing to Colonel Clifford Johnson, Commander of the U.S. Army Veterinary Corp; Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD, April 1993. 

Whaley JE. Contamination and the Foodweb. Earth Day Program (poster), Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD, April 1993 and 1994. 

Whaley JE. Ecological Risk Assessments. Command briefing for the U.S. Army Environmental Hygiene Agency, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD. Chaired by Colonel Ronald Bishop, July 1992.

Prior Experience

Veterinary Medical Officer, National Program Manager, Aquatic Animal Health, United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (USDA APHIS) Veterinary Services, 2011–2014

Fisheries Biologist, National Coordinator, Marine Mammal Stranding Response, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Marine Fisheries Service (NOAA NMFS) Office of Protected Resources, 2000–2011

Biologist, U.S. Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine, Toxicology Division, 1991–2000

Academic Appointments

Attending Veterinarian for the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee, Center for Environmental Studies, University of Maryland, 1994–2014

Professional Affiliations

American Veterinary Medical Association (member 1991–present)

International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine (member 1991–present)

Wildlife Disease Association (member 2000–present)

World Aquatic Veterinary Medicine Association (member 2011–present)

Certified Advanced Scuba diver (NAUI)

Girl Scouts of America National Capital Region Troop Leader (2009–present)

American Fisheries Society (2012–2013)

United State Animal Health Association (member 2012–2013)

Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (member 1994–2003, 2009–2010)

The Society for Marine Mammalogy (member 2000–2010)

The American Society of Mammalogists (member 2008–2010, past member of Animal Care and Use Committee)

Project Experience

Served as the USDA lead project coordinator for a multi-partner surveillance in the U.S. Pacific Northwest region to investigate a highly contagious and potentially devastating viral disease, infectious salmon anemia (ISA). This effort is in direct response to concerns expressed by members of Congress about the health status of wild Pacific salmon and possible risk of introduction of ISA from farmed salmon in the region. (Employed by USDA).

Led a national effort to increase the capacity for aquatic animal pathogen testing. Developed an agency strategic plan to add the first aquatic animal pathogens to the USDA National Animal Health Laboratory Network. The ultimate outcome is to increase U.S. aquaculture exports and increase the Nation’s readiness to respond to foreign animal diseases and other high consequence pathogens using internationally recognized quality management systems. (Employed by USDA).

Managed the development of aquatic animal medicine web-based training modules for the National Veterinary Accreditation Program (http://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_health/vet_accreditation/aast.shtml). As a result, practicing veterinarians can be trained in fish health matters and certified to write health certifications for export. (Employed by USDA).

Served as principal investigator for several high profile projects including human health risk of consuming deer hunted from military hazardous waste site, ecological risk of military unique chemicals, and immunotoxicity of endocrine disruptors. The assessments were used to meet CERCLA requirements and remediation goals. (Employed by U.S. Army).

Served as the National Coordinator of the National Marine Mammal Stranding Network, working with over 130 NGOs to respond to marine mammals in distress and to investigate causes of strandings. The main focus was to build capacity and develop stranding response best practices and trainings targeted for biologists and veterinarians in the U. S. and internationally -India, Taiwan and Caribbean. (Employed by NOAA).

Led the development and implementation of NOAA agency policy for animal care and use of marine mammal and sea turtles in research. As an outcome, NOAA has established institutional animal care and use committees for their science centers and in compliance with the Animal Welfare Act. (Employed by NOAA).

Participated in the Deepwater Horizon oil spill response team for NOAA and was deployed to the Incident Command Center in Houma, LA. Coordinated marine mammal stranding response. Also served as the liaison for NOAA Office of Protected Resources on the NRDA Technical Working Group activities. This effort initiated coordination between two NOAA line offices. (Employed by NOAA).

Led NOAA veterinarian for successful rescue, rehabilitation, and release of an orphan orca whale; this story was depicted in a PBS documentary that received wide acclaim including an Emmy. This was the first and only successful effort in the world and the whale continues to thrive in the wild. In 2013 she gave birth to her first calf.

Led the assessment and development of an agency white paper on alternatives to federal management of viral hemorrhagic septicemia in the Great Lakes Region. (Employed by USDA). The findings resulted in a change of the federal regulatory action.

Conceptualized and led policy development for marine mammal rescue, disease investigations, rehabilitation, and release to include development of an inspection program for rehabilitation facilities - 2009 NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service Best Practices for Marine Mammal Stranding Program – Rescue, Rehabilitation and Release (http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/health/eis.htm).

Managed development and implementation of inspection program for the 30 NMFS authorized marine mammal rehabilitation facilities, engaging stakeholders’ involvement (~ 130 non-federal organizations – U.S. National Marine Mammal Stranding Network).

Co-led and co-authored the 2009 Programmatic Environmental Impact Study – Marine Mammal Health and Stranding Response Program in accordance with National Environmental Policy Act. Marine mammals are protected under the MMPA and ESA. The PEIS applied to stranding response and research activities carried out by the stranding network (over 130 organizations). 

News & Events

CREDENTIALS & PROFESSIONAL HONORS

  • B.S., Biology, Florida Southern College, 1986, cum laude
  • DVM, Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, University of Florida, 1991
  • Mark Keys Award for Marine Mammal Conservation

    NOAA Recognition of Exemplary Activities

    Department of Commerce Silver Medal Award, 2003

    Department of Commerce Bronze Medal Award, 2002

    Secretary’s Citation from the Secretary of the Maryland Department of Agriculture

    Official Commendation from Brigadier General Patrick D. Sculley, Commander of U.S. Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine

    Official Commendation from Brigadier General Nancy R. Adams, Commander of U.S. Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine

    Official Commendation from Colonel James M. Bosley, Deputy Installation Commander for U.S. Army Aberdeen Proving 

    Omicron Delta Kappa Honorary Society, Florida Southern College, January 1985