Born and raised in Pembrokeshire until the age of 12, Charlie was forced to grow up in a wetsuit and spent every weekend at the beach with her family exploring rock pools and hidden coves. But in 2004, her family set sail on an adventure of a lifetime, relocating to the Canary Islands where Charlie's obsession with the ocean grew. Learning to dive at 14, Charlie spent the next 8 years living in this vibrant archipelago exploring its volcanic shores and submarine wildlife, before returning to the UK to study Conservation Biology at UWE, Bristol. During her degree, Charlie realised that her calling was in marine science, and went on to complete her MSc by research at Glasgow University where she investigated how changing reef assemblages, due to climate change, will impact the role of coral reefs in the context of the global carbon cycle. Her work saw her awarded Glasgow Universities Future World Changer Award in 2019.
Since graduating Charlie has spent the last 3 years travelling the world conducting research on human impacts in our oceans. In 2018, Charlie joined scientists, Nat Geo photographers and filmmakers on the Elysium Expedition to the heart of The Coral Triangle. As lead plastics scientist, Charlie quantified the extent of plastic pollution in this area and presented a documentary on her work. The short film was screened during a four-part symposium throughout Asia, led by David Doublet, Jennifer Hayes and Dr Sylvia Earle. The film was also chosen for the Melbourne Zoo Film Festival in 2020 and screened alongside Netflix documentaries such as Chasing Coral.
After completing this expedition, Charlie's work on marine plastics took her to Saudi Arabia where she lived and worked for a year as a research assistant in the Red Sea Research Centre. Here Charlie led research to assess plastic pollution in marine sediments globally in an attempt to understand what the ultimate sink of plastic pollution is in our oceans. Collaborating with the renowned Prof. Carlos Duarte, Charlie's first co-author paper is now in review.
Alongside leading this research, Charlie worked in the Reef Ecology Lab, assisting with the centre's field research projects. Here, Charlie got to partake in three scientific cruises, complete over 150+ scientific dives and assist with exciting field research projects acoustic tagging blue-spotted rays; turtle nesting site assessments and coral reef surveys. By the end of her time in the Red Sea, Charlie had become a highly-skilled diver and experienced field scientist.
Since returning to the UK, Charlie has continued her research and began pursuing her passion for science communication. Through her outreach and advocacy, she has grown a combined following of >14k followers across her social channels (Instagram, Twitter & YouTube) and is a proud ambassador for Fourth Element Dive. Passionate about amplifying voices, Charlie is now the co-host of the new Women in Ocean Science Podcast (29.4K Insta followers) and has some new and exciting projects on the horizon!
Check out the projects tab for more information.
...And stay tuned!