Meet Our Team

Captain Allan Cronin

Allan Cronin


Growing up in the Blue Mountains of NSW gave me an early and ongoing appreciation of nature and wildlife.

I had my first encounter with humpback whales from a boat many years ago near Broome, WA.

A mother was helping her very newborn calf to the surface to take some of its first breaths.

From that moment I was hooked, and this led to embarking on whale watching trips throughout the world.

Soon after, in 2016, I started working as whale watching guide in Kaikōura, New Zealand, with the amazing sperm whales, dusky dolphins and albatrosses.

I am a keen wildlife photographer and I believe photography has the power to connect people to these impressive and important creatures and to tell a snippet of their story.

I love that each day on the water is different and that each tour has the chance to inspire and educate people about these incredible creatures while respectfully viewing them in their natural setting.

GREEN LIVING TIP: I love this quote from zero waste chef Anne-Marie Bonneau “We don’t need a handful of people doing zero waste perfectly. We need millions of people doing it imperfectly.” Australia currently creates more than 7.6 million tonnes of food waste each year – enough to fill the Melbourne Cricket Ground nine times. So, my tip is to eat all your veggies and consume as local as possible.

Dr Barry McGovern Research Associate

Dr. Barry McGovern

Research Associate

Growing up on Ireland’s west coast and spending all his spare time on, in, or near the water, it was inevitable that Barry would end up working in the marine field!

He joined PWF Australia in 2021, having finished his PhD at the University of Queensland where he studied the social behaviour of bottlenose dolphins.

He leads the research team in Hervey Bay studying the health and ecology of the whales and dolphins in the bay.

Barry has covered a range of areas working all over the world and brings a lot of experience to the team.

Barry appreciates scientific research that can shape conservation measures and help guide management decisions and this is what attracted him to working with PWF.

“To me, it’s important that our research has a conservation goal, spending all of this time an effort to collect high quality data should benefit the species and this is a key goal of PWF”.

GREEN LIVING TIP: Recycling is great but should be one of the last measures you consider, reducing our overall use of plastics, single-use items, etc. and changing that mindset should come first.

Andrew Ellis

Board Member

With a life spent on the water, and a 30-year history of whale watching in Hervey Bay, Andrew brings incredible experience to the team.

“Nothing is more exciting than to see the expectations of our guests fulfilled each day on Ocean Defender. The excitement and passion shown by all aboard when they experience humpback whales up close and personal is a very special moment for me every day.”

Andrew’s passion for our marine environment is shown by his love of joining school students for discussions on how we can all make a difference by, ensuring harmony with our increasingly pressured natural environments.

Andrew hosts numerous conservation events, including Hervey Bay’s annual Paddle out for Whales event and beach clean-ups in the local community.

An accomplished public speaker, Andrew loves to talk with community groups about our marine environment and how we can all make a positive impact as individuals.

With a working lifetime spent on commercial vessels from square rigged sailing vessels to tourism vessels and just about everything in between, Andrew needs the smell of salt air and the joy of experiencing our ocean in everything he does.

Janelle Horrigan

Eco Tours Manager

Growing up in the twin towns of Coolangatta and Tweed Heads – spanning the border of Queensland and NSW – I lived within walking distance of Point Danger, a well-known viewing point for the “humpback highway”- where the whales come so close to shore with their calves on their journey south that you can see their shadows against the sand!

With a passion for whales – from whales visiting me in my dream-state – to running a small walking tour business to watch the whales from the coastline – and creating art featuring whales and calves – whales are in my blood!

The marine environment is my happy place – I achieved my PADI scuba accreditation at Cook Island, have been a member of the Volunteer Marine Rescue, and was a member of the local surf life saving club from the time of being a nipper!

Surrounded by incredible natural beauty, located in a town which was built and supported by tourism, I have lived and experienced the positive and negatives effects of tourism on our natural world – and the importance of communications and the political landscape in influencing behaviours and legislation which is enacted to protect the environment and residents.

I studied Mass Communications and International Relations at University – which provided me with a broad understanding of the mechanisms and methods of communication, ethics and fairness, along with a contemporary view of the political and non-government landscape.

Having worked in tourism, hospitality and the arts, as well as for government and non-profit organisations,  my passion for conservation has led me to business development positions which have involved creating education and communication campaigns, providing workshops and seminars, and researching sustainable tourism opportunities.

I feel blessed to now be in a position where I can combine my passion, experience and skills to contribute to the business development of Pacific Whale Foundation Eco Adventures Australia, and the conservation of our natural world – in particular our marine environment and the protection of the beautiful, gentle giants!

GREEN LIVING TIP: Don’t buy what you don’t need. Fashion is transient – style is enduring! Buy second-hand if you can to help reduce the fast-fashion crisis. And if you love to shop online – try to find retailers who offer sustainable packaging.

Marilyn Hill

Retail Manager - Ocean Store

Growing up on the Gold Coast Marilyn has a profound appreciation for the environment.

Marilyn has worked across diverse industries, including healthcare and retail. Marilyn recognizes the impact these industries can have on our planet and believes that every individual has a responsibility to be mindful of our actions and their impact on the world around us.

Marilyn leads a minimalistic lifestyle and has constructed her home using reused shipping containers and recycled materials.

When she is not at Pacific Whale Foundation, she spends her downtime on her hobby farm or go camping with her growing family.

GREEN LIVING TIP:  It is estimated that up to 6,000 tons of sunscreen are washed into coral reefs around the world each year.  Shop for sunscreen that’s free of Oxybenzone and Octinoxate these two chemicals are reef killing chemicals.  Look for sunscreens that feature Oxide and Zinc Oxide and the words “reef safe” on the label.

Sara Perrott


Felicity Holder

Office Manager