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:: Dr. Richard Pyle, Ph.D. - Science - 2004

Dr. Richard Pyle, Ph.D.   Dr. Richard Pyle was born and raised in Hawaii, where his passion for "all things fish" began at a very early age. He set up his first aquarium when he was five years old, and started scuba diving when he was thirteen. By the time he was nineteen, he wound up living in Palau where his passion for discovering new fishes lured him into deep water, resulting in a crippling case of decompression sickness while diving with world-renown ichthyologist John "Jack" Randall. Jack then offered him a job in the fish collection of the Bernice P. Bishop Museum in Honolulu, where Richard continues to work nearly two decades later.

Earning his PhD under Jack's tutelage, Richard's passion for undersea exploration never waned. Determined to continue exploring of the coral reef "Twilight Zone" (200-500 feet deep) in a safe and responsible way, he was among the pioneers of modern Technical Diving in the late 1980's. In 1994 he began as a test-diver for the prototype Cis-Lunar MK-4 closed-circuit rebreather, and has traveled the Pacific in search of new species of fishes on
deep coral reefs - which he and his colleagues are discovering at a rate of eleven new species per hour of bottom time.

Richard has authored over a hundred scientific, technical, and popular articles and has been featured in dozens of documentary films (including the IMAX film, Coral-Reef Adventure). He was a founding member and is currently on the Board of Directors for the Association for Marine Exploration - a non-profit organization dedicated to conducting innovative scientific exploration using advanced diving equipment and techniques. In 2004, he was selected by Esquire magazine for the "Best and Brightest" issue, and was also recipient of the "Genius Award" from General Electric to help support his research.

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