Our Crew

Captain Bob Avila

Bob grew up in New Bedford in a fishing family of Portuguese descent and has always been involved in fishing and boating. He has been a Captain for over 4 decades and involved in Whale watching for the past 30 years. Bob lives in Sandwich with his wife Cary and has a son Alex who is also a licensed Captain who loves the water.


Captain Russ Burgess

Russ Burgess was born and raised in Plymouth, Ma. He has been fishing the waters of Cape Cod Bay for over 20 years and has held a 100 ton Captains license for 15 of those years. He is certified in CPR and primarily runs the Capt. John and Son II.


Captain Kenny Hyslop

Kenny is 30 years old, from Plymouth MA. His interest in fishing came about when he went on a fishing trip during middle school. He then started here as a deckhand at the age of 13. When he turned 19 he received his 100 ton Captains license. Kenny has been featured in a magazine in New York, and he is certified in CPR. He primarily works on the Capt. John & Son full day Fishing Trips, as a Captain and deck hand.










Naturalist Diane Buckbee

Diane started her career with Captain John 22 years ago when she collected whale data on board for a class at Bridgewater State University. She loves sharing her knowledge and experience, and is passionate about education and fostering a sense of guardianship over our magnificent Gulf of Maine whales. Of particular interest to her is our Floating Classrooms,in which we begin educating even the youngest of students, about the intricate and delicate nature of our oceans. She firmly believes she has the best job in the world!




Naturalist Michelle Collins

Michelle comes to us from the fine state of Illinois. She graduated in 2012 from the University of Illinois with degrees in Integrative Biology and Psychology. Just after graduation, she came to Plymouth as an intern on Captain John for Whale and Dolphin Conservation (WDC), the world's leading charity dedicated to the protection of whales and dolphins. Shortly after, she started working on the whale watches and continues to  work for Captain John while also working full-time for WDC. Michelle feels honored and extraordinarily lucky to be able to work with whales and dolphins 7 days/week and is excited to see what the next season of whale watching has to bring!



Naturalist Lindsay Hirt

Lindsay Hirt, a Plymouth, MA native, loves her salty hometown so much that she decided to make a full circle back here to work after about a decade of academic study and field research along both poles of the eastern seaboard.Lindsay is a marine biologist with a focus on wildlife emergency management and a fondness for teaching others about environmental conservation, especially kids! She is trained in wildlife rescue for both land and marine species. Over the course of her career thus far, she has interned, volunteered for, or directly worked with a wide range of conservation groups, including National Marine Life Center, International Fund for Animal Welfare, Whale and Dolphin Conservation, New England Aquarium, and The Goldenrod Foundation.  

The deciding factor of becoming a marine biologist was one Lindsay will never forget – seeing her first whale on a Captain John boat at the age of five years old! She hopes you’ll be just as inspired after an amazing day on the water, watching whales!