Berit grew up on the rocky shores of Marblehead, Massachusetts. In the tidal cove behind her family’s home she found horseshoe crabs, eels, and feeding frenzies of fishes and birds. Low tides exposed clam flats, crabs, mussels, and snails. She explored this marine environment through changing tides and seasons, nurturing a love of natural history and marine biology.
While getting her B.Sc. in biology at Bates College, she studied at the University of Oslo, and later immersed herself in coral reef ecology at a remote field station in the Bahamas. An intensive maritime studies program at Mystic Seaport included her first oceanographic research expedition. During college summers she served as a naturalist on whale watching vessels. While the senior educator at the New England Aquarium, she greatly expanded her knowledge of marine and freshwater environments around the world. Those years included caring for stranded seal pups, feeding penguin chicks, and diving on collecting trips. She wanted to get to sea, so left to work as a scientist and to lead educational trips on traditional sailing ships. Voyages focused on marine mammals, marine ecology, oceanographic research, and maritime skills, and they were geared towards college students, adults, teachers, or teenagers. At the University of Massachusetts/Boston, she taught oceanographic research techniques on a research vessel and trained science teachers. At UMass/Boston she also managed a rigorous program to help top students at the city’s poorest high schools prepare for college.
Berit is passionate about science, marine biology, and wilderness. In her free time she races sailboats, hikes, skis, kayaks, and explores the intertidal at every opportunity. She now lives in Stowe, Vermont with her husband, another sailor, who somehow convinced her to move from ocean to mountains.
She has worked with Lindblad Expeditions since 1992 in a variety of places, including Alaska, Baja California, Central America, the British Isles, Norway, and Antarctica.