Meet the Penikese Island Team

Simon Miner

Executive Director
Penikese Island School

Developing a passion for nature and science at an early age, Simon combines a lifelong commitment to teaching with a clear dedication to environmental stewardship. A published researcher, formerly of Marine Biological Laboratories, Simon has also been a faculty member at the Children’s School of Science for the last 14 years. Keenly aware of the need for scientific literacy and environmental awareness, while teaching at the Children’s School of Science he strove to instill an appreciation for the natural world focusing on educating students in areas such as Embryology, Microbiology, Marine Biology, Marine Ecology, and Robotics. As a dedicated father and life partner, and an avid sailor, Simon enjoys navigating the waters around Cape Cod, and the Elizabeth Islands with his family.

David Kooharian

Overnight Program Director
Penikese Island School

Experienced, trustworthy, fun. These are just a few of the ways coworkers describe this invaluable member of our team. David has a masters in Critical and Creative Thinking from UMass Boston, a bachelor degree in  Arts Administration, from UMass Amherst, and Education Licensure from Bridgewater State. David is a visual art teacher, professional artist, youth group director and leader, recovery counselor and business owner.

Drew Kutcher

Director and Art Instructor
Penikese Island Science + Nature Camps

Drew's involvement with Penikese Island began last summer when she visited for a video project on the island and she has been eager to get more involved ever since. Drew is excited to be spending the summer exploring all the island has to offer through the lens of art! She graduated from Montserrat College of Art in 2017 and is currently teaching art at Plymouth North High School in Plymouth, MA. She is excited to combine her love of art and the natural world and share it with all of the Penikese Island campers!

Madison Kooharian

Director and Science Instructor
Penikese Island Science + Nature Camps

Madison became involved with Penikese as a naturalist, leading day trips on the island for school groups. She grew up visiting Penikese Island and fell in love with the quiet beauty of the island. Currently, Madison attends the University of Massachusetts Boston, pursuing a Bachelor's Degree in Biology with a minor in Chemistry. She recently returned from teaching English to grades 2-12 in Naples, Italy. Madison's goal is to use hands on and explorative learning as methods of engaging children and their imagination in order to foster an enthusiasm for the subject.

Jim Newman

Chairman Emeritus /
Boat Captain

Jim Newman is a Penikese Island School board member, licensed boat captain, and island guide.  Professionally, Jim is an engineer, and he builds underwater vehicles for scientific exploration of the deep ocean.  Jim lives in Woods Hole with his family, a flock of eight hens, and a classic wooden sailboat.

M/V Richard S. Edwards

36’ Coast Guard Inspected 24-Passenger Vessel

A heated, dry cabin with a sturdy build and hull shape make the Edwards a safe and comfortable vessel for all of our trips to Penikese Island.


©2020 by Penikese Island School, Inc.