People

Founded in 2017, Beam Reach as a Washington social purpose corporation has a proven track record of innovating with technology to help save the orcas and promote marine sustainability. We’re a “family business” made up of Dr. Scott Veirs and his father, Dr. Val Veirs.


Scott is trained as an environmental scientist (B.S., Stanford Earth Systems, 1992) and an oceanographer (PhD., University of Washington, 2003). In addition to his research, teaching, and coordination of the Orcasound hydrophone Network & open-source project, Scott serves as Chair of the Marine Mammal Work Group within the Puget Sound Ecosystem Monitoring Program (PSEMP). He is based in Seattle, just north of UW main campus.

Val is a retired physicist who taught at Colorado College for 3 decades where he pioneered their environmental science program. He and his wife Leslie host a live hydrophone (& other team Reach experiments!) from their home on the west side of San Juan Island, aka “Orcasound Lab.”

From 2002-2012, Scott and Val taught under/graduates about marine environmental problems and killer whale bioacoustics through the Beam Reach marine science and sustainability school. During that period, Beam Reach was a 501(c)3 non-profit that enabled 50 students to earn UW credit while taking classes at the Friday Harbor Labs and conducting their own research projects aboard the Gato Verde electric-sailing catamaran. That decade deepened our professional network in the marine conservation community, including teaching with amazing educators like Dr. Jason Wood and Captain Todd Shuster.