Proteus Fellows

Tamara Enz, 2019 Writing Fellow

Image Credit: Barbara Crawford

Tamara is a writer, photographer, and biologist with an eye for wild landscapes and intimate details. She believes science is only as good as it is accessible and wants everyone to grasp the beauty of the intricate ecological connections that surround us. To that end, she aspires to create images of the world, both written and photographic, that draw people into the untrammeled spaces, where she hopes they leave tiny pieces of their hearts.

A hardened introvert, Tamara has traveled to five continents and lived on an island in the Arctic Ocean alone for three months. With varying measures of success, she has pursued rare plants in common places, elusive birds in uncommon places, and lynx in hopeful habitats. 

Formally trained in Japanese, biology, and culinary arts she is currently attempting German, city life, and, yes, yes, she likes to cook. But really, she prefers to eat.

Autumn Straitiff, 2019 Student Writer

Autumn is a high school junior with a passion for science. From robotics to the physics of musical instruments to assistive technology, she believes deeply in sharing her enthusiasm for all things scientific. She was drawn to Proteus by a desire to preserve the ocean for future generations and a wish to develop science communication and writing skills.
A repeat participant in Intel’s International Science and Engineering Fair, Autumn has received two National Women in Computing and Information Technology awards. In her spare time, she has built keyboards, practiced soldering and technical skills and enjoys studying the flute.


Malea Saul, 2018 Writing Fellow


Malea Saul is a curious scientist, filmmaker, and lover of sacoglossa (underwater sap-sucking slugs!).

With a lifelong love for the outdoors, fostered through backpacking trips and snow days in the Idaho mountains, it was a “no duh” moment when she took a deep breath on the bow of R/V Thomas G. Thompson and noticed that the air at sea brought the same calm as the mountain air. She felt an instantaneous feeling of home.

Malea was inspired by life aboard the research ship – with around-the-clock work, data collection, passionate scientists and crew, and endless visuals of an almost alien landscape of the deep sea. It was as if the stories of the ocean—it’s vastness, the creatures, and potential for scientific discoveries—beckoned to her.

She received a bachelor’s degree in oceanography at the University of Washington in 2017 and has been working for place-based environmental education programs in Hawaii. She’s also dedicated time to travelling and developing her film portfolio. The Proteus Writing Fellowship offered the chance to continue her pursuit of learning with a focus on storytelling and environmental education.