The official website of the Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council

Council Staff - Matt Love

Matt Love
Restoration Ecologist


Matt Love serves as a Restoration Ecologist for the Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council (Council). Created by the RESTORE Act of 2012 and comprised of the Governors of the five Gulf Coast States and Cabinet-level officials from six federal agencies, the Council is responsible for restoring and protecting the natural resources, ecosystems, fisheries, marine and wildlife habitats, beaches, coastal wetlands, and economy of the Gulf Coast. 

Prior to his tenure with the RESTORE Council, Love has held positions in state government, academic institutions, non-governmental organizations, and as a private contractor with a focus on ecosystem restoration. He previously worked with Ocean Conservancy in the Gulf of Mexico Restoration Program advocating for science and monitoring support to promote the recovery and restoration of the Gulf of Mexico. This work involved the development of a Marine and Coastal Ecosystem Atlas for the Gulf, an assessment of long-term scientific monitoring in place to help track recovery from the oil spill, and a study of adaptive management principles from large-scale ecosystem restoration programs across the United States to promote the benefits of adjusting restoration approaches as effects of restoration are tracked and assessed.

Love previously worked in the state of Florida for NOAA’s National Estuarine Research Reserve system at the Guana Tolomato Matanzas NERR as the ecosystem science coordinator. This work involved endangered species management, coastal habitat restoration, implementing prescribed fire management and watershed modeling to protect the estuarine environment of the NERR. Before joining the NERR he worked on the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Program through the South Florida Water Management District. This role was focused on tracking the effects of restoration efforts by mapping the natural communities of the Greater Everglades ecosystem to determine progress in attaining the restoration goals set by the multi-agency program.

Love began his career in restoration working to assess the effects of coastal dune restoration techniques on the population status of the endangered Alabama Beach mouse at the Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge. This applied research project evaluated the restoration impacts on the vegetation productivity for the critical habitat of this species.

Love holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Marine Biology from Auburn University and a Master of Science in Biology from the University of Central Florida. He is a native of coastal Alabama and currently lives in Fairhope, AL. He enjoys the outdoors, including wilderness backpacking, canoeing, cycling, bike touring, and competing in cyclocross races throughout the Gulf coast region.