Professor Alford is a seagoing physical oceanographer, the Associate Director of the Marine Physical Laboratory and co-founder of the Multiscale Ocean Dynamics group at SIO/UCSD. He develops and employs specialized instruments to better describe and understand processes that occur on scales, say, < 10 km; however, he is also interested in how these affect both coastal processes and the larger-scale circulation.
Professor Alford received a BA in Astrophysics at Swarthmore College in 1993 and PhD in 1998 from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. In 2002 he received the Office of Naval Research's prestigious Young Investigator Program (YIP) Award, and in 2009 received the University of Washington College of Fishery and Ocean Sciences' Distinguished Research Award.
He has over 80 refereed publications in top-tier journals including Nature and Journal of Physical Oceanography, and has led many ambitious experiments funded by the Office of Naval Research and the National Science Foundation.
In 2018 he created and chaired the first Gordon Conference on Ocean Mixing.