CCAC September 1st 2016 Meeting – Karen Randall

September 1st 2016 Speaker Karen Randall – Bio

Randall Familyr portrait shoot


Karen Randall grew up with aquariums as a child.  While experienced in many facets of the aquarium hobby, as an adult her focus turned to a concentration in planted display aquariums and the study and propagation of aquatic plants.  Her articles and photography have been published in six languages in 9 countries.  For many years she authored the monthly column, “Sunken Gardens” in Aquarium Fish Magazine. She is an international speaker on aquarium subjects.


Karen is past president of the Boston Aquarium Society, and serves on the board of the Aquatic Gardeners Association.  She was editor of the AGA magazine, The Aquatic Gardener for 5 years and is now technical editor of the magazine.  She has served as a judge for both the AGA Aquascaping Contest and the Aqua Design Amano International Aquatic Plants Layout Contest since their inception.   She has had the pleasure to serve as a speaker and jury member for the prestigious live international contest, “The Art of the Planted Aquarium” held in Hannover, Germany and for Aquatic Experience in the U.S.  She has also served as a consultant on several major projects at public aquaria.


Karen travels frequently to study aquatic plants in the wild.  She has traveled extensively in South and Central America and South East Asia as well as the southern parts of the U.S.  In Brazil she has assisted with Project Piaba, a conservation program in the Amazon centered on the aquarium fish trade.  She regularly does programs on these topics as well as aquatic gardening for groups ranging from aquarium clubs, school children, garden clubs and church organizations.


She is currently working on a book for Timber Press titled, Sunken Gardens, a Guide to the Planted Aquarium due out in early 2016.


Karen started a program a number of years ago to put aquariums in many classrooms in the local public elementary schools.  In 2003 she was awarded the Northeast Council of Aquarium Society’s Betty Mueller Award; a life-time award for her outreach work and other contributions to the aquarium hobby.


In her spare time, Karen maintains a number of perennial gardens on her small horse farm, and trains and shows her dogs.