Sarah Aarons

Dr. Sarah Aarons is an earth scientist and assistant professor in San Diego who can speak about the effects of global climate change, the patterns of weather throughout history and decolonizing science. Decolonization efforts are designed to counteract the overrepresentation and dominance of white European values and ideas in numerous disciplines. As an Iñupiaq (Alaska Native) woman born and raised in Alaska, Aarons’s growing awareness of her matrilineal homeland’s struggles with climate change greatly influenced her choice of career. 

She works in the Geosciences Research Division of the Scripps Institute of Oceanography in San Diego where Aarons uses chemistry to determine the origins of soil and sediment generation. She received her bachelor’s degree in Geological and Environmental Science from Stanford University and her master’s degree and PhD in Earth and Environmental Science at the University of Michigan.

Aarons’s personal ties to the subject make her especially qualified to discuss climate change in polar regions and the potential effects of new weather patterns. Aarons is also working to understand how land use today may impact the sediment travels of tomorrow and where nutrients may be redistributed in the future.

Greater attention is being paid to not only the quality of the soil beneath us, but also to the makeup of sediments that travel in the air. Sediments can travel for miles across oceans, revealing information about global weather patterns based on the origins of the soil. 

Aarons received the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development 40 under 40 award and was named a Kavli Fellow by the National Academy of Sciences. She currently serves on the Interagency Arctic Research Policy Committee (IARPC) Diversity and Inclusion Leadership team and is one of less than 60 Native American and Alaska Native individuals with PhDs in Earth science. She has presented her research nationally and internationally. 

Location: San Diego, CA

Expertise Field: 

Climate, decolonizing science, polar regions, dust, ice, tracing weathering and geologic history, using isotope systems in tracing, geochemistry, tracing origins and transport pathways of ancient dust, tracking modern dust sources and nutrient composition

Contact information:

Email: smaarons@ucsd.edu 

Phone: 650-521-5008

Twitter: @SarahAarons

Last updated January 23, 2021

Ernesto Alvarado

Dr. Ernesto Alvarado is a research associate professor of wildland fire sciences in the School of Environmental and Forest Sciences at the University of Washington. He’s an expert on fire ecology and management and can provide insight on the role climate change plays in wildfires and what we should do to better manage forests.

Alvarado’s research focuses on forests in Alaska and the western and southeast United States, in addition to his international work in Brazil, Mexico and Bolivia. 

Topics of study include fire behavior, biomass assessment, combustion modeling, fire ecology, fire management, prescribed fire, fires and climate change, landscape ecology, smoke emissions, and the impacts of smoke on public health.

He’s also looked into traditional fire use and forest management by indigenous communities

At the University of Washington, Alvarado teaches courses on wildland fire management, fire ecology, and the role of culture and place in natural resource stewardship in the Yakama Nation. He also leads graduate seminars on forest dynamics and disturbances and traditional ecological knowledge and fire use. 

Alvarado is also a member of the Fire and Environmental Research Applications Research Team of the U.S. Forest Service Pacific Wildland Fire Sciences Laboratory in Seattle.

Location: Seattle, WA

Expertise Field: Forest fire ecology, wildfires, fire management, prescribed fire, smoke emissions, climate change, forestry

Contact information:

Email: alvarado@uw.edu 

Phone: 206-616-6920

Listen to Ernesto Alvarado on KING5 Seattle:

Last updated August 27, 2020

Angela Anandappa

Angela Anandappa, Ph.D., is the founding executive director of the nonprofit Alliance for Advanced Sanitation, an organization focused on improving food safety. 

Anandappa has researched and worked in food industry safety and genomics for over 20 years. She helped establish the Food Systems Innovation Center at the University of Kentucky with the goal of providing resources for local food businesses. She is also board chair of the Animal Digestible Food Packaging Initiative.

Her research interests focus on improving sanitation in manufacturing plants to mitigate environmental and public health harm. She teaches online classes on food science and risk assessment at Northeastern University in Boston, Mass. 

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Expertise: Food safety, sanitation, genomics, supply chains

Location: Chicago, Ill. 

Contact info: 

Phone: 847-778-0567

Email: angela@sanitationalliance.org

Listen to Angela Anandappa at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln:

 

 

Added April 3, 2020. Last updated January 2021.

Aditi Pai

Aditi Pai is an Associate Professor of Biology at Spelman College. She is an expert on genealogy and evolutionary biology, focusing on sexual selection.

Pai piloted Spelman’s Genetic and Genealogy Program, where students track their genes, their history, and their relatedness to other humans in the world.

In 2018, she was selected for the year-long Governor’s Teaching Fellowship by the Institute of Higher Education at University of Georgia, Athens.

Pai has served as Vice Chair of Biology and is currently co-director of Spelman’s Teaching Resources and Research Center.

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Areas of Expertise: Genealogy, Evolutionary Science, Science Education

Location: Atlanta, GA

Contact Info:

     Email: apai@spelman.edu

     Phone: (404) 270-5778

     Twitter: @AditiPai1

She can be heard here:

Moriba Jah

Moriba Jah is an associate professor of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics at The University of Texas at Austin. He is also the Director of Computational Astronautical Sciences and Technologies (CAST), a group within the Oden Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences as well as the Lead for the Space Security and Safety Program at the Robert Strauss Center for International Security and Law. . Jah’s research focuses on the convergence of policy, technology and security related to space traffic management and space situational awareness.

He has taught undergraduate and graduate courses at UT Austin related to space and astronautical sciences.  During this time at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Jah navigated several missions to Mars. Jah is a Fellow of multiple organizations: TED, American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), American Astronautical Society (AAS), International Association for the Advancement of Space Safety (IAASS), Royal Astronomical Society (RAS), and the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL).

He’s an associate editor of the Elsevier Advances in Space Research journal, and serves on multiple committees: IAA Space Debris, AIAA Astrodynamics, IAF Astrodynamics, and IAF Space Security.

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Areas of Expertise: Space security, space policy, space traffic

Location: Austin, TX

Contact Info:
Email: moriba@utexas.edu
Phone: (512) 471-5322

He can be heard here:

Added August 2018. Last updated January 2021.

César Hidalgo

César A. Hidalgo leads the Collective Learning group at The MIT Media Lab and is an Associate Professor of Media Arts and Sciences at MIT. He is an expert on data visualization, physics, and economics.

Hidalgo’s work focuses on understanding how teams, organizations, cities, and nations learn. At the Collective Learning group, Hidalgo studies collective learning and develops software tools to facilitate learning in organizations.

Hidalgo is the author of Why Information Grows and the co-author of The Atlas of Economic Complexity. He co-founded Datawheel LLC, a company that has professionalized the creation of large data visualization engines.

Cesar

Areas of Expertise: Data visualization, physics, economics

Location: Cambridge, MA

Contact Info:

       Email: cesifoti@gmail.com

       Twitter: @cesifoti

He can be heard here:

Kiho Kim

Kiho Kim is a professor of Environmental Science at American University. His work focuses on how environmental drivers, such as climate change and nutrient pollution, impact coastal ecosystem health. 

At the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis, Kim has examined the origins and spreading of diseases. He has worked with the British Council in promoting international networking for young scientists, and was an advisor to the Coral Disease Working Group of the World Bank.

Kim is a member of the Environmental Literacy Committee of the Office of the State Superintendent of Education, Washington D.C.

He completed two terms as a member of the Ocean Studies Board of the National Academies (USA) and as an officer of the International Society for Reef Studies.

Kiho

Areas of Expertise: Environmental Science, Biology, Marine Conservation

Location: Washington D.C.

Contact:

Email: kiho@american.edu

Phone number: (202) 885-2181

He can be heard here: 

Ada Monzón

Ada Monzón is the Chief Meteorologist for WIPR-TV, WKAQ 580 am and Noticel. Monzón is the first woman in Puerto Rico to be named a fellow of the American Meteorological Society (AMS).

Additionally, she is the Founder and President of EcoExploratorio: Science Museum of Puerto Rico.

Monzón was named 2018 National Weatherperson of the Year by the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes. Monzón is also the recipient of The Department of Commerce Silver Medal and the Joanne Simpson Mentorship Award.

She is a member of the NASA Space Grant Consortium and is an American Meteorological Society Fellow.

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Meteorologist for Univision Radio

Areas of Expertise: Tropical meteorology, natural disasters, physics, hurricanes, tycoon, tropical storm,

Location: Puerto Rico

Contact:

Email: ada.monzon@ecoexploratorio.org

Twitter: @adamonzon

Chanda Prescod-Weinstein

Chanda Prescod-Weinstein is a postdoctoral Research Associate in theoretical physics at the University of Washington, Seattle. She is a particle physicist/cosmologist driven by a desire to understand the origin of spacetime and the particles that populate it. Prescod-Weinstein gives public talks that range from accessible science to the challenges of making scientific communities more inclusive and more reflective of society at large. She is also interested in feminist philosophies of STEM and society studies. She’s given commentary for the Washington Post, Gizmodo, FiveThirtyEight, and Smithsonian.com, to name a few.

chanda prescod weinstein

Areas of Expertise: Astrophysics, early universe cosmology, particle physics, astronomy, dark matter, accessible science, diversity in science, equality in science

Location: Seattle, Washington

Contact info:

Email: chandadeepti@gmail.com

 

She can be heard giving a talk here:

Jay Shendure

Jay Shendure is an associate professor of genome sciences at the University of Washington. He was named the 2006 “Innovator Under 35“ by the MIT technology review. He was also the recipient of the 2012 Curt Stern Award from the American Society of Human Genetics for outstanding scientific achievements in human genetics that have occurred in the last 10 years.

Shendure is revolutionizing his field with new ways to sequence DNA.  He is the principal investigator of the “Shendure lab,” a research group in Seattle that has made significant contributions to technologies in genomics including some of the first applications of exome sequencing to identify the basis of Mendelian disorders and autism spectrum disorders. His team developed the first non-invasive sequencing of a fetal genome, and the haplotype-resolved sequencing of the HeLa genome, which will continue to be crucial in identifying mutations and disorders.

In 2005, he used off-the-shelf parts to determine the order of all the DNA bases in a bacterial genome at 20 times the speed and one-ninth the cost of traditional DNA sequencing. Shendure is now working to make the process even more efficient. By 2015, he says, it may enable biologists to sequence a person’s genome for just $1,000.


Professor of Genome Sciences, University of Washington

Areas of Expertise: Human Genetics and Rare Disorders, Genomics, DNA Sequencing and Technology Development Around DNA Sequencing

Location: Seattle, WA

Contact Information:
Email: shendure@uw.edu
Phone: (206) 685-8543

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