Jessica Whitehead, North Carolina Sea Grant coastal communities hazards adaptation specialist, has been named to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s new Federal Advisory Committee for the Sustained National Climate Assessment. She will serve a two-year term, ending in spring 2018.

She was nominated by the national Sea Grant Climate Network, a group she chairs, to this committee. 

Whitehead brings experience helping communities, particularly rural coastal communities, understand weather and climate hazards, their vulnerabilities to these hazards, and adaptation options that could increase community resilience. She received her doctoral degree in geography from the Pennsylvania State University. Read more about Whitehead here.

This announcement is shared on behalf of NOAA and is available here

NOAA today announced the appointment of 15 members to the new Advisory Committee for the Sustained National Climate Assessment. The committee will advise NOAA on sustained climate assessment activities and products, including engagement of stakeholders. NOAA will ensure the committee’s advice is provided to the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) for use by the United States Global Change Research Program(USGCRP), a confederation of the research arms of 13 federal departments and agencies, which carry out research and develop and maintain capabilities to support the Nation’s understanding and response to global change. OSTP requested NOAA lead the federal advisory committee.

USGCRP is implementing a sustained National Climate Assessment process to help the Nation prepare for the effects of climate and global environmental change. The sustained process facilitates ongoing and transparent interactions among scientists and stakeholders across regions and sectors. This process enables information and insights to be shared as they emerge and supports the quadrennial National Climate Assessment required by the Global Change Research Act of 1990.

The advisory committee’s members represent diverse viewpoints, interests of geographic regions of the country, and sectors of U.S. society. Members include experts in physical and social sciences, communication, education, and other topics reflecting the full scope of issues relevant to the sustained National Climate Assessment process. Members are appointed by Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA administrator, in consultation with the OSTP Director, Dr. John Holdren.

The members are:

  • Dr. Susan Avery, President Emerita, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
  • Ms. Maxine Burkett, Professor of Law, University of Hawai’i William S. Richardson School of Law
  • Ms. Ann Marie Chischilly, Executive Director, Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals, Northern Arizona University
  • Ms. Jan Dell, Vice President, Strategic Development, AECOM
  • Dr. Riley Dunlap, Regents Professor of Sociology and Dresser Professor, Oklahoma State University
  • Mr. Paul Fleming, Climate Resiliency Group Manager, Seattle Public Utilities
  • Dr. Lucas Joppa, Lead Environmental Scientist, Microsoft Research
  • Dr. Kim Knowlton, Senior Scientist, Science Center Deputy Director, Natural Resources Defense Council, and Assistant Clinical Professor, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University
  • Dr. Maria Carmen Lemos, Professor of Natural Resources and Environment, University of Michigan
  • Dr. Jerry Melillo, Distinguished Scientist and Director Emeritus, The Ecosystems Center, Marine Biological Laboratory
  • Dr. Richard Moss, Senior Scientist, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory’s Joint Global Change Research Institute at the University of Maryland
  • Ms. Kristen Poppleton, Director of Education, Climate Generation: A Will Steger Legacy
  • Dr. Michael Prather, Professor of Earth System Science, University of California, Irvine
  • Dr. Jessica Whitehead, Coastal Communities Hazards Adaptation Specialist, North Carolina Sea Grant
  • Mr. Daniel Zarrilli, Senior Director, Climate Policy and Programs, and Chief Resilience Officer, New York City Office of the Mayor

Dr. Richard Moss will serve as chair of the committee, and Jan Dell will serve as vice chair. More details will be posted in an upcoming Federal Register Notice and the Advisory Committee for the Sustained National Climate Assessment’s website.


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