MEDIA ADVISORY: Ecological experts available during COP27 for comment on climate change and biodiversity

November 4, 2022
For immediate release

Contact: Heidi Swanson, 202-833-8773 ext. 211, gro.asenull@idieh  

Ahead of the 27th Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC (COP27), in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, ESA has compiled a list of ecologists and biologists to provide technical expertise to the media about climate change and biodiversity.

Experts are available to comment before, during, and after the conference. For assistance in connecting with subject-matter experts, contact Public Information Manager Heidi Swanson at gro.asenull@idieh.


Ecological experts available for comment


Pacific Time (UTC -8/-7)


Mark H. Carr
Professor, University of California, Santa Cruz, Dept of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Contact: ude.cscunull@rrachm | 831-246-3524 | Pacific Time (UTC -8/-7)

Carr is a marine ecologist who studies kelp forest ecosystems along the coast of North America. He also studies the design of marine protected area (MPA) networks as conservation tools. He studies how both of these fields intersect with climate change. He advises state, federal and international organizations on these topics.

Expertise: Kelp forest ecology and climate impacts; marine protected areas and climate


Kyla M. Dahlin
Associate Professor, Michigan State University
Contact: ude.usmnull@nilhadk | 415-238-1916 | Pacific Time (UTC -8/-7)

Dahlin is an ecosystem ecologist who uses remote sensing, GIS and Earth system modeling to better understand how plant diversity influences ecosystem function across scales. She is an associate professor in the Department of Geography, Environment, and Spatial Sciences at Michigan State University and is also an affiliated faculty member in the interdisciplinary program in Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior (EEB), the Environmental Science and Policy Program (ESPP) and AgBioResearch.

Expertise: ecological remote sensing, Earth system modeling, ecosystem ecology


Daniel Gluesenkamp
Executive Director, California Institute for Biodiversity
Contact: gro.evilalacnull@leinad | 415-939-6681 | Pacific Time (UTC -8/-7)

Gluesenkamp helped Governor Brown establish the State of California’s ambitious California Biodiversity Initiative and launched ambitious initiatives to secure seeds of all California rare plants and specimens of all California biodiversity. In 2009, Dan discovered a presumed extinct Franciscan manzanita plant growing on a traffic island at the Golden Gate Bridge. Dan works to save the rare species and special wild places that make California a globally significant biodiversity hotspot. He earned his Ph.D. at the University of California, Berkeley, has led several impactful conservation organizations and currently oversees a multimillion dollar portfolio of ambitious biodiversity programs for the California institute for Biodiversity.

Expertise: Pollinators, biodiversity, collections, DNA barcoding, plants, insects, fungi and soil biodiversity


Patrick Gonzalez
Climate change scientist, University of California, Berkeley
Contact: ude.yelekrebnull@zelaznogkcirtap | 510-643-9725 | Pacific Time (UTC -8/-7)

Gonzalez is a forest ecologist, conducting research on wildfire, tree mortality and other issues. He has served as Principal Climate Change Scientist of the U.S. National Park Service and as Assistant Director for Climate and Biodiversity of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and he is a lead author on four reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

Expertise: climate change, forest ecology, wildfire, tree mortality, biodiversity conservation, carbon


Karen D. Holl
Professor, University of California, Santa Cruz
Contact: ude.cscunull@llohk | 831-428-4715 | Pacific Time (UTC -8/-7)

Holl is a community ecologist who studies how to restore terrestrial ecosystems. She studies restoration of rain forests in Latin America and chaparral, grassland and riparian systems in California. She advises numerous government, non-profit and business groups in California and internationally on ecological restoration efforts and, in particular, on how to improve the outcomes of the numerous massive tree planting efforts aimed at offsetting carbon emissions.

Expertise: forest and grassland restoration


Robert B. Jackson
Professor of Environment and Energy, Stanford University
Contact: ude.drofnatsnull@noskcaj.bor | 919-599-0310 | Pacific Time (UTC -8/-7)

Jackson examines the many ways people affect the Earth. He uses basic scientific knowledge to reduce the environmental footprint of global warming, energy extraction and more and to help shape policies. He’s currently tracking methane and other greenhouse gas emissions and the effects of climate change and droughts on forest mortality and grasslands.

Expertise: terrestrial ecology, forests, grasslands, energy technologies


Kat Superfisky
Urban Ecologist, City of Los Angeles
Contact: moc.liamgnull@yksifrepus | 248-890-6409 | Pacific Time (UTC -8/-7)

Superfisky is an expert in developing socio-ecological systems to address environmental challenges and manage ecosystems in urban areas. Their work focuses on maintaining and enhancing biodiversity and wildlife connectivity in highly developed contexts, such as cities like Los Angeles, California.

Expertise: urban ecosystem management; socio-ecological systems; urban biodiversity and wildlife connectivity


Xiaoshan Wang
Ph.D. candidate, University of California, Berkeley
Contact: ude.yelekrebnull@sxgnaw, 510-570-0729 | Pacific Time (UTC -8/-7)
Wang is an expert in conservation planning and biodiversity conservation. She simulates how global change affects animals’ distribution and maps future climate change refugia for protected area expansion.

Expertise: biodiversity conservation, conservation planning


Mountain Time (UTC -7/-6)


Gillian Bowser  
Associate Professor, Colorado State University
Contact: ude.etatsolocnull@reswobg | 202-425-0639 | Mountain Time (UTC -7/-6)

Bowser is an expert in ecosystem science and adaptation-based strategies including nature-based solutions. She is an expert on the COP processes, having attending the COP for over a decade, and is an active participant in the Research and Independent Non-Governmental Organizations (RINGO) constituency to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Expertise: youth at the COP, adaptation and ecosystem services


Jacob J. Bukoski
Postdoctoral Associate / Assistant Professor, Conservation International / Oregon State University College of Forestry
ude.etatsnogeronull@iksokub.bocaj | 919-370-8267 | Mountain Time (UTC -7/-6)

Bukoski is an expert in climate change mitigation and biodiversity conservation in forested socio-environmental systems. He studies how management, conservation and restoration of forests globally can combat the twin crises of climate change and biodiversity loss. He is currently a scientist at Conservation International, but will soon be joining Oregon State University’s College of Forestry to start a research group focused on forest-based climate solutions.

Expertise: Forest and climate change, natural climate solutions; biodiversity conservation; mangroves; blue carbon


Benjamin P. Gerstner
Ph.D. candidate, University of New Mexico
Contact: moc.liamgnull@rentsreg.p.nimajneb | 315-741-6130 | Mountain Time (UTC -7/-6)

Gerstner is an expert in mechanisms of coexistence in polyploid plant populations. They examine different processes that allow for the maintenance of plant populations and how genetic diversity is maintained. They have experience in modeling, examining theoretical assumptions and collecting empirical data in the deserts of the American southwest.

Expertise: plant biology, population genetics, polyploidy


Anthony J. Giordano
Founder & Chief Conservation Officer, S.P.E.C.I.E.S.
Contact: moc.liamtohnull@1seiceps | 516-982-6554 | Mountain Time (UTC -7/-6)

Giordano is an expert in carnivore ecology, human-wildlife conflict and the practice of evidence-based conservation. He assesses the population status of endangered species and uses camera traps, spatial modeling frameworks and other tools to understand the impact people have on these species’ viability, movements and behavior.

Expertise: Wildlife (vertebrate) ecology, tropical ecology, carnivore biology, endangered species recovery, population dynamics, occupancy modeling, density estimation, camera trapping, conservation practice, human-wildlife conflict and coexistence, socioecology/human dimensions, predator-prey relationships, habitat corridors and connectivity, noninvasive genetic sampling, impacts of climate change/ anthropogenic impacts on biodiversity


Dennis S. Ojima
Senior Research Scientist, Colorado State University
Contact: ude.etatsolocnull@amijo.sinned | 970-481-1231 | Mountain Time (UTC -7/-6)

Ojima is an expert in ecosystem science dealing with land use and climate changes on ecosystem processes, such as carbon uptake and release, nitrogen dynamics and disturbance regimes. He also works on climate mitigation actions and adaptation strategies for dry land social-ecological systems.

Expertise: Climate change, ecosystem science, adaptation science


Steven Mana’oakamai Johnson
Provosts Faculty Fellow / Incoming Assistant Professor, Cornell University
Contact: ude.llenrocnull@542jms | 541-745-9881 | Mountain Standard Time (UTC -7)

Mana‘oakamai Johnson (he/him/‘oia) is a Kanaka Maoli (Native Hawaiian) scientist, born and raised on the island of Saipan, located in Micronesia. His research focuses on the impacts of climate change on coastal social-ecological systems, primarily in the Pacific Islands. He uses social, environmental, and climate data to develop equitable and cooperative solutions for coastal communities. He is an expert in coral reef ecology, marine protected areas, and climate change.

Expertise: Coral reefs


Denielle M. Perry
Assistant Professor, Northern Arizona University
Contact: ude.uannull@yrrep.elleined | 775-384-7313 | Mountain Standard Time (UTC -7)

Perry obtained her Ph.D. in Geography at the University of Oregon. She is a water resource geographer and director of the Free-flowing Rivers Lab in the School of Earth and Sustainability at Northern Arizona University. Her research largely focuses on policies that influence both the development and protection of riverine resources. She is particularly interested in how conservation policies can be used as climate adaptation policy as well as for re-Indigenizing water governance. She conducts fieldwork across the Americas, Europe and Asia, and serves as co-chair of the international Durable River Protections Coalition. She has published and produced scientific papers, book chapters, films, datasets and policy resolutions on river conservation, impacts of development on riverine ecosystems and water resource governance broadly.

Expertise: Freshwater biodiversity conservation, free-flowing river conservation, Amazon Basin, Indigenous knowledge in freshwater conservation, hydropower


Central Time (UTC -6/-5)


Deborah J. January-Bevers
President & CEO, Houston Wilderness
Contact: gro.ssenredliwnotsuohnull@harobed, 713-524-7330 | Central Time (UTC -6/-5)

Deborah is an expert in ecosystem services, large-scale native tree plantings and riverine ecosystem restoration. She currently collaborates on the 8-county Gulf-Houston Regional Conservation Plan with 3 key goals for environmental resiliency, the 25-mile Houston Ship Channel TREES Program targeting 1 million new native trees on riparian corridors along the Houston Ship Channel by 2030, and the Riverine Targeted-Use-of-Buyouts Program for major green stormwater infrastructure implementation. She is lead author on Houston Wilderness’ Ecosystem Services Primer, 2nd Edition, and co-author of the journal paper: A Tree Planting Framework to Improve Climate, Air Pollution, Health, and Urban Heat in Vulnerable Locations Using Non-Traditional Partners (Plants, People, Planet, 2021).

Expertise: ecosystem services for 10 ecoregion areas in 15-county Greater Gulf-Houston Region; organic soil qualities of vertisols and alfisols; and large-scale native tree plantings for riverine reforestation


Joseph Gazing Wolf
Senior Global Futures Scientist, Arizona State University
Contact: ude.usanull@1flowgj | 6264082306 | Central Time (UTC -6/-5)

Gazing Wolf is a Hunkpapa Lakota bison rancher, with mixed-race Amazigh/Nubian heritage from Upper Egypt. His life’s work is located at the interface of Indigenous lifeways and existential dignity. His scholarship and activism are framed by a vision of universal dignity, with a focus on how Indigenous ecological theory and cultural practice impacts social-ecological systems, food systems and education.

Expertise: Indigenous knowledges; Traditional Ecological Knowledges; Indigenous ecological theory/practice; prairie ecology; bison restoration; prescribed fire


Jake J. Grossman
Assistant Professor, St. Olaf College
Contact: ude.falotsnull@6mssorg | 602-214-8688 | Central Time (UTC -6/-5)

Grossman studies the consequences of climate change and biodiversity loss for temperate North American forests. His group uses a model clade approach to forecast the climate change vulnerability of woody plants – including maples, hollies, and magnolias – and the extent to which loss of plant diversity will change forest resilience. He is an assistant professor of biology and environmental studies at St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN.

Expertise: climate change ecology, biodiversity and ecosystem functioning


Jessica J. Hellmann
Executive Director, Institute on the Environment; Professor, Department of Ecology, Evolution & Behavior, University of Minnesota
Contact: ude.nmunull@nnamlleh | 574-360-6205 | Central Time (UTC -6/-5)

Hellmann’s research examines the impacts of climate change on natural and human systems, greenhouse gas emission reduction and climate adaptation. She was among the first to propose and study techniques to reduce climate impacts on species and ecosystems through ecosystem management. She currently leads the Climate Adaptation Science Center for the U.S. Midwest in addition to an academic institute committed to interdisciplinary research, translation and education that advances sustainability.

Expertise: Climate impacts, endangered species, natural capital, nature-based solutions, adaptation, methane emissions, GHG analytics


Maowei Liang
Research Scientist, University of Minnesota
Contact: moc.liamgnull@oce.gnailwm, 952-245-9330 | Central Time (UTC -6/-5)
Maowei has a diverse range of skills and interests in biodiversity and climate change. He has explored topics such as the impacts of climate change on biodiversity, plant phenology and primary productivity; the effects of interactions between large herbivores and climate change on biodiversity; and how changes in plant diversity influence ecosystem productivity and stability.

Expertise: Biodiversity, climate change, grasslands


Richard L. Lindroth
Vilas Distinguished Achievement Professor of Ecology, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Contact: ude.csiwnull@htordniL.drahciR | 608-886-2999 | Central Time (UTC -6/-5)

Lindroth is a Vilas Distinguished Achievement professor of ecology and recent associate dean for research at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. His research focuses on the consequences of global environmental change for ecological interactions, especially between plants and plant-feeding animals. He also teaches and speaks on science denialism and science communication. Lindroth has been a Fulbright fellow and is an elected fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the Ecological Society of America, and the Entomological Society of America. Funded by grants from the National Science Foundation, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and other agencies, Lindroth and his research group have published nearly 250 journal articles and book chapters.

Expertise: Climate change ecology, plant-insect interactions, science denialism and science communication


Risper B. Nyairo
Postdoctoral Scholar, University of WisconsinPlatteville
Contact: ude.ttalpwunull@roriayn | 608-342-1363 | Central Time (UTC -6/-5)

Risper is an expert in global change ecology. She examines how land-use change, coupled with climate change, affects distribution of species and their ecosystem function, using remotely sensed data, field observations and computer modeling.

Expertise: Ecological niche modeling


Dan Salas
Senior Ecologist, CSE, Stantec
Contact: moc.cetnatsnull@salas.nad | 608-469-0885 | Central Time (UTC -6/-5)

Dan is known as a problem solver and planner. He believes in the power of collaboration to address challenges by finding mutual goals and building strong relationships. He is recognized as an industry leader in applied ecology of vegetation management, pollinator conservation and biodiversity planning.

Expertise: Conservation planning, decision analysis, terrestrial ecosystems, pollinators, endangered species


Shari L. Wilson
Teaching Ecologist, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point
Contact: moc.liamgnull@15aelirahs | Central Time (UTC -6/-5)
Wilson is a teaching ecologist working with K-16 teachers and students. She explores how educators and ecologists internationally address the issues of climate change, biodiversity, water resources and other ecological issues, and how they impact cultural resilience.

Expertise: Sustainability education, biodiversity, climate change


Eastern Time (UTC -5/-4)


Linda A. Auker
Assistant Professor of Biology, Program Director of Environmental Studies, Misericordia University
Contact: moc.liamgnull@rekua.adnil | 570-674-6359 | Eastern Time (UTC -5/-4)

Auker is an expert in marine bioinvasions and community ecology. She examines how invasive species impact native species physiology, and how the presence of invaders impacts community structure. She uses experiments, observational studies, spatial analyses and meta-analyses to complete her work.

Expertise: Invasive species, marine ecology


Erle C. Ellis
Professor, University of Maryland
Contact: ude.cbmunull@ece | 410-350-6843 | Eastern Time (UTC -5/-4)

Ellis is a professor of geography and environmental systems at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC). His research investigates the ecology of human landscapes towards sustainable stewardship of the Anthropocene biosphere. He teaches environmental science and landscape ecology at UMBC and has taught landscape ecology at Harvard’s Graduate School of Design. He is a lead author of the IPBES Transformative Change Assessment, member of the Anthropocene Working Group of the International Commission on Stratigraphy, a fellow of the Global Land Programme and a senior fellow of the Breakthrough Institute. His first book, Anthropocene: A Very Short Introduction, was published in 2018.

Expertise: Global ecology, landscape ecology, human ecology, anthropocene


Ezekiel Kyinli
University of Camerino
Contact: moc.liamgnull@ilniykE | 347-272-3606 | Eastern Time (UTC -5/-4)

Kyinli’s research focuses on managing species and habitats to protect the ecosystem and provide sustainable cultural, subsistence, recreational and commercial use in a changing climate.

Expertise: Biodiversity and ecosystem management


Karen R. Lips
Professor of Biology, University of Maryland
Contact: ude.dmunull@spilk | 240-393-5397 | Eastern Time (UTC -5/-4)

Lips is an expert in animal ecology, especially tropical amphibians, and the effects of global change (e.g., climate, disease, land use) on animal populations and communities and how they affect ecosystems. She is broadly interested in biodiversity, international science and policy.

Expertise: Biodiversity, tropical biology, amphibians, global change, disease, policy, conservation


Timon McPhearson
Professor and Director, Urban Systems Lab, The New School and Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies
Contact: ude.loohcswennull@nosraehpcm.nomit | 646-825-0057 | Eastern Time (UTC -5/-4)

McPhearson is an expert in urban ecology. He studies the ecology in, of and for cities to advance more resilient, sustainable and equitable cities with a focus on nature-based solutions for urban climate change adaptation.

Expertise: urban ecology, climate adaptation, resilience, nature-based solutions


Donald B. Miles
Professor, Ohio University
Contact: ude.oihonull@dselim | 740-707-0325 | Eastern Time (UTC -5/-4)

Miles is an expert in ecological physiology and population ecology. He has studied the physiological responses of ectotherm species to climate change. He also has developed models that use ground-truthed ecological and physiological data to predict species extinctions.

Expertise: Ecological physiology, global climate change, evolutionary ecology


Shahid Naeem
Professor of Ecology, Columbia University
Contact: ude.aibmulocnull@1212ns | 212-854-4499 | Eastern Time (UTC -5/-4)

Naeem is an expert in the ecological and environmental consequences of biodiversity loss in ecosystems. Whether these consequences are mass extinction or simply loss of native species from local habitats, ecosystem functions and the services they provide (such as breathable air, potable water, fertile soils, or productive fisheries) are becoming less efficient and more unstable. Naeem and his lab-group work on plants, animals and microorganisms in terrestrial, freshwater and marine systems, including managed systems (e.g., farms) and un-managed systems (e.g., forests and Arctic tundra). Naeem is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Ecological Society of America and the Aldo Leopold Leadership program.

Expertise: Biodiversity loss, global change, ecosystem functions and services


Stuart Pimm
Doris Duke Chair of Conservation, Duke University
Contact: moc.emnull@mmiptrauts | 646-489-5481 | Eastern Time (UTC -5/-4)

Pimm is an expert on species extinctions and how to prevent them. His work defined the benchmark description of biodiversity – as a rate 1000 times higher than expected. In addition to his university position he directs a non-profit, Saving Nature, that works with local NGOs to restore habitat connectivity in biodiversity hotspots.

Expertise: Conservation


Pamela H. Templer
Professor and Chair, Boston University
Contact: ude.ubnull@relpmetp | 617-272-0100 | Eastern Time (UTC -5/-4)

Templer is professor and chair of the Department of Biology at Boston University. She is also director of the Boston University URBAN Graduate Program, co-director of the Boston University Stable Isotope Laboratory, and a fellow of the Ecological Society of America. She received her Ph.D. from Cornell University and completed her postdoctoral fellowship at the University of California, Berkeley. She has published over 100 papers on a wide range of topics, including the effects of climate and air quality on biogeochemical cycling of nitrogen, carbon and water in forest ecosystems. She is particularly interested in the feedbacks between climate change, air pollution and urbanization on the functioning and health of forest ecosystems and how these in turn affect climate and human health. She also pursues projects that integrate across environmental science and policy through a collaborative approach with governments, non-governmental organizations and the private sector.

Expertise: Climate change, forest ecology, urban ecology, biogeochemistry, atmospheric deposition


Judith S. Weis
Professor Emerita, Rutgers University
Contact: ude.sregtur.krawennull@siewj | 212-874-4598 | Eastern Time (UTC-5/-4)

Weis is professor emerita of biological sciences at Rutgers University, Newark. Her research focuses on estuarine ecology and ecotoxicology, and she has published over 250 refereed scientific papers, a technical book on marine pollution, and several books for the general public, including one on marine pollution. Her interests are in stresses in estuaries and salt marshes and their effects on organisms, populations and communities. She is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), was a congressional science fellow with the U.S Senate, and has been a Fulbright Senior Specialist (Indonesia). She has been on advisory committees for USEPA and the National Research Council. She served on the National Sea Grant Advisory Board and chaired the Science Advisory Board of the NJ Department of Environmental Protection. She served the United Nations Environment Program as a lead author of the World Ocean Assessments I and II, and as an author of the Intergovernmental Panel on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services. She was chair of the biology Section of AAAS and served on boards for the Association for Women in Science and for the American Institute of Biological Sciences, of which she was president in 2001. She received the Merit Award from the Society of Wetland Scientists.

Expertise: coastal/estuarine ecology, salt marshes


Central European Time (UTC +1)


Giorgio Vacchiano
Associate Professor, University of Milan
Contact: moc.liamgnull@onaihccavg | +393296497188 | Central European Time (UTC +1)

Vacchiano is an expert in the functioning and management of forests. He looks at how to make forests less vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, and how to increase their contribution in absorbing greenhouse gases, including restoring degraded forests, managing existing ones and planting new trees.

Expertise: Forest ecology and management, forest fires, forest carbon, wood energy




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