December 16, 2011
U.S. Geological Survey research ecologist Jill Baron, who earned a master's degree in land resources from the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies in 1979, has been named president-elect of the Ecological Society of America.
"Dr. Baron has shown excellence in both her research and her leadership, and therefore is an outstanding choice to lead the Ecological Society of America," said USGS director Marcia McNutt. "It brings honor to our scientists individually and to the USGS as an agency when our scientists are elected to such prestigious positions."
The USGS and the Department of the Interior have a policy that allows scientists to hold such positions in professional organizations while they continue their important research at the USGS.
As a USGS scientist, Baron has led national efforts to understand the consequences of nitrogen deposition and climate change on mountain ecosystems and identify ways for public lands managers to prepare for and adapt to these changes. She was a member of the Science Strategy Team that now shapes the intellectual direction of the USGS, and is founder and co-director of the John Wesley Powell Center for Earth System Science Analysis and Synthesis. She has been involved in other roles with the ESA since 1991.
Her tenure as ESA president-elect begins in August 2012. The ESA is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization of scientists founded in 1915 to promote ecological science by improving communication among ecologists; raise the public's level of awareness of the importance of ecological science; increase the resources available for the conduct of ecological science; and ensure the appropriate use of ecological science in environmental decision making by enhancing communication between the ecological community and policy-makers.
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