With doctoral training in cultural and ecological anthropology, I specialize in the human dimensions of environmental governance and conservation. Over the past 15 years, I've held diverse socio-environmental positions in the nonprofit, governmental, and academic, sectors in North and South America (Brazil and Paraguay). These experiences have shaped my professional vision of engaging multiple stakeholders to address socioecological challenges in a collaborative, interdisciplinary, creative, and inclusive manner. I'm currently a 2020 Knauss Marine Policy Fellow serving as a Partnership Specialist with NOAA's National Sea Grant Office and recently completed a PhD in Integrative Conservation and Anthropology from the University of Georgia. My doctoral research explored the socioecological dimensions of small-scale fisheries governance in a marine protected area in Northeastern Brazil. I drew from the social sciences, natural sciences (fish sampling), and visual arts (photography), to understand how environmental governance intersects with considerations of: wellbeing, sustainability, food security, livelihoods, social justice, gender, diverse economies, and knowledge systems. Within the context of research and environmental governance discussions, I highly value the recognition of different "ways of knowing" and world views (i.e. epistemological and ontological pluralism). Fieldwork (2016 - 2017) was collaboratively carried out with support from the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program, local fishing communities, my host university Universidade Estadual do Maranhão, the Brazilian federal conservation agency ICMBio, and a crowdfunded Kickstarter grant.
OF NOTE (AWARDS) 2019. Sea Grant Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship finalist. One year (2020-2021) policy fellowship with executive branch in D.C. 2019. US-IALE Student Volunteer Award. Presented at U.S. International Association for Landscape Ecology symposium. Fort Collins, CO. 2019. Department of Anthropology Travel Support. Presented at US-IALE symposium. Fort Collins, CO. 2019. UGA Graduate School Travel Grant. Presented at Society for Applied Anthropology (SfAA) Annual Meeting. Portland, Oregon. 2019. UGA ICON/Center for Integrative Conservation Travel Grant. Presented at the SfAA Annual Meeting. Portland, OR. 2018. U.S. Borlaug Summer Institute on Global Food Security (summer fellowship). Purdue University, Indiana. 2018. UGA Graduate School Travel Grant. Presented on art-environment-science linkages in dissertation research at Dimensions of Political Ecology Conference. University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY. 2017. Kickstarter (crowdfunded) award for carrying out community photography exhibit to disseminate research results in an inclusive and engaging manner. 2015. Fulbright U.S. Scholar Award for 2016-2017 doctoral research in Brazil. Offered via Bureau of Educational Affairs, U.S. Dept. of State. 2015. Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowship for Intensive Portuguese study in Florianópolis, Brazil. Via UGA’s Latin American & Caribbean Studies Institute and U.S. Department of Education. 2014. Tinker Foundation-UGA Graduate Field Research Award for pre-dissertation research in Brazil. Offered via UGA’s Latin American & Caribbean Studies Institute & Tinker Foundation, Inc. 2014. Innovative & Interdisciplinary Research Grant for pre-dissertation work in Brazil. UGA Graduate School. 2002. University of South Alabama’s Caldwell Scholarship for study abroad. University of Veracruz, Xalapa, México.
2017 KICKSTARTER CAMPAIGN SUCCESSFULLY FUNDED! Thanks to everyone who supported my efforts to do more engaged and inclusive socioecological research that strategically employs the visual arts! With the support of 19 supporters, we were able to raise 637 USD to fund a Kickstarter (crowdfunding) project aimed at disseminating research results to communities in a more inclusive and engaging manner.