EFI Steering Committee

Call for Nominations for New EFI Steering Committee Members
January 2024

It is time to prepare for elections for the EFI Steering Committee!

Per EFI’s Operating Principles and Procedures, the community will elect two Members for the Steering Committee and an additional two Members will be appointed by the Steering Committee. Elections will end on March 15, 2024.

The Steering Committee is tasked with developing and facilitating a long term vision and plan to advance the broader ecological forecasting community. The Steering Committee facilitates the EFI Strategic Plan and makes high-level decisions to support activities that will build our community of practice. You can nominate yourself or other EFI members for election by emailing info@ecoforecast.org before February 27, 2024.

Anyone who is an EFI Member is allowed to be nominated or self-nominate to run for election. Nominees will be asked to provide a short (<1 page) statement about their goals for EFI and professional qualifications, which the election subcommittee will distribute prior to the elections. Find examples of previous candidate statements in the newsletters from 2023 and 2022.

Steering Committee terms are 2 years with the committee meeting once a month with an extended meeting once a year.

If you are not already a member, you are welcome to join the EFI community in this capacity by filling out this membership form.

See the current Steering Committee members below and find details about their terms and backgrounds in this newsletter. Jason McLachlan, Quinn Thomas, and Jody Peters are ex-officio non-voting members.

Current Steering Committee

Michael Dietze
Boston University

Michael leads the Near-term Ecological Forecasting Initiative and the PEcAn Project. He is the Chair of the EFI Steering Committee and a member of the EFI RCN Steering Committee.

Anna R. Sjodin
Environmental Protection Agency

Anna is interested in forecasting the risk of viral infection and transmission through space and time.  Anna is the Interim Associate Chair for the Steering Committee.

Meghan Beatty
University of Florida

Meghan's interests are in forecasting population dynamics during disturbance events and capturing spatial dependence in forecasts.  Meghan is the EFI Student Association representative on the Steering Committee.

Christopher Brown
University of Maryland

Christopher is interested in developing and transitioning local and regional scale ecological forecasts and systems of the coastal oceans to operations.

Nievita Bueno Watts
Cal Poly Humboldt

Nievita is interested in diversifying the field by providing connections between her Native American, Alaska Native, Native Hawai'ian, Hispanic, and African American students who come from majors in many diverse fields and opportunities for paid internship research and graduate opportunities which may be available throughout the network. 

Istem Fer
Finnish Meteorological Institute

Istem is interested in forecasting terrestrial ecosystems and improving models through statistical methods.

Kira Sullivan-Wiley
The Pew Charitable Trusts

Kira is an environmental social scientist whose work focuses on the drivers underlying environmental decision-making and behavior, and the impacts on people from ecological dynamics.

Glenda Wardle
The University of Sydney

Glenda is passionate about using near-term forecasts to transform the way we do ecology. She collects and models long-term datasets to understand how populations and ecosystems persist and function over multiple temporal and spatial scales. 

Jacob Zwart
U.S. Geological Survey

Jake develops forecasts of aquatic variables using machine learning techniques in support of water management decisions in the U.S.

Jason McLachlan
University of Notre Dame

Jason is using experiments, paleo observations, model prediction, and prior studies in a Bayesian assimilation framework strengthen predictive forecasting of salt marshes. Jason is an ex-officio non-voting member of the EFI Steering Committee and he is on the RCN Steering Committees.

Quinn Thomas
Virginia Tech

Quinn works to predict the future of forest and freshwater ecosystems by combining observations and ecosystem models using statistical techniques. He is the PI of the EFI Research Coordination Network and he is leading the NEON Ecological Forecasting Challenge. Quinn is an ex-officio non-voting member of the EFI Steering Committee. 

Jody Peters
University of Notre Dame

Jody is the Program Manager of EFI. She coordinates EFI activities to promote collaboration and communication both within and outside of EFI. Jody is the secretary for the EFI Steering Committtee.