Redlands, US: Ocean scientist, geographer and GIS author Dawn J. Wright will join Esri as its chief scientist on October 3, 2011. She will help formulate and advance the intellectual agenda for the environmental, conservation, climate and ocean sciences aspect of Esri’s work while also representing Esri to the national/international scientific community.
“As a scientist, Wright brings a background of rigor that will strengthen our alignment with the requirements of the scientific community,” said Jack Dangermond, Esri president. “In her capacity as chief scientist, she will interface with government, business, industry, and the public and collaborate with them to understand and find solutions for our planet.”
Wright is currently professor of geography and oceanography at Oregon State University and will continue to be affiliated with the university. In 2007, the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education named her US Professor of the Year for the State of Oregon. She is also a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and a new fellow of Stanford University’s Aldo Leopold Leadership Program in science communication.
Wright’s research interests include geographic information science; ocean informatics and cyberinfrastructure; benthic terrain and habitat characterization; and the processing and interpretation of high-resolution bathymetry, video and underwater photographic images. Wright received a PhD in physical geography and marine geology from the University of California, Santa Barbara; an MS in oceanography from Texas A&M; and a BS with honors from Wheaton College in Illinois. She is also certified by the GIS Certification Institute as a GIS professional (GISP).