Recent Transitions at CIRC

Changes are afoot at CIRC. August brought several transitions for our team. Denise Lach, one of CIRC’s long-time leaders, became Professor Emerita at Oregon State University. After years of pioneering strategies for community-engaged science, her retirement is well deserved, and we hope that she is catching lots of big fish. In August, we also said goodbye to Nathan Gilles, editor of the CIRCulator and our resident science communicator. Nathan’s knowledge and creativity made the CIRCulator a successful publication, and he will be missed. 

Our autumn transitions also included new CIRC leads, Peter Ruggiero and Erica Fleishman. Peter has been part of CIRC for nearly a decade. An expert in the coastal hazards faced by Oregon and Washington, he led both the Envision Tillamook Coastal Futures and Grays Harbor Coastal Futures projects, which engaged coastal community members in the exploration of a range of alternative futures that enabled them to imagine the many choices and paths their communities could take under climate change, sea-level rise, and the gamut of adaptation scenarios.

Erica joined Oregon State University in March as Director of the Oregon Climate Change Research Institute (OCCRI). Her research focuses on ecosystem, community, and population-level responses to climate and land-use change, and she brings considerable scientific and practical experience from the Intermountain West, California, and Rocky Mountains.

In October, CIRC also welcomed Meg Mills-Novoa as our new program manager and outreach coordinator. Meg is completing her Ph.D. in Geography at University of Arizona and plans to submit her dissertation before the spring issue of the CIRCulator is published. She has worked on community-based adaptation for over a decade and is excited to collaborate with diverse stakeholders across the Northwest on science-to-action initiatives.

Peter, Erica, Meg, and a network of scientific and community partners have begun to envision CIRC’s emphasis and impact over the next five years. Stay tuned, and please stay in touch.


Featured Image: Wheat and canola crops planted at the Washington State University Cook Agronomy Farm near Pullman, Washington. (Gabrielle Roesch-McNally, all rights reserved).


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