2015 Smith Fellows Announced

SCB and the Cedar Tree Foundation are pleased to announce the recipients of the 2015 David H. Smith Conservation Research Fellowship. 

The Smith Fellowship, the nation's premier postdoctoral program in conservation science, seeks to find solutions to the most pressing conservation challenges in the United States.  Each Fellow’s research is conducted in partnership with a major academic institution and an “on the ground” conservation organization to help bridge the gap between theory and application.
2015 Smith Fellows (l to r) Sean Anderson, Brian Harvey, Brent Hughes, Mariah Meek, & Rebecca Tonietto
Emerging from an impressive pool of Ph.D. applicants from around the world are five outstanding scientists who comprise the David H. Smith Conservation Research Fellowship class of 2015:
  • Sean Anderson will complete a project titled, “Forecasting catastrophes in marine population dynamics” under the academic mentorship of Dr. Trevor Branch at University of Washington and in partnership with Drs. Eric Ward and Michelle McClure at NOAA and Drs. Paul Dye and Jodie Toft at The Nature Conservancy.
  • Brian Harvey will complete a project titled, “Managing for resistance and resilience during a period of accelerating tree mortality in Rocky Mountain subalpine forests” under the academic mentorship of Dr. Thomas Veblen at University of Colorado and in partnership with Drs. José F. Negrón and Mike Battaglia at USDA Forest Service
  • Brent Hughes will complete a project titled, “Can sea otters help defend and restore our coastlines?” under the academic mentorship of Dr. Brian Silliman at Duke University, Dr. Susan Williams at University of Calfornia, Davis and Dr. M. Tim Tinker at USGS and in partnership with Dr. Lilian Carswell of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Dr. Mike Beck of The Nature Conservancy.
  • Mariah Meek will complete a project titled, “Conserving fish species by understanding local adaptation and predicting responses to climate change” under the academic mentorship of Drs. Clifford Kraft and Matt Hare at Cornell University and working in partnership with Dr. Nathaniel Gillespie of USDA Forest Service.
  • Rebecca Tonietto will complete a project titled, “Urban bee community structure, pollination services and conservation in shrinking cities across North America.” under the academic mentorship of Dr. Gerardo Camilo at St. Louis University and Dr. Kelly Garbach at Loyola University Chicago and working in partnership with Michael Arduser of Missouri Department of Conservation and Dr. Paul Gobster of the USDA Forest Service.
While the Fellows' research projects focus on urgent conservation issues, they also learn firsthand the challenges and rewards of conservation applications. The program's focus is to enlarge their professional opportunities and ensure future success by helping them build relationships in the conservation and research communities and by providing opportunities for professional development through targeted workshops and training events. 
The fellowship is named after the late Dr. David H. Smith, founder of the Cedar Tree Foundation, and pediatrician, inventor and conservationist.  
The Smith Fellowship seeks to identify and support early-career scientists who will shape the growth of applied conservation biology. It’s also an opportunity for scientists to develop solutions to critical environmental challenges, said Dr. Michael P. Dombeck, executive director of the Smith Fellows program and former chief of the United States Forest Service. 
“The Smith Fellowship enables young scientists to improve and expand their research skills and direct their research efforts toward problems of pressing conservation concern, to bridge the gap between research and application,” Dombeck said.
Request for proposals for the 2016 Class of Smith Fellows will be announced in June 2015.  For more information see the Smith Fellows website at www.SmithFellows.org.