GraceMcCaskey.pngCynthia A. Grace-McCaskey, Ph.D.

Department of Anthropology & Coastal Studies Institute
East Carolina University

I am honored and excited to be nominated for a position on the SfAA Board. I have been an active member of the SfAA since I was a graduate student in 2006. From the first meeting I attended, I have always been impressed by how welcoming and inclusive the association and its members have been. I am an applied environmental anthropologist, and my research focuses on marine resource management and community resilience, emphasizing the need to increase community engagement and participation in management and planning processes. Prior to joining East Carolina University’s Department of Anthropology and Coastal Studies Institute in 2016, I worked for NOAA Fisheries (via University of Hawaii’s Joint Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Research), giving me valuable experience collaborating and conducting research in both agency-based and academic contexts. In addition to regularly organizing panels, contributing papers to the annual meetings, and being an active member of the Fisheries and Coastal Communities and Risk and Disasters TIGs, I served on the SfAA 2021 Conference Program Committee and the Local Arrangements Committee. In addition to my roles with the SfAA, I have served on several institutional advisory groups and committees charged with developing interdisciplinary programming, agenda setting, and forging new working relationships and partnerships. Serving in these positions has provided me with experience and skills that will be valuable as a member of the board. The SfAA has played an important role in my development as an applied anthropologist, and so I have a strong desire to serve the SfAA in a more significant capacity. If elected to the board, I will work to increase collaboration and build cooperative initiatives among TIGs as well as with other closely aligned organizations, such as the Political Ecology Society. In addition, based on my experience working on interdisciplinary research teams related to fisheries, climate change, and environmental justice, I understand the need to further develop our ability as anthropologists to effectively communicate the important contributions the discipline can make to addressing real world, global “wicked” problems such as climate change and public health disparities. For this reason, I would also be interested in spearheading initiatives related to promoting effective interdisciplinary collaboration and communication.

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