SEJ Welcomes Scott Dodd to the Board

SEJ Welcomes Scott Dodd to the board, as Kate Sheppard steps down.

The Society of Environmental Journalists is pleased to announce that Scott Dodd, executive editor of Grist, has been appointed to the SEJ Board of Directors. 

Dodd's broad experience in news, science and the environment will aid SEJ as it accelerates its push to bolster environmental reporting. 

The SEJ board appointed Dodd to fill a seat left vacant by Kate Sheppard, enterprise editor and senior reporter at HuffPost, an online news site. Sheppard, who served on SEJ's board since 2013, resigned April 30 due to time pressures from new responsibilities, including teaching journalism at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. 

Dodd will serve until the next board election, which is during SEJ’s annual conference in Pittsburgh in October. 

"I'm very pleased to be offered a seat on the SEJ board," Dodd said. "It's a critical time for environmental journalism, and this organization provides vital tools, support, protection and solidarity for journalists who find themselves doing some of the most important work of their careers. 

Starting in 1994, Dodd worked for more than a decade as a newspaper reporter and editor, spending eight years at The Charlotte Observer, where he contributed to Pulitzer Prize-winning coverage of Hurricane Katrina by a sister Knight-Ridder publication. He was an editor at the Natural Resources Defense Council’s onEarth magazine and later served as the organization’s editorial director, overseeing digital content. He has written for a number of publications, including Scientific American and Slate. He joined Grist last year. 

SEJ President Bobby Magill said Dodd’s extensive experience in both award-winning journalism and the nonprofit world will be important to SEJ as it seeks new sources of funding, broadens its membership and looks for innovative new ways to support environmental journalism.  

Sheppard was elected to the SEJ board in 2013 and has led efforts to increase and diversify SEJ membership. She will be missed, but will continue contributing to membership efforts. Sheppard previously reported for Mother Jones, Grist and The American Prospect, and her work has been featured in several other publications. 

Magill said Sheppard has made a significant impact on SEJ with her leadership and insight during a year-long period of transition for the organization as the board brought on a new executive director.  

“Kate’s vision, leadership and talent have helped to carefully and thoughtfully guide SEJ through the changes over the last year,” Magill said. “We’re incredibly grateful for Kate’s service on the board and her dedication to SEJ.”   

Sheppard said she is happy that Dodd is filling her seat, calling him "a true innovator and big-thinker in digital environmental journalism."

Nancy Gaarder assumes Sheppard's place as Second Vice President and Membership Co-Chair. Meaghan Parker serves as the other Membership Co-Chair.