|The 2019-20 SEJ board, along with executive director Meaghan Parker, in Boise, Idaho on December 7, 2019. © Photo courtesy of Bobby Magill. Click to enlarge.|
Meera Subramanian, President
Emily Gertz, First Vice Pres. & Programs Chair
Katy Daigle, Second Vice Pres. & Membership Chair
Sadie Babits,Treasurer & Finance Chair
Sara Shipley Hiles, Rep. for Academic Membership
Jennifer Bogo, Rep. for Associate Membership
Ex Officio Board Member
Jim Detjen, Founding President
Meaghan Parker, Executive Director
Beth Parke, Founding Executive Director
Christine Bruggers, Deputy Director/Director of Awards
Jay Letto, Director of Annual Conferences
Meagan Jeanette, Program and Membership Assistant
SEJ Project Consultants
Joseph A. Davis, TipSheet and FOI WatchDog Director and Editor; Member, SEJ FOI Task Force
Adam Glenn, SEJournal Online Editor; Member, Editorial Advisory Board
Cindy MacDonald, Web Content Manager
Dale Willman, Programs Associate
Kevin Beaty, Conference Associate
SEJ board service FAQs
— the what's and why's of serving on the SEJ board
|SEJ board president Meera Subramanian sends her greetings and an invitation to support SEJ's vital mission.|
Meera Subramanian is an award-winning independent journalist whose work has been published in national and international publications including the New York Times, TheNewYorker.com, Nature, Virginia Quarterly Review and Orion, where she serves as a contributing editor. Her book "A River Runs Again: India's Natural World in Crisis, from the Barren Cliffs of Rajasthan to the Farmlands of Karnataka," published by PublicAffairs in 2015, was short-listed for the 2016 Orion Book Award. Through her work, she has explored the disappearance of India's vultures, questioned the "Good Anthropocene," sought out fragile shorelines, and investigated perceptions of climate change among conservative Americans. Her essays have been anthologized in "Best American Science and Nature Writing," as well as multiple editions of "The Best Women's Travel Writing." She was an MIT Knight Science Journalism fellow (2016-17) and Fulbright-Nehru Senior Research Fellow (2013-14), and will serve as the Currie C. and Thomas A. Barron Visiting Professor in the Environment and the Humanities at Princeton University for the 2019-2020 academic year. Based in Cape Cod, you can find her at www.meerasub.org and @meeratweets. Current term: 2018-2021. Contact Meera.
First Vice President and Programs Chair
Emily J. Gertz publishes (de)regulation nation, a newsletter tracking bad, better, good and great environmental news in the Trump era, and is a contributor to the podcast Drilled. Emily has reported national and international stories for diverse publications including HuffPost, Popular Science, TED Ideas, Dwell magazine, Reveal, Men’s Journal, The Guardian, Scientific American and Rolling Stone. She is the co-author of two Maker Media books on do-it-yourself environmental monitoring, and contributed to "The Science Writers’ Handbook" and "Worldchanging: A User’s Guide to the 21st Century". Emily was re-elected to the board in 2018, after serving a one-year term in 2013-2014, and is also a member of SEJ’s Freedom of Information Task Force. Contact Emily.
Second Vice President and Membership Chair
Katy Daigle is a journalist and an editor at Science News magazine in Washington, D.C. She has spent the past two decades working internationally — from Moscow, London, Puerto Rico and, most recently, New Delhi. While stationed in South Asia in 2010-2017, Katy guided the Associated Press news report from the region while covering environmental news. In 2014, Katy won the Ramnath Goenka award for "Best Foreign Correspondent in India" for her investigative series on the asbestos industry's operations in the country. She also has written on a range of environmental and science topics, including endangered species, air pollution, climate change, water, energy and agriculture. Katy's fellowships include the Ted Scripps Environmental Journalism Fellowship at the University of Colorado-Boulder in 2012-13, the National Center for Atmospheric Research journalism fellowship in 2013 and the Wood’s Hole Oceanographic Institute journalism fellowship in 2016. Raised in California, Katy holds a master's degree from the London School of Economics and a bachelor's degree in journalism and history from Northwestern University. Current term: 2018-2021. Contact Katy.
Treasurer and Finance Chair
Sadie Babits (bio available soon). Contact Sadie.
Bobby Magill covers energy, public lands and climate change for Bloomberg Environment in Washington, D.C. His broad beat has also included United Nations international climate negotiations in Poland and Spain. Bobby served as SEJ President from 2016-2019. Previously, he was a senior science writer at Climate Central in New York and was an environment reporter for newspapers in the West, including the Fort Collins Coloradoan; the Daily Sentinel in Grand Junction, Colo.; the Post-Independent in Glenwood Springs, Colo.; the Taos News in Taos, N.M., and the Mountain Mail and Defensor Chieftain newspapers in Socorro, N.M. His work has appeared in Climate Liability News, Popular Mechanics, Scientific American, The Guardian, Grist, Salon, USA Today and other publications. Born and raised in Charleston, S.C., he graduated from the College of Charleston in 2001. Find him on Twitter @bobbymagill or online at bobbymagill.com. Board member since 2015. Current term: 2018-2021. Contact Bobby, 202-524-0296.
Jeff Burnside is an independent journalist working on his debut documentary film "First Contact, Lost Treasures." He was a 2017-18 Scripps Journalism Fellow at the Center for Environmental Journalism, University of Colorado in Boulder. He has been in the news business for more than 20 years working as an investigative reporter, general assignment reporter, executive producer and segment producer in cities such as Boston (WCVB Chronicle), Miami (WTVJ Special Projects Unit) and most recently, Seattle, as senior investigative reporter for KOMO 4 News. He's won more than 20 journalism awards — for television news, newspaper reporting and photography — including 10 regional Emmys. Jeff is also a frequent invited speaker and panelist on environmental journalism, journalism ethics and media training. He's earned working media fellowships at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (Tromso, Norway), Heinrich Boell Institute for green energy (Berlin), Steinbrenner Institute for climate science (Carnegie Mellon University), Reynolds Center for Business Journalism on the green economy (Cronkite School at Arizona State University), Metcalf Institute for Environmental Reporting (University of Rhode Island) and the Western Knight Center for Specialized Reporting in political coverage (University of Southern California Annenberg School). Board member since 2006. Current term: 2018-2021. Contact Jeff, 206-512-6544.
Breanna Draxler is an independent science and environment editor based in Seattle. Her clients include National Geographic and Knowable, among others. Previously, she has worked as an editor on staff at bioGraphic, Popular Science and Discover magazines. She initially got into the beat while working at the Center for Environmental Journalism and pursuing a master's degree from CU Boulder. In addition to journalistic storytelling, she's also a fan of biking, backpacking and experimenting with lactofermentation. Current term: 2017-2020. Contact Breanna.
Judy Fahys is Mountain West Reporter for InsideClimate News and its new national environmental reporting network. Previously, she covered the environment for NPR Utah/KUER 90.1, in Salt Lake City, and The Salt Lake Tribune, focusing on everything from the fight over national monuments in Utah, to air pollution policy, the recreation economy, Colorado River water resources and the nation's radioactive legacy. A longtime member of the Society of Environmental Journalists and Investigative Reporters and Editors, she was a Knight Science Journalism Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Current term: 2018-2021. Contact Judy, 801-703-8846.
Lyndsey Gilpin is the founder and editor-in-chief of Southerly, an independent media organization about ecology, justice and culture in the American South. Currently based in the coalfields of Eastern Kentucky, she has covered climate change, energy and environmental justice all over the U.S. Her work has appeared in Harper's, Vice, The Daily Beast, CityLab, Undark, High Country News, FiveThirtyEight, The Washington Post, Hakai, The Atlantic, Grist, Outside and InsideClimate News. She earned her master's degree from Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. Current term: 2017-2020. Contact Lyndsey.
Michael Kodas is an award-winning author, reporter, photojournalist and journalism educator as well as the former Deputy Director of the Center for Environmental Journalism at the University of Colorado Boulder. He was the winner of the 2018 Colorado Book Award for General Nonfiction for his book, "Megafire: The Race to Extinguish a Deadly Epidemic of Flame," which was also named one of the 20 best nonfiction books of 2017 by Amazon. He is also the author of "High Crimes: The Fate of Everest in an Age of Greed," which was named Best Non-Fiction in USA Book News’ National Best Books Awards of 2008 and was the subject of a question on the game show Jeopardy. In 1999 he was part of the team at The Hartford Courant awarded The Pulitzer Prize for breaking news coverage and has been honored with awards from the Pictures of Year International competition, the Society of Professional Journalists, the Lowell Thomas Travel Journalism Competition and the National Press Photographers Association. His work has appeared in the New York Times, The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Boston Globe, The Denver Post, Newsweek, National Geographic News, Mother Jones and many other publications. His photography was featured in the Ken Burns/Lynn Novick documentary "The Vietnam War" and he has appeared on the HBO program "Last Week Tonight with John Oliver," in the American Experience documentary "The Big Burn" on PBS and more. From 2013 to 2019 Kodas was one of the directors of the prestigious Ted Scripps Fellowships in Environmental Journalism, which brings five mid-career journalists focused on environmental topics to the University of Colorado Boulder. Kodas was a Ted Scripps Fellow in Environmental Journalism at the University of Colorado (2009-10), a Davidoff Scholar at the Wesleyan Writers Workshop (2005) and is a graduate of the University of Missouri’s School of Journalism. Current term: 2019-2022. Contact Michael.
Susan Moran is an independent print journalist, covering science, the environment, health and agriculture. Her work has appeared in Popular Science, Discover, The New York Times, The Economist, Ensia and several other publications. She also is a producer and host of a weekly science show, "How On Earth," on KGNU community radio in Colorado. Susan has been a journalist for nearly three decades, initially on staff at Reuters (Tokyo, New York, Silicon Valley), Business 2.0 magazine and other news organizations. She taught journalism for seven years as an adjunct instructor at the University of Colorado. Susan has a master's degree in journalism from Columbia University, and a master's degree in Asian Studies from University of California Berkeley. She was a Knight Science Journalism Fellow at MIT in 2009-10, and a Ted Scripps Environmental Journalism Fellow at the University of Colorado in 2001-02. Susan has been an SEJ board member since 2014. Current term: 2017-2020. Contact Susan.
Laura Paskus is a correspondent and producer for New Mexico In Focus, a weekly program on New Mexico PBS. She began her career in journalism in 2002 as an assistant editor for High Country News, and has worked as a reporter and producer for KUNM-FM, as the environment reporter for New Mexico Political Report and as managing editor for Tribal College Journal, a publication of the American Indian Higher Education Consortium. She's also freelanced for local, regional and national papers and magazines about issues related to climate change, water challenges in the arid southwestern United States, energy development, mining and other natural resource issues. Her book, "At the Precipice: New Mexico's Changing Climate" is forthcoming from the University of New Mexico Press in 2020. Contact Laura, 505-217-5136.
Wm. Roger Witherspoon has spent more than five decades working in all forms of the media as a journalist, author, educator and public relations specialist. Along the way, he has written extensively on politics, foreign affairs, finance, defense, civil rights, constitutional law, health, the environment and energy. Most of his career has been in the news business, working as a full time reporter, editor, columnist or producer for a variety of media companies including newspapers (The Record, N. J.; Star Ledger, N. J.; NY Daily News; Atlanta Constitution; Dallas Times Herald; and Journal News (N.Y.); television (CNN, KNBC and NBC Network); and radio (WCBN, MI). As a freelance writer, he has written for several publications, including Time, Newsweek, Fortune, Essence, The Economist and US Black Engineer & IT. As an educator, he was responsible for restructuring the print and broadcast curriculum and staff in the Department of Mass Communications at Clark-Atlanta University. In public affairs, he managed millions of dollars in health and environmental grant programs globally for Exxon Corp. He is the author of "Martin Luther King, Jr…to the Mountaintop," Doubleday; and co-author of "Feats and Wisdom of the Ancients," Time-Life Books; and "Engineering 101: A Text Manual," Hampton University College of Science and Engineering. He is a founder of the Association of Black Journalists, which grew into the present National Association of Black Journalists; and a member of the International Motor Press Association and the Automotive Press Association. Board member since 2011. Current term: 2017-2020. Contact Roger, 201-906-0220.
Representative for the SEJ Academic Membership
Sara Shipley Hiles is an associate professor at the University of Missouri School of Journalism, where she teaches writing and online journalism. Her areas of interest include environmental, science and health reporting; using multimedia and social media; and investigative reporting. Hiles started her journalism career at The Times-Picayune in New Orleans while still a student at Loyola University. Later she moved to the The Statesman-Journal in Salem, Oregon; The Courier-Journal in Louisville, Kentucky; and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. She has taught at Western Kentucky University and Bowling Green State University in Ohio. She has won awards and recognition for teaching, feature writing, digital journalism and investigative reporting. She received a master's in journalism from the Missouri School of Journalism and is helping build the school's science communication program. Contact Sara.
Representative for the SEJ Associate Membership
Jennifer Bogo is the VP of content for the National Audubon Society, where she oversees the crack editorial team producing bird-savvy conservation and science stories for Audubon magazine and Audubon.org. She came full circle to Audubon, and to avians, after stints extolling the virtues of robots and space probes as the science editor at Popular Mechanics and executive editor of Popular Science. Stories she edited have won a National Magazine Award and been included in the "Best American Science Writing" and "Best American Science and Nature Writing" anthologies. She has made frequent media appearances as a science expert, and she has traveled to research stations from the Arctic to the Antarctic to report feature stories herself. Current term: 2018-2021. Contact Jennifer.
Jim Detjen served as Director of the Knight Center for Environmental Journalism and Knight Chair at Michigan State University from January 1995 through May 2012. Previously Detjen spent 21 years as a professional newspaper reporter and editor at The Philadelphia Inquirer, The (Louisville) Courier-Journal and other publications. His reporting has won more than 50 state, national and international awards including Polk, National Headliner, Stokes and Meeman awards. He is a three-time finalist for a Pulitzer Prize. Detjen is a contributor to or author of four books on environmental and science journalism topics. He has lectured widely and has taught journalism workshops in the British Isles, Australia, Russia, Ukraine, China, Japan, Portugal, France, Italy, Germany, Hungary, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Egypt, Mexico and throughout the U.S. Detjen helped found the International Federation of Environmental Journalists in 1993 and served as IFEJ president from 1994 to 2000. He earned a bachelor's degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY. and a master's degree in journalism from Columbia University. Detjen was awarded a Fulbright scholarship to teach at Nanakai University in Tianjin, China, during the spring semester of 2002. Ex officio board member and founding president, 1990. Contact Jim, 517-353-9479.
Meaghan Parker is the Executive Director of the Society of Environmental Journalists. Previously, she was the Senior Writer/Editor and Partnerships Director for the Environmental Change and Security Program and the Global Sustainability and Resilience Program of the Wilson Center, a nonpartisan policy forum in Washington, DC., where she worked for 15 years. She is the founder and editor-in-chief of the award-winning New Security Beat, a daily blog covering environment, health and security. She was the supervising producer of the award-winning documentary trilogy, “Healthy People, Healthy Environment,” three short films filmed in Tanzania, Nepal and Ethiopia. She was the lead editor of "A New Climate for Peace," an online platform and independent study commissioned by the G7 Foreign Ministers. A frequent speaker and moderator on panels about media, she served two terms as the associate board member for SEJ. Before joining the Center, she was Manager of Research and Internal Communications at the Fortune 500 energy company PPL Global, where she researched international investments and renewable energy policy. Contact Meaghan, 202-558-2033.
Founding Executive Director
Beth Parke became SEJ's first executive director in 1993. She provides entrepreneurial leadership to clarify, protect and advance SEJ's mission. Parke's responsibilities include implementation of board policies, budget and finance, development, strategic planning, university relations with regard to annual conferences, and collaboration with partners in the journalism community. From 1984-1992 Parke was senior producer and host for Consider the Alternatives, an award-winning radio series on public policy issues. Prior to that she was employed as a producer for National Public Radio affiliates WGBH-FM, Boston and WHYY-FM, Philadelphia. Parke earned a B.A. in Communications from Boston College, and an M.A. from the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania. View a tribute to Beth. Contact Beth.
Deputy Director, Director of Awards
A. Christine Bruggers has served with distinction in multiple staff roles since 1993. Her leadership and creativity have produced a base of systems for SEJ programs and operations including the building of database systems for membership, listservs and accounts; marketing, planning and implemention of annual conferences, awards, FEJ and other programs; training and supervising administrative and program staff; design and production of SEJournal; and leadership with SEJ's board on membership policy and elections procedures. She is responsible for moving membership applications and member data from paper to electronic files in 2009. Bruggers also serves as Director of SEJ Awards and as such developed one of the earliest online entry-form procedures for journalism awards in 2010. She also supervises the annual board election and created online balloting in 2010, both saving money and increasing voter participation. Bruggers earned a B.A. in professional writing from Kutztown University in Pennsylvania. She is also an accomplished photographer. Contact Chris, 202-558-2022.
Annual Conference Director
Jay Letto, a founding member of SEJ, has been the group's annual conference director since 1993. He also works as a freelance writer and editor. From 1986 to 1992, Letto served as director of the environment program at the Scientists' Institute for Public Information in New York City, where he was also co-editor of SIPIscope. Letto has organized scores of programs for journalists on the full spectrum of environmental issues. As annual conference director for SEJ, he works with the board conference chair and dozens of member-volunteers to organize a balanced, diverse and news-making program dealing with the myriad aspects of news reporting on environmental issues. Letto earned his B.S. in biology and environmental studies from the University of Michigan. He also holds an M.A. in journalism, with a certificate in science and environmental reporting, from New York University. Contact Jay, 509-493-4428 (West Coast - Pacific Time).
Marketing and Programs Associate
Meagan Jeanette assists with SEJ member and customer support, donor gifts and pledges, e-blasts, processing ad orders and reimbursement requests, Listserv subscriptions, conference marketing, exhibit tracking, data reports and development of basic procedures. Based in Louisville, Kentucky, Jeanette is also a classically-trained chef and works with Edible Louisville & the Bluegrass Magazine as their Advertising Account Executive. Contact Meagan, 202-558-2050.
SEJ Project Consultants
TipSheet and WatchDog TipSheet Editor; Member, SEJ FOI Taskforce
Joseph A. Davis is a freelance writer/editor in Washington, D.C. who has been writing about the environment since 1976. He directs the WatchDog Project, an activity of SEJ's Freedom of Information Task Force that reports on secrecy trends and supports reporters' efforts to make better use of FOIA, and writes WatchDog Tipsheet. He also writes SEJournal Online’s Reporter's Toolbox and TipSheet columns, and compiles SEJ's daily news headlines, EJToday. Davis was senior writer with the Environmental Health Center until 2002, where he was acting editor of EHC's Environment Writer as well as principal author of EHC's reporter's guide on the science of global climate change. Between 1982 and 1989, he covered energy, environment and natural resources for Congressional Quarterly in Washington, D.C. Davis earned his B.A. from Harvard University and a Ph.D. in American Literature from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. He has experience in database reporting and has taught Web publishing. Contact Joe, 301-656-2261.
SEJournal Online Editor
A. Adam Glenn is an award-winning journalist, media consultant and journalism educator with 30-plus years in newspaper, magazine and online newsrooms, including ABCNews.com. A long-time specialist in environmental news, he is editor of the SEJournal Online and is on the SEJ editorial advisory board. He is also editor of the climate adaptation news project AdaptNY and of the Reporter's Guide to Climate Adaptation. An online pioneer since the 1990s, he has spent the last decade focused on community, engagement and social media. Adam's consulting clients have included news publishers, journalism think tanks, and non-profit and charitable organizations. He is a distinguished lecturer at Hunter College at the City University of New York, and previously taught at CUNY's Graduate School of Journalism, New York University and Columbia University. Adam has won numerous fellowships and grants, most recently as a public policy scholar at the Washington, D.C.-based Wilson Center think tank. He holds a Master of Arts degree in international policy from the Fletcher School of International Law and Diplomacy, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism from Boston University. He lives with his daughter in the Lower Hudson Valley outside New York City. Contact Adam, 914-409-8795.
Web Content Manager
Cindy MacDonald, SEJ's Web content manager, develops and maintains fresh, accurate and timely content for www.sej.org on a daily basis. She has applied her technical expertise and extensive experience as a detail-oriented writer and administrator to this creative and critically important service to the SEJ community since December 2000. Based near Lindsay, Ontario, Canada, MacDonald is an avid proponent of accurate information in general and on environmental issues in particular. She is a French/Spanish undergraduate of the University of Windsor, Canada. Contact Cindy.
Dale Willman has been an award-winning correspondent, editor, trainer and teacher for more than 40 years. He recently spent a year in South Sudan working as Lead Journalism Trainer and Civic Education Advisor for a USAID-funded project. He also spent a year in Indonesia as a Senior Fulbright Scholar, and has worked as an international journalism trainer and mentor on five continents. Currently, Willman is a Program Manager for the City University of New York (CUNY), where he has created a Resilience Fellowship for journalists. He also fills in as a newscaster for NPR, where he previously worked for more than 12 years in Washington, D.C. Willman has organized workshops for the Society of Environmental Journalists on a broad array of topics, from the changing environmental regulations under the Trump Administration to how to better report on climate change issues. During the first Gulf War he provided reporting and hourly newscasts from London. His work was included in NPR’s receipt of the 1991 duPont-Columbia Award for Excellence in Broadcast Journalism. As a correspondent he won a national Edward R. Murrow Award for Investigative Reporting in 1998 for his CNN Radio series, Broadway’s Dirty Little Secret. And while with CBS, Willman provided coverage of the White House, Capitol Hill, the Pentagon and the State Department for CBS Radio stations. He also served as field producer and correspondent for a number of major events, from U.S.-Soviet Summits to the bombing of the Murrah Federal Office Building in Oklahoma City. Willman is also a public speaker and lectures on college campuses on numerous topics, from environmental journalism to media diversity. Contact Dale.
Editorial Advisory Board
The Editorial Advisory Board's role is to consult regularly with the SEJournal editor and others on editorial content for online/e-newsletters and themed SEJournal print publications. The Editorial Advisory Board may also be called upon to advise SEJ's executive director on publications strategy, as needed.
The 11-member SEJ Editorial Advisory Board is made up of the following voting members: Up to eight volunteer publications editorial staff, a SEJ Board liaison, the SEJournal editor (serving ex officio) and a chairperson (any SEJ member in good standing, to be nominated and selected by the Advisory Board members). Additional SEJ editorial staff are invited to serve as nonvoting members of the Editorial Advisory Board.
Robert McClure (chair)
Adam Glenn (SEJournal editor)
Meera Subramanian (Board of Directors liaison)
Joseph A. Davis
Vacant (11th member)
Peter Thomson (co-chair)
Carolyn Whetzel (co-chair)
Beth Parke (ex officio)