Kenan Institute for ETS and NC State Coastal Resilience and Sustainability Initiative Announce New Colleagues to Lead the Climate Leaders Program

RALEIGH, N.C. – The Kenan Institute for Engineering, Technology & Science (KIETS) at NC State University and the NC State Coastal Resilience and Sustainability Initiative are pleased to announce the selection of Professor Ruoying (Roy) He and Ms. Amanda Mueller to lead the development of the KIETS Climate Leaders Program, a new initiative that will bring together students and faculty to focus on solutions for mitigating or reversing the negative effects of climate change. The opportunities provided by this new program will help empower, educate and inspire young climate leaders.

KIETS Director Dr. Ruben Carbonell states, “We are delighted to have Dr. He and Ms. Mueller on our team leading the Climate Leaders Program. They bring extremely valuable and relevant scientific knowledge combined with practical experience that truly exemplifies a ‘think and do’ approach to this program.  With their efforts and leadership, the Climate Leaders Program will complement and enhance NC State’s solutions orientation engaging some of our brightest students and faculty.”

Dr. He, who was selected as the Senior Faculty Fellow for the KIETS Climate Leaders Program, is a Goodnight Innovation Distinguished Professor in the Department of Marine, Earth, and Atmospheric Sciences at NC State. His research spans from coastal circulation dynamics and air-sea interaction to biophysical interactions. As the director of the Ocean Observing and Modeling Group, he conducts coastal ocean observations, remote sensing data analyses, and leads the development of prediction models of ocean circulation, air-sea-wave interactions, physical-biogeochemical couplings, as well as data assimilation.  Dr. He served as an associate editor for the Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans, and as a guest editor for Ocean Dynamics. He was the co-chair of Gordon Research Conference on Coastal Ocean Dynamics in 2017, and a member of National Academy of Sciences-Loop Current study committee. He is presently also a member of NSF Ocean Observatories Initiative Facility Board, a member of Integrated Ocean Observing System-National Modeling Team, and a science team member of International GODAE OceanView project. In addition to his research, Dr. He is a founder of Fathom Science an innovative startup company providing comprehensive marine environment analytics.

Ms. Mueller, who will serve as program manager for the KIETS Climate Leaders Program, most recently served as an Environmental Specialist with the NC Department of Environmental Quality’s (DEQ) Water Sciences Section. Ms. Mueller has worked on a variety of wetland related projects for DEQ for 18 years. The wide range of projects she has led have included establishment of the North Carolina Wetland Program Plan and its stakeholder group, co-creation of the website, review of proposed state and federal stream and wetland regulations, summation of state-permitted stream and wetland impacts/mitigation, organization of North Carolina stream and wetland training classes, coordination of North Carolina’s participation in the EPA’s National Wetland Condition Assessment, and coordination and participation in various wetland research projects. Ms. Mueller received a master’s degree from the Department of Resource Management and Policy at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science (VIMS) and her bachelor’s degree in Biology from the College of William and Mary.

The KIETS Climate Leaders Program is collaborating with the NC State Coastal Resilience and Sustainability Initiative, a campus wide effort sponsored by the Office of the Provost and led by Professor Mary Watzin.  In addition to serving as the KIETS Climate Leaders Program Manager, Ms. Mueller will serve as a program coordinator for the NC State Coastal Resilience and Sustainability Initiative. With the leadership of Dr. He and Ms. Mueller, these programs will develop and engage a community of faculty and students who will work collaboratively with industry, non-profit, government and community leaders across North Carolina to address important issues related to climate change and coastal resilience and sustainability.

NC State Coastal Resilience and Sustainability Initiative Director Dr. Mary Watzin adds, “NC State has a remarkably deep and diverse level of expertise across all our Colleges who understand the complex challenges of a changing climate and are ready to work with communities to craft solutions.  Collaboration is key to our collective success in addressing these challenges and we are very fortunate to have Dr. He and Ms. Mueller working with us to amplify and extend the value and impact of NC State’s expertise in coastal resilience and sustainability.”