Newly elected Chair of the Puget Sound Partnership Science Panel Joe Gaydos began his term on January 25th, with Bill Labiosa serving as Vice Chair. Gaydos is the Chief Scientist for the SeaDoc Society, a marine ecosystem health program of the UC Davis Wildlife Health Center. Gaydos has been a member of the Science Panel since 2009, and has spent the past eight years collecting and distributing scientific data on Puget Sound.
Science panel role
The Science Panel advises the Puget Sound Partnership (PSP) as it works toward science-based restoration of the Puget Sound region. Panel members are appointed by the PSP Leadership Council from scientists drawn from around Washington State. The Science Panel also serves as an adviser to the Puget Sound Institute.
Education and outreach
Gaydos says one of his goals as Chair is to emphasize science education and outreach, something that has been evident in his work at SeaDoc, where research and education are often given equal billing. At a recent keynote address to the Sound Waters Conference on Whidbey Island, Gaydos put it this way: “Science must be shared. The job of the scientist is no-longer over when the publication comes out.” Gaydos says the Science Panel should be mindful of a three-tiered audience that includes the general public, policy makers and the scientific community itself, when communicating its message. “Science is no good to anybody if it stays inaccessible,” he says.
Other priorities for Gaydos include a renewed commitment to risk assessment and a continuation of the efforts already underway in the Science Panel’s Biennial Science Work Plan. “There are a multitude of issues facing Puget Sound,” he tells PSI. “We need to ask where we need more science. What are the biggest factors influencing Puget Sound and where can we put our resources and effort to do the most good and make the biggest impact?”