Kate is the CoastSmart Communities Planner for the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Chesapeake & Coastal Service (CCS). Made possible through a partnership with the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science (UMCES) - she provides technical and resource assistance to local communities throughout Maryland's coastal zone to incorporate coastal hazards and sea level rise adaptation into existing local planning and management efforts. Prior to joining CCS, Kate was a NOAA Coastal Management fellow in Olympia, WA with the Washington State Department of Ecology. The fellowship work resulted in a draft guidebook for local governments in WA to help plan for sea level rise adaptation within existing planning processes. The fellowship ended August 2012 and she started with CoastSmart in September.
Kate received a BS in Environmental Science from Lynchburg College in 2006 and an MS in Environmental Studies with a Certificate in Urban and Regional Planning from the College of Charleston, SC in 2010. Her Masters thesis focused on the privatization of natural resources in the South Carolina Lowcountry by comparing two case studies; one for-profit and one non-profit example of environmental governance. Using semi-structured interviews, participant obersvation, and coding, she looked at how the governing bodies in each case involved the local community, what this interaction may mean for the future of the local, minority communities, and how a rising "Nature-class" may be shaping and gentrifying the Lowcountry. Unknowingly, these qualitative methodologies would help prepare her for the delicate world of discussing sea level rise adaptation strategies with diverse stakeholder groups.
When not discussing rising seas, Kate likes getting to higher heights with rock climbing and getting grounded through yoga and hiking. She's currently thoroughly enjoying re-exploring the history, museums, and parks of her new (and birth) city of Washington, DC.