Graduate student Staci Lewis of George Mason University in Virginia has been awarded a Dean John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship.
She will spend the next year working in the Washington D.C. office of Vice Admiral Conrad Lautenbacher, who is the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Undersecretary for Oceans and Atmosphere and head of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
"Working for the head of an agency, I expect it to be fastpaced and very exciting," Lewis said. "Also, I will witness how NOAA operates and how big policy, management and organizational decisions are made."
As a student, Lewis is studying environmental science and policy and is researching the role of coral reef predators in coral disease.
The Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium endorsed Lewis’ application for the paid fellowship, which is sponsored by the NOAA’s National Sea Grant College Program. During a competitive selection process at the national level, Lewis was chosen to become one of 48 Knauss fellows for 2008.
She holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Salem College in North Carolina and is a former Fulbright Fellow.
Working at Dauphin Island Sea Lab in Alabama, Lewis served as manager of reef-systems projects in Panama, the Florida Keys and Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary off the coast of Texas.
She is a 1998 graduate of Foley High School and the daughter of Ronald D. Lewis Sr. of Foley, Ala., and Sandra Lewis of Daphne, Ala.