Casey is a tribal member of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe in Mashpee, Massachusetts on Cape Cod. He completed his PhD in 2013 in Physical Geography with a focus on Climate Education and working with Native American tribes.
Based out of University of Massachusetts, Amherst at the NE CSC office, he will provide current climate science information to Tribal Nations on the East Coast and in Gulf Coast states, as well as identify climate research needs and priorities, and provide climate adaptation planning support for the Tribes. In this capacity, Casey will serve as a direct liaison between Tribes in the Midwest, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and climate science researchers to identify and address research gaps in climate, natural, and cultural resources as well as improve outreach and capacity building.
Casey has a background in geography (Ph.D. and Master’s in Geography from University of Arizona and Bachelor’s from the University of New Mexico) and has interests in communicating current climate science and helping to identify and prioritize research needs and adaptive planning for tribes. Before joining USET, he was the Director of the Natural Resources Department of the Mashie Wampanoag Tribe, and has been a geographer, weather and climate instructor and project director for a land grant sustainability program. He also served with the Indigenous Peoples Climate Change Working Groups based at Haskell Indian Nations University in Lawrence, Kansas.
More about the Position
The Tribal Climate Science Liaison will serve as a technical expert on climate change issues, resource vulnerability, and climate adaptation actions to Tribal nations. Casey, along with Sara Smith, who was hired by the College of Menominee Nation as the Midwest Liaison, will participate in a network of Tribal climate science liaisons within the Climate Science Center network; and a national workgroup of Tribal organizations, Tribal colleges, and other partners to address policy and resource issues associated with Tribal climate resilience. Casey will cover the USET region, and more broadly the combined region comprising the NE CSC and Southeast CSC. He will be responsible to develop and implement a communication, education and outreach program; identify climate research needs and priorities; and provide climate adaptation planning support to Tribal nations. He will also integrate program and research results into budget documents, annual reports, or other documents.
The NE CSC is excited to welcome Casey!
View Casey’s profile here —> https://necsc.umass.edu/people/casey-c-thornbrugh