Donna Gerardi Riordan

Donna Gerardi Riordan

Executive Director

Donna Gerardi Riordan joined the Academy in 2017 with three decades of experience in science policy. With degrees from Georgetown University and George Washington University, she served for 14 years as a staff member at the U.S. National Academy of Sciences in Washington, D.C., where she founded and directed its Office of Public Understanding of Science. While working on policy issues in California in the 2000s, she was the co-architect of the first state-level Science & Technology Fellows Program, which places scientists and engineers in the state legislature. While consulting with national and state level organizations, primarily on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education, she founded Research Northwest (since changed to Research Now), a non-profit organization devoted to generating best available science for policy decisions. She is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and President of the National Association of Academies of Science. She believes that Washington state is right-sized to lead the nation as a model of evidence-informed policy making.

P. Joe conry

Program Finance Manager

P. Joe Conry is a first generation college graduate and an honors graduate from St. Louis University in the Executive Masters of International Business program. He has 32 years of finance, contracts, and program management experience including 12 years as an executive. He retired from Boeing as a Senior Director of Finance in Global Operations. Joe has a wide range of experience in finance supporting research and development, materials development, supply chain, shop floor manufacturing, cash management, facilities, and product development. One common theme is his years of experience in collaborating with engineers and scientists as a trusted finance partner to help further the scientific mission on leading-edge technologies.

Renske Dyedov, PH.D.

Associate Program Officer

Renske Dyedov is a trained scientist and communicator. Previously, she oversaw communications for two innovative research institutes at the University of Washington. Renske also consulted for an assortment of scientific nonprofits including Professional Development Hub – a national initiative to advance the career and professional development of PhD scientists – and Engineers and Scientists Acting Locally. Prior to that, she ran a leadership development program for graduate students hosted by the American Association for the Advancement of Science and was a Mirzayan Science and Technology Policy Fellow at the National Academies. She holds a PhD in Cell and Molecular Biology from the University of Pennsylvania and a BS in Chemical Biology from the University of California, Berkeley.

Tristan Fehr, Ph.D.

Associate Program Officer

Tristan Fehr, Ph.D. (he & they) is an Associate Program Officer for the Washington State Academy of Sciences, in which he oversees and facilitates WSAS research projects. Tristan completed his Ph.D. and postdoctoral fellowship in Neuroscience at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York, NY following a year as a Fulbright Research Fellow at the Instituto Cajal in Madrid, Spain. He received BS degrees in Biology and Psychology with a minor in Spanish from Arizona State University. In addition, Tristan researched how invasive species information influences plant nursery inventories with the United States Geological Survey, spearheaded science communication and LGBTQIA+ advocacy initiatives in and around NYC, and volunteers with the National Science Policy Network’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion committee.

Emma Rogers

Emma Rogers

Project Coordinator

Emma Rogers studied at Occidental College in Los Angeles, California, studying Urban and Environmental Policy with an emphasis in Data Science and Public Health. Her research focused on California’s climate policy with an investigation into the efficacy of strategies used to respond to climate change while advancing environmental justice. She brings organizational and analytics skills derived from experience with grassroots organizations, political campaigns and a policy focused non-profit, among others. Emma’s effective project management and communication skills have allowed her to be successful in high-paced environments, and she brings these experiences to support the vital mission of the Washington State Academy of Sciences.

Nichole Wamsley

Program Operations Manager

Nichole Wamsley has been working in higher education for over 13 years and brings coordinating and planning experience at professional schools to WSAS as the Program Operations Manager. As a first-generation college student, she discovered the power of education while obtaining her BA and attending graduate school at the University of Hawaii. She then was able to serve in several higher education roles across several professional schools including the University of Hawaii School of Nursing and Dental Hygiene, John A. Burns School of Medicine and Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine. She has a mission to explore the Kitsap Peninsula and enjoys the serenity of the ferry across the sound. All Seattle food recommendations are highly appreciated.

Work with us

We are fortunate to work with a talented group of consultants with unique skillsets that help us to advance our mission of ‘science in the service of Washington State.’