WSAS Annual Report 2020

January 1, 2020

Letter from the WSAS President

2020 was a remarkable year, with many high points for our young organization, even in the face of an uncertain future.

WSAS secured funding for four projects from three state agencies: one each from the WA Department Fish and Wildlife and the Governor’s Salmon Recovery Office, and two from the WA Department of Ecology. In addition, project committees on Salmon Hatcheries (WDFW) and the Skagit Water Supply (ECY) completed their work.

Seventeen stellar new members joined WSAS, along with four newly inducted NASEM members, bringing our total membership to 311. The Board of Directors approved the implementation of membership dues beginning in FY 21 (July 1, 2020).

Ron Mittelhammer led the development of the 12th annual symposium “Wildfire in Washington State,” which examined a range of issues associated with wildfires including health impacts, fuel and ecosystems, economics, and government regulations and policy. The proceedings were published in November 2019 and can be found on our website.

The WSAS Board established two new ad hoc committees: the COVID-19 Steering Committee is charged with developing Academy actions to assist the state in dealing with the pandemic. Actions may involve near-term advice and longer term assessments of outcomes and recommendations on how to prepare for future emergencies. The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee is charged to develop a DEI statement to guide our programs and operations.

In these challenging times, we are thankful to state legislators and agencies for their requests for us to provide independent peer review of the science that informs important policy decisions. We also are thankful to our members and other leading researchers who have become involved in our work – science in the service of Washington State.

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