Roberto is a biological anthropologist with expertise in animal behavior, communication, and evolutionary ecology. While at Duke University, he examined the function of adult male long calls on social organization and reproductive strategies among wild orangutan populations in Borneo and Sumatra. His research at Hunter College-CUNY and USC addressed the demographic and ecological sources of behavioral flexibility, geographic variation, and local adaptation by non-human primates in response to anthropogenic threats and climate change. In addition to extensive fieldwork throughout the Neotropics, Southeast Asia, and sub-Saharan Africa, Roberto was involved in wildlife conservation and management issues. He has worked with Indigenous communities on land-use planning and population monitoring and has policy interests in biodiversity, ecosystem services, environmental sustainability, international development, enhancing scientific literacy, and furthering minority representation in STEM fields. Since arriving in Washington, Roberto has focused on Arctic science policy and program management at both the NIH and NSF, including with Indigenous communities and in the context of the Interagency Arctic Research Policy Committee (IARPC) and Arctic Council Working Groups.
Carla D. Cotwright-Williams
2012-13 Legislative Branch Fellow sponsored by the American Mathematical Society
Carla is a mathematician with a background in combinatorics, namely, matroid theory and graph theory. Carla's research includes extensions of matroid representability involving clones. Carla has been awarded research fellowships with both NASA and the Office of Naval Research (ONR). At NASA, she examined random graphs and their relationship to Bayesian networks to improve diagnostic and prognostic technologies in autonomous vehicles. With the ONR, she worked with statistical measures of uncertainty in probability distributions which have applications in cryptography. Currently an assistant professor of Mathematics, she is on sabbatical from Norfolk State University. Carla continues to give back to the local community through her work as the coordinator of a mentoring program for underprivileged middle school girls.
2017-19 Executive Branch Fellow, USAID
Marissa is a development engineer and educator who works with communities wrestling with complex concerns. She strives to help people gain access to education to meet their needs. Marissa collaborates and cooperates with transdisciplinary groups worldwide and prides herself in communicating across boundaries. Marissa is a mentor to the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM) student chapter of Engineers Without Borders, advising on the design and implementation of water distribution projects in Guatemala. She also serves as the International Coordinator of a Guatemalan-led and runs NGO that builds infrastructure to meet indigenous communities' needs. Marissa is a faculty member of the Masters of Sustainable Peace-building program at UWM, where she is instituting courses focusing on community engagement in international development fieldwork. Marissa is an advocate for minorities and women in STEM fields and served as program coordinator of UWM's NSF FORTE program during 2009-2015. During that time, she also designed an internationally recognized project that continues to engage with informal dye industries in rural India to affordably clean their wastewater. This work earned her a Ph.D. in Civil/Environmental Engineering from UWM in 2015. Marissa stays rooted in the urban Milwaukee community by also serving as a natural sciences instructor at Milwaukee Area Technical College
2018-19 AAAS Executive Branch Fellow, U.S. Department of Agriculture
2017-18 Legislative Branch Fellow, sponsored by the American Veterinary Medical Association
Matt graduated from the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine in 2017. Originally from Libertyville, IL, he came to veterinary medicine as a second career. After graduating in 2007 from Drake University with a B.A. in radio and television journalism, he worked as a freelance television producer for various media outlets in Chicago and New York City. He was drawn to spend free time working with animals and found that was where his true passion lay. During veterinary school, he served as president of the Student American Veterinary Medical Association (SAVMA) and began work toward a Master's degree in public health (MPH) from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Combined with his previous experience as a journalist, his involvement in organized veterinary medicine and public health drew him to seek opportunities at the intersection of science and policy as a health communicator. To that end, he is thrilled to serve as an AAAS Science & Technology Congressional Fellow.
2006-08 Executive Branch Fellow, US Department of State
2012-14 Executive Branch Fellow, USAID Alumni Fellowship
Winnie is a senior officer with Pew’s preventing ocean plastics project, which aims to propose strategies to reduce the global ocean plastic pollution problem. She has also worked on Pew’s international conservation unit, developing new projects, and partnerships in Asia.
Before joining Pew, she was the climate change science and technology advisor with the U.S. Agency for International Development’s mission to Sri Lanka and the Maldives. She also managed the Marine Ecosystem Services Program at Forest Trends and was a science and technology policy fellow for the American Association for the Advancement of Science at the U.S. State Department.
Lau holds a bachelor’s degree in integrative biology and environmental sciences from the University of California, Berkley and a doctorate in oceanography from the University of Washington.
2010-11 Legislative Branch Fellow, sponsored by Geological Society of America & U.S. Geological Survey
Larry is a Research Affiliate at the Colorado School of Mines and Editor of Economic Geology, the premier international scientific journal in the field of mineral resources. Previously he was Deputy Associate Director for Energy & Mineral Resources at the U.S. Geological Survey. Before that he was an AAAS congressional fellow in the offices of Sen. Chris Coons and Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. Before that he had a academic career spanning three universities where he managed research laboratories and advised dozens of postdoctoral scientists and Ph.D., M.S., and B.S. students engaged in cutting edge mineral resource research funded by the National Science Foundation and private industry. He has worked as a consultant for mining companies in more than 50 countries and has been to most corners of the planet. He is available to visit other planets when feasible! He earned a Ph.D. degree in geology from Stanford University and B.A. from Carleton College. In his spare time he operates a home winery specializing in a barrel-fermented Bordeaux blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Carmenere and Malbec. He has run the Boston Marathon several times and has completed all the major military marathons, including the Marine Corps Marathon (finishing ahead of several Marines considerably younger than him).
Eric M. Johnson Chavarria
2017-19 Executive Branch Fellow, NIH
Eric has a biophysics background with expertise in microfluidics for single-cell confinement and cytoskeleton research. Previously, his research experience includes protein-ligand interactions using spectroscopic techniques, automated microfluidics with fluorescence microscopy, and cytoskeleton force dependence. He is actively working to bridge technology gaps to address cancer and health disparities. He is committed to increasing diversity and leveraging open innovations including sandpit workshops, challenge competitions, and citizen-science/crowding sourcing initiatives to address health and research challenges.