Thomas Hayden is director of Stanford University’s graduate program in environmental communication. He came to Stanford in 2008, following a career of reporting and writing about science and environmental issues for national and international publications including Newsweek, US News & World Report, Wired, Smithsonian and National Geographic. Hayden is coauthor of several books: On Call in Hell, about battlefield medicine in Iraq, Sex and War, about the biological evolution and cultural development of warfare through human history, the 9th revision of the National Geographic Atlas of the World, and The Science Writers’ Handbook. He received an MS degree in marine biology from the University of Southern California and completed five years of doctoral study in biological oceanography at USC.

Sarah Gustavus is the Mountain West regional manager for the Solutions Journalism Network. Prior to joining SJN in 2018, she was a senior multimedia producer at New Mexico PBS, where she produced the weekly, statewide news program New Mexico In Focus. She has extensive experience reporting on issues in both rural and Native American/Alaska Native communities. As executive producer of national programs for Koahnic Broadcast Corporation, a Native American-owned media company, she led coverage of the nationally-syndicated radio programs Native America Calling, National Native News and Earthsongs. She has produced radio stories for national programs like All Things Considered, Latino USA, Weekend America, Making Contact, Tell Me More, the NPR newscast and various documentary specials. Sarah earned a master’s degree from City University London and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas at Austin.

New Models of Science Communication

Keith Campbell is vice president and managing editor of The Dallas Morning News. In a nearly 29-year career at The News, Campbell has held a variety of editing positions, including interim managing editor, deputy managing editor for news and business, assistant managing editor for news, communities editor, deputy sports editor and Page One editor. He directed coverage of the 2016 Dallas police ambush, which was a finalist for the 2017 Pulitzer Prize. Campbell has served as a vice president for The Dallas Morning News Charities since 2014. He is active in numerous journalism organizations, including the Online News Association and American Society of News Editors. He’s a graduate of the University of Missouri.

Kiah Collier reports on energy and environmental policy for The Texas Tribune. Previously, she reported on government and politics for the Austin American-Statesman and the Houston Chronicle. Kiah has won a variety of awards for her reporting, including a Peabody for her work on a 2016 project that examined research into a specific type of hurricane scientists say will eventually devastate the city of Houston. She is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin.

Brendan Gibbons covers the environment and water for The Rivard Report, an independent nonprofit newsroom in San Antonio. He previously covered the environment for a daily newspaper in Scranton, Pennsylvania and the San Antonio Express-News. He holds a degree in science journalism from the University of Missouri, and his background includes a stint as a science aide monitoring birds for the U.S. Forest Service and as an office assistant for a plant science lab in Missouri. He grew up in Grand Junction, Colorado.

Using Improv to Sharpen Science Communication Skills (an interactive workshop

Nichole Bennett researches science communication in the Ph.D. program at Moody College of Communication at The University of Texas at Austin. Through STEMprov, she teaches scientists improv to boost their communication skills ( She teaches coding at Long-View Micro School and has her Masters in Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior from The University of Texas. She is also an improv performer, instructor, director, and technical designer and has won three B. Iden Payne awards. Nichole teaches improv to neurodivergent youth through The Hideout Theatre’s Building Connections Program. You can follow her on Twitter @choleness or Instagram at @theawkwardoff.

Bringing Science to the People

Monika Maeckle: After a career in media and marketing, Monika Maeckle cofounded San Antonio’s independent nonprofit news website the Rivard Report, started the Texas Butterfly Ranch, a pollinator advocacy website, and founded San Antonio’s Monarch Butterfly and Pollinator Festival, now in its fourth year. She writes about pollinators, native plants and the ecosystems that sustain them from a citizen science and Master Gardener perspective. She is working on a book, The Monarch Butterfly Chronicles.

Pamela R. Owen is Associate Director of Texas Memorial Museum, the natural history museum at The University of Texas at Austin. She is a mammalogist and vertebrate paleontologist as well as an informal science educator, providing preK-12 teacher professional development and specimen-based public outreach programs in the natural sciences for more than 19 years. Two of the most popular outreach programs she runs are Identification Day and Texas Wildlife Day (learn more here). Dr. Owen’s formal education includes a B.A. and M.S. in Biology from California State University, Long Beach and a Ph.D. in Geological Sciences from The University of Texas at Austin.

Audrey Stewart runs the research and education side of Animal Facts Club – an Austin-based art-science collaborative that shares information through creative acts and productions. She received her Master’s in Ecology, Evolution and Behavior from the University of Texas at Austin and has worked as an environmental educator with municipal, nonprofit and research institutions for 10+ years. She is also the Conservation Program Coordinator for the City of Austin’s Wildland Conservation Division.

Expanding Your SciComm Toolkit

Mickey Delp is an electrical and computer engineer with expertise in analog and digital circuit design and embedded systems programming. He is an instructor at dadageek where he teaches analog audio electronics. He is the founder and Chief Inventor at Delptronics, a maker of unique electronic musical instruments. He is a frequent presenter at Dorkbot and Nerd Nite, and co-developed and co-runs the Nerd Nite Austin Ambasador program. Mickey is also an electronic musician who performs solo and with various projects around Austin.

Thomas Hayden (see bio above)

Bonnie Petrie covers bioscience and medicine for Texas Public Radio. Bonnie grew up on the Canadian border in northern New York, but has happily called Texas home for 15 years. She is a 2017 Texas Radio Hall of Fame nominee in recognition of her work in Houston and Dallas before moving to San Antonio. Most recently, Bonnie worked in Los Angeles reporting for public radio stations KPCC and KCRW. She is mom to a middle-schooler and spends her free time solving family mysteries through genetic genealogy.