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, 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. Donna is a board member of the Orcas Island Community Resources Center and loves living in the Pacific Northwest.
Devon Emily Thorsell is the Program Operations Manager for the Washington State Academy of Sciences. She has been with WSAS since July 2017 and is responsible for of the day-to-day operations of the Academy including finance, communications, member engagement and support, contract management, and general administration. Devon earned her Masters of Marine Affairs and Masters of International Studies from the University of Washington in 2015. Devon enjoys playing ultimate Frisbee, is a member of the Seattle Women’s Chorus, and serves as the President for the Seattle Country Day School Alumni Council.
Yasmeen Hussain is the Associate Program Officer with the Washington State Academy of Sciences, facilitating existing and future WSAS studies. Yasmeen’s experience includes managing programs for the Professional Development Hub, serving as a AAAS Science and Tech Policy Congressional Fellow in the office of Rep. Bill Foster, and working as an Associate Program Officer and Mirzayan Fellow at the National Academies in Washington, DC. Yasmeen earned her PhD in Biology at the University of Washington and a BS in Mathematics and Biology at the University of Utah. Yasmeen volunteers her time in science education and mentoring, and serves on the board of the Association of Women in Science (AWIS) Seattle Chapter.