CPO to Host Five Knauss Fellows for 2021-22

  • 21 February 2021
CPO to Host Five Knauss Fellows for 2021-22

CPO is pleased to welcome an excellent group of five Knauss Fellows for 2021-2022 - likely a record number for the office.

Alec Shub will be working with CPO Deputy Director Ben DeAngelo and Lisa Vaughan from the Climate and Societal Interactions (CSI) Division on the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Program, as well as on International Coastal Blue Carbon. He recently completed his M.S. in Oceanography at the University of Connecticut and conducted his thesis research on paleoceanography, focused on using the tiny sand sized shells of foraminifera to explore the mechanisms involved in forcing Earth into and out of glaciation over the last 140,000 years. Now, Alec is looking forward to applying his skills to pressing climate topics that are being addressed nationally and through international collaboration.

Shadaesha Green ("Shae"), a native of The Bronx, NY, is currently in the final stages of her PhD in Marine Estuarine Environmental Science at University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science. Her dissertation is focused on physiology and endocrinology of the red deep-sea crab, Chaceon quinquedens. Specifically, her research investigates the reproductive biology of female crabs, with an emphasis on characterizing putative hormonal reproductive regulators. As a Knauss Fellow, she will be supporting CPO and the Communication, Education and Engagement (CEE) Division on Risk Team-related communication and engagement tasks.

Noura Randle comes to CPO from Texas A&M University, where she is wrapping up her PhD in Oceanography. Her research focuses on investigating the North Pacific climate evolution over the last 18 million years by reconstructing sea surface temperatures. Prior to starting her PhD, Noura made a career commitment to science literacy, accessibility, and advocacy. She lived abroad in the United Arab Emirates, where at different times she worked at the Sharjah Biennial, taught grades 1 & 2 and was the assistant to the founding director of the ICCROM-ATHAR Regional Conservation Centre. Noura will be working with Earth System Science and Modeling (ESSM) Division/Climate Observation and Monitoring (COM) Program to explore nontraditional types of observations and observational-based analyses as well as their use in multiple sectors. She will also explore how ESSM/COM can best incorporate and integrate these with its focus on NOAA observations, in the context of NOAA's Science and Technology areas (e.g. AI) and CPO's priority areas (inclusive of several risk teams).

Xinyi Zeng (pronounced shin•YEE) will be working as a Science Communicator and Outreach Specialist for ESRL's Global Monitoring Lab in collaboration with CPO and CEE. Xinyi recently graduated from Boston College with an M.S. in Geology and an MBA. She is interested in research on climate change, water cycle, and water resource management and hopes to better communicate science through data visualization and storytelling.  The CEE Division will be working with Xinyi's hosts and mentors—Diane Stanitski, Colm Sweeney, and Julie Singewald—in supporting Xinyi during her fellowship.   

Nicole Rucker has joined the U.S. Global Change Research Program, supported by CPO's Assessments Program. Nicole is a PhD candidate in the University of Delaware’s School of Marine Science and Policy where she works with Dr. Carolyn Thoroughgood. Her research is a retrospective analysis of state-level sea level rise planning and implication for policy diffusion. She has a B.S. in biology from George Washington University and an M.S. in environmental science from San José State University. Prior to going back to school to pursue a Ph.D., Nicole worked in the private and public sectors as an environmental scientist specializing in regulatory compliance. Over the next year, Nicole will be working with the National Climate Assessment team, where she will contribute to the NCA5 FAQs, public engagement efforts, and author meeting planning.





DEIA Working Group

The Climate Program Office (CPO) seeks to advance scientific understanding, monitoring, and prediction of climate and its impacts to enable effective decisions. It is our vision that CPO reflects and leverages the talent and diversity of its employees to ensure people, businesses, and the environment continue to thrive in the face of climate impacts.

CPO’s Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) Working Group was formed in the summer of 2020 in response to civil rights movements across the country. CPO leadership recognized the importance of acknowledging the pain of the nation (and staff members) and of taking action to improve DEIA initiatives and direction within the Climate Program Office. The CPO DEIA Working Group was subsequently formed. The DEIA Working Group developed a 4-year, 20-page, strategic plan to address issues within the office as well as improve outreach, targeted recruitment, and DEIA training opportunities across CPO.

Read the CPO DEIA Strategic Plan »



Outreach and Volunteer Efforts

CPO continues to look for opportunities to give back and contribute to our local area. Past examples of our efforts include:

CPO ‘Giveback’ Drives

    Winter 2020: CPO staff donated over 100 food and hygiene bags to the Bowie Interfaith Works Food Shelter as well as a $200 money order for the DC Central Kitchen soup kitchen and shelter.

    Summer 2021: CPO staff donated approximately $700 to Covenant House DC.

Earth Day Clean Up

CPO staff donated their time to clean up the Anacostia Watershed, a wetland area within an urban park that feeds into the Northwest branch of the Anacostia.

CPO staff holding food and hygiene bags

CPO Staff prepared and delivered 100+ food and hygiene bags to Bowie Interfaith Works Food Shelter




NOAA & NOAA Research Resources

CPO is a part of the NOAA Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research (OAR). OAR’s unique role in NOAA’s mission of science, service and stewardship demands a diverse workforce to reflect, understand, and respond to the varied communities and stakeholders we serve. Equally important is an equitable and inclusive work environment that enhances organizational performance. OAR’s sustained commitment to strengthen diversity and equity, and nurture a culture of inclusion, is critical to the success of the preeminent research required to support weather and climate forecasting, understand and predict Earth systems, promote sustainable economic uses of America’s oceans, Great Lakes and coasts, and support communities and ecosystems so they are resilient to inevitable change.

If you'd like to learn more about NOAA and OAR efforts to increase and improve knowledge and understanding of diversity, equity, and inclusion issues, please follow these links for additional information:




1315 East-West Highway Suite 100
Silver Spring, MD 20910


Americans’ health, security and economic wellbeing are tied to climate and weather. Every day, we see communities grappling with environmental challenges due to unusual or extreme events related to climate and weather.